Nearly one year ago, a dirt bike incident ended Giovanni Bromante’s season – and nearly ended his career.
“I could have been paralyzed,” Bromante told Speed51. “If I would have fractured it an inch in a different direction, I would probably be in a wheelchair right now. God really blessed me.”
Now, a fully recovered Bromante is Blizzard Series Champion at Five Flags Speedway (FL), bouncing back from the injury for a breakthrough season in Super Late Model racing. The 2019 Rattler 250 winner spoke about the accomplishment on Speed51’s “The Morning Bullring” Monday.
“To say I’ve been doing all this stuff, I never thought I’d be here right now, talking on the Morning Bullring, talking about winning the Blizzard Series Championship or The Rattler. It’s a blessing.”
Bromante’s title snaps a streak of five consecutive years where either Casey Roderick or Bubba Pollard claimed the Blizzard Series championship, with NASCAR Cup Series driver Daniel Hemric being the most recent champion outside of that duo in 2013.
Furthermore, Bromante can add his name to the list of champions in the Five Flags Speedway Super Late Model series, which beyond those three also includes Augie Grill, Chase Elliott, Johanna Long, Josh Hamner, Scott Carlson, Dave Mader, III and Eddie Mercer.
“It’s Bubba Pollard, it’s Casey Roderick, they’ve been racing for years and years. They’ve won this championship many times. That I can put myself on that list with their names, when you look at Super Late Model or Pro Late Model racing, it’s Casey Roderick, Bubba Pollard, those are the names. To fit myself on that list is pretty cool.”
Bromante even surprised himself by winning the championship, not realizing his accomplishment until he stopped on the frontstretch as the second-place finisher in Saturday’s season finale and found two trophies waiting for him.
“I went into that race, and I didn’t even know if I had a chance of winning it. Now that it’s all over, it’s really big. It’s a great thing to put on my resume.
“I got out of the car and I didn’t even know I had won the championship. I was greeted with two trophies and thought, ‘Wow, I’m the champion.’”
The accomplishment also carries sentimental value, as Bromante’s grandfather passed away last fall.
“This is all for my grandpa. He died in November. He rides with me. We have his name on the car. To be the champion and do all this is just crazy. They just back me so much. They know I have it in me to do this and go forward and be great with my career.”
Bromante nearly ended the Blizzard Series in style, leading comfortably in the closing laps of the finale. However, Jett Noland stalling on the backstretch brought out a caution with eight laps to go, which allowed Florida veteran Jesse Dutilly to take the win.
“Jesse Dutilly did a great job of saving his tires. He was definitely the fastest car on the track. That caution fell and I had a pretty big lead with eight laps to go. It played out how it did, and you can’t do anything about it. That’s just racing.”
As a result of the championship, Giovanni Bromante is guaranteed a starting spot in the 52ndAnnual Snowball Derby, held at Five Flags Speedway on December 8. Even if Bromante is not one of the 30 fastest qualifiers during the dramatic and tense single-car qualifying session on Friday night, he will receive a provisional starting position and avoid Saturday’s Last Chance Qualifier.
Bromante hopes that his Blizzard Series success can translate to a win in Super Late Model racing’s biggest race.
“That’s one of my biggest dreams. It’s one of anybody’s dreams. It’s just such a prestigious race. I’m just happy that, even if the car isn’t good, I’ll make the race and won’t have to be in that LCQ. Just to be in the Snowball Derby, that’s crazy.”
However, a Blizzard Series champion hasn’t won the Snowball Derby since 2005, when Eddie Mercer snapped a 17-year drought in the Derby to score an elusive first win in the crown jewel.
Hearing this information after his interview on the show, Bromante had a simple reply on Speed51’s Facebook feed.
“Let’s break another streak then.”
Fans who missed Bromante’s interview can view Monday’s episode of “The Morning Bullring” on-demand by clicking here. “The Morning Bullring” airs every Monday starting at 7 a.m. ET on Speed51.com and Speed51’s Facebook Feed, presented by Five Star Race Car Bodies.
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51.com photo