• Swerve or Die

  • Life at My Speed in the First Family of NASCAR Racing
  • By: Kyle Petty, Ellis Henican
  • Narrated by: Kyle Petty
  • Length: 9 hrs and 41 mins
  • 4.9 out of 5 stars (86 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

This program is read by Kyle Petty and Includes his performance of his original song, "Under the Big Top."

Stock-car racing star, country singer, and sports broadcaster Kyle Petty shares his familial legacy, intertwined with NASCAR’s founding and history, in Swerve or Die—written with Pulitzer Prize-winner Ellis Henican, the New York Times bestselling coauthor of In the Blink of an Eye.

“Born into racing royalty. The only son of NASCAR’s winningest driver ever. The grandson of one of the sport’s true pioneers. The nephew of our very first Hall of Fame engine builder. It’s quite a family to represent, and through it all, I’ve somehow managed to keep being Kyle.”

Kyle Petty won his very first stock-car race, the Daytona ARCA 200, in 1979 when he was eighteen. Hailed as a third-generation professional NASCAR racer, he became an instant celebrity in circles he had been around all his young life. Despite being the grandson and son of racing champions Lee Petty and Richard Petty, Kyle didn’t inherit innate talent. Working in his family’s North Carolina race shop from an early age, he learned all about car mechanics and maintenance long before he got behind the wheel. And although Kyle continued the family business, driving “Petty blue” colored cars emblazoned with his grandfather’s #42—a number once used by Marty Robbins—his career took a different route than his forebears’.

In Swerve or Die: Life at My Speed in the First Family of NASCAR Racing, Kyle chronicles his life on and off the racetrack, presenting his insider’s perspective of growing up throughout the sport’s popular rise in American culture. In between driving and running Petty Enterprises for thirty years, Kyle took some detours into country music, voiced Cal Weathers in Pixar’s Cars 3, and started his annual motorcycle Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America. And when his nineteen-year-old son Adam, a fourth-generation racing Petty, tragically lost his life on the track, Kyle founded Victory Junction, a camp for children with chronic and serious medical conditions in Adam’s name—with help from Academy Award-winning actor and motorsports enthusiast Paul Newman.

Filled with NASCAR history, stories of his family’s careers, and anecdotes about some of stock-car racing’s most famous drivers, Kyle’s memoir also tackles the sport’s evolution, discussing how welcoming diverse racers, improving car and track safety features, and integrating green technology will benefit NASCAR’s competitors and fans in the future.

A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press.

©2022 Kyle Petty and Ellis Henican (P)2022 Macmillan Audio

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What listeners say about Swerve or Die

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Entertaining and Moving

Kyle Petty shares his life, the highs and lows, in a moving and entertaining way. I enjoyed the book from start to finish. Even if you’re not a hardcore race fan, you’ll find it thoughtful and interesting.

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Great story about Kyle’s life and growing up in the Petty family.

I really enjoyed this book. Kyle has a wonderful gift of story telling, made even better with his honest and down to earth delivery. This book was well worth the time to read. It takes you through many aspects of Kyle’s upbringing and adult life. There are parts of this book that made me laugh out loud and others that make you understand and appreciate the backstory of Victory Junction and the Kyle Petty Charity ride. I can’t imagine how hard it was to hear the news about Adam, and how much courage it must have taken to keep moving forward. Good work, Kyle, this is a great story, and you tell it in a way no one else could. Thanks for sharing your family, your thoughts, and your history.

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10

10 a f#£k’n 10
Even Billy Bob would love
Much more appreciation for the Petty Family .

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Great Book

This is a great book I did learn a few things about Kyle I didn’t know he and his dad has always been my Drivers his dad is why I still drive Dodge cars and trucks…..Just buy the book……..

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Richard Kyle Selby

One awesome book! Made me laugh and cry but was told from the heart of Kyle Petty! He does a great job of reading this!
Thanks

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great read

I laughed, I cried, I enjoyed it very much.
Kyle made you feel like it just the two of you swapping stories

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Nascar fan must read

I loved this book, it was a window into one of NASCAR's most famous families. Some would say first families. The heartache they went through during the highest Highs and the lowest lows.

God bless the Petty family!

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Great Read By What Appears To Be A Great Person!

From a family that has seen it all and done it all in NASCAR! As recently as this past Saturday night the Famous #43 with Erik Jones won at Darlington, 55 years to the day Richard Petty parked in victory lane at the same track.

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A great look into the life of racings 1st family.

Great book and long overdue.
Wonderful look into the Petty Family.
Kyle was wonderful doing the audio book.

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Life story

I have all of the respect in the world for Kyle and the Petty family but would have liked a bit more behind the scenes story’s into the sport. That being said it is his story complete with his highs and lows as well as his other endeavors.