“He’s an upstanding young man,” Thomsen said. “Without the support of his family, he wouldn’t have been able to run all year long.”
Praytor’s father, Tommy Praytor, served as his crew chief throughout the season. Praytor, 23, said he was humbled by the award.
“This means so much to me,” Praytor said. “I can’t say enough about everyone in this room.”
He came back to the podium as a top 10 driver later and reiterated his appreciation for the award and his fellow competitors in the ARCA garage.
The H.G. Adcox Sportsmanship Award was named in honor of Grant Adcox, a former ARCA driver who was killed during a NASCAR Winston Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is presented annually to honor someone who exhibits the ability to show class in competition and truly defines sportsmanship to fellow competitors, officials and fans in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards.
Praytor, affectionately called “Moose,” began the 2013 season at Daytona International Speedway, driving the No. 2 owned by Wayne Hixson, for what was supposed to be only a few races. He finished 22nd and two laps down after battling among the top drivers for several laps early in the race.
Praytor and Hixson, then, remained together throughout the season, as he ended up making 21 starts, scoring three top 10 finishes and finishing 9th in the final driver point standings – just five points out of eighth place.
As Thomsen said in introducing the award, Praytor became known for his friendly nature in the garage area. He also helped raise money for charity. After the Talladega race, Praytor donated the racing helmet he wore to the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind for a fundraiser auction. The helmet was signed by him and his friend, University of Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron.