CMT’s newest reality series, Racing Wives, is going to be “fast, fun and fabulous!” according to two of the show’s stars, Whitney Ward Dillon and Mariel Lane, who are married to NASCAR driver, Austin Dillon, and his pit crew member, Paul Swan, respectively. “Racing is such a crazy world,” Whitney told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “We really go into behind the scenes of our lives on the track AND off the track. You’ll see everything — how it works with the teams, the owners, the crew chiefs, the engineers, and how they live their lives week to week. Then there’s everyone else who’s part of NASCAR, like the PR girls. You see so many really cool job opportunities, which people don’t know anything about! That’s going to be really cool for people to see.”
Both Whitney and Mariel, who are BFFs and neighbors in North Carolina, agreed that it “wasn’t a question” about whether or not they’d take part in the show, although Whitney admitted that it was a little harder to get her husband to agree. “When we were filming, it was our first year of being married, and there was a lot of stress on it,” Whitney explained. “Austin didn’t want to do the show. He’s surrounded by cameras already and he didn’t want it to be a distraction for his work. So getting him on-board took awhile, but I feel like now, he trusts everyone. [Mariel and I] are open books, so he’s just trying to protect us.”
Luckily, Mariel didn’t have as much trouble. “As far as Paul, my husband…he’s an open book, as well,” she said. “So he was pretty for it.” Throughout the season, we’ll see Mariel and Paul plan their wedding, while Whitney navigates being accepted into the NASCAR wives community. “It’s hard to be accepted,” Whitney revealed. “The whole community has to accept you. You just kind of see our growing pains of me trying to fit in and Mariel coming with me. You see the dynamics of us and our husbands, too.”
Of course, there is no show without some drama. The ladies said that the racing community is like a “family,” but admitted that things do get tense sometimes. “The drama comes in with the other wives,” Whitney explained. “I’m new and trying to be accepted, and there’s just certain people that it’s harder for. Just trying to balance our friendship and my marriage and our company makes some drama. It just naturally happens with five women. We’re all from different places and grew up differently. We’re on different teams. It’s a lot of competition.”
Mariel added, “It’s really hard. Your husband and significant others are competing against each other every single weekend. They’re wrecking each other! So if someone’s husband wrecks your husband…you have to take your husband’s side.”
At the end of the day though, the ladies on the show are simply “having a lot of fun.” “It will make you happy,” Whitney confirmed. “We have a lot of love for each other and our group dynamic. It’s really light-hearted drama that you just go through. It’s real. Everyone has gone through it. Everyone wants to be loved and accepted. It’s something that’s feel good on TV. I feel like we’re lacking that.” Racing Wives premieres on Friday, August 2 at 10:00 p.m. on CMT.