When Automotive News in 2007 asked Bruton Smith to describe himself, he replied: "I'm just an average guy who's been very fortunate."
Yet Smith's automotive retail career, intertwined with the motorsports industry, was anything but average.
Smith was the co-founder of Sonic Automotive Inc., a NASCAR Hall of Famer, racetrack owner and philanthropist who got his start selling used cars from his front lawn as a teenager.
Smith sold his first car, a 1939 Buick sedan, eking out a small profit. He promoted his first race before he was 18.