The story behind Ross Chastain’s watermelon smash, rental car fiasco


Carl Edwards had his famous backflip. Tony Stewart climbed the fence. Alan Kulwicki did the Polish Victory Lap (so did Fred Zack, but that’s another story). 

But none of them smashed a watermelon. 

Nope. That’s reserved for Florida native Ross Chastain — the fastest watermelon farmer around, and the latest first-time NASCAR Cup Series winner. 

“It’s what the Chastain family has been in for 12 generations,” said the 29-year-old, who drove his Chevy to a win last Sunday at Circuit of The Americas. “My first truck ride was a watermelon paint scheme. When I was coming into the sport, nobody knows who Ross Chastain is, so we had to just go out into the ‘ag’ industry and talk to people we knew.”

They may not have known back then, but people in and around the sport certainly know who Chastain is now. 

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