With his unexpected victory in the Daytona 500 on Feb. 14, 2021, Michael McDowell officially solidified himself as a NASCAR legend. Michael, a known underdog in the race, overcame impressive odds and a fiery collision to secure his victory in the prestigious race and has since become the NASCAR world's most talked-about driver.
His clearly impressive accolades in NASCAR aside, Michael is also a known family man and clearly portrays it through social media. This leaves the question, who exactly is Michael's wife, Jami McDowell? Also, what place does their relationship hold in the context of his career, and what's their home life like? Here's what we know about the breakout star of NASCAR's biggest competition.
Michael McDowell's wife, Jami McDowell, plays an important role in his life.
According to a conversation he had with Beliefnet, Michael met his wife when they were both just 15 years old. A very religious individual, the NASCAR star has professed his faith through many of his interviews and attributes that same devoutness to why his relationship with Jami has worked out so well. He explained at the time, "It’s been an amazing journey to have that support and have somebody that not only believes in your ability, but that shares the same faith and passion and pursuit."
Furthermore, he added, "As things go bad in your career or things go good, there’s always these highs and lows. Everybody has them in their life. Jami is that constant just like how God is there. He’s always the same loving God. So having a spouse that’s in it with you is awesome." That loving nature brought about the four children the couple share together, three of which they birthed, named Trace, Emma, and Rylie, and one child they adopted from China, named Lucas.
The couple has been passionate about advocating for adoption from underprivileged international communities for some time, with Michael telling The Roanoke Times ahead of the process, "It's just amazing to see things that we might see on TV. [But] we don't grasp it. We go, 'Oh man, that's tragic,' and then we just go back to our life. This was an eye-opener for me because we could see it and it was personal."
Michael made NASCAR history with his Daytona 500 win.
The influx of attention Michael has garnered as of late is largely attributed to his unexpected underdog championship in the 2021 Daytona 500. The champion, who left fans in awe as he wasn't even originally posed to be one of the race's biggest contenders, navigated beyond the fiery wreckage of Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, and Kyle Busch to a victorious lap in NASCAR's most famous race.
When the race began on Sunday afternoon, Feb. 14, Michael was stuck with some rough odds of winning: 100-1. However, the unexpected events of the night, plus over six hours of rain delays, created the perfect storm of sorts for the racer — who won for the first time in 358 Cup starts — to secure a victory.