Carolina Panthers' Greg Olsen leans out of the pace car before taking certification laps during a news conference at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C., Wednesday, May 18, 2016. Olsen will lead the field at the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup series
Chuck Burton

Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen will drive the pace car at the Sprint Cup All-Star race.

May 18, 2016

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Panthers Pro Bowl tight end Greg Olsen received his certification to the drive the pace car this Saturday night at the Sprint Cup All-Star race, although not without a little scare first.

While Olsen was taking a spin at 120 miles per hour around Charlotte Motor Speedway Wednesday with Sprint Cup driver Matt DiBenedetto, they had to avoid a metal gate that swung open on the backside of the track.

DiBenedetto broke well in time to avoid any accident.

Olsen joked the ride was ''way more stressful'' than he thought it'd be and that ''it's a good thing we have eight tight ends on the roster right now.''

Eventually Olsen drove the pace car around the track himself - at a much slower speed - in preparation for Saturday night.

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