DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The Special Olympics "Flame of Hope" made its way to Daytona International Speedway as part of its "Final Leg" Tour.
It's to help build excitement for Sunday's opening ceremonies.
"It was really exciting driving here. I build-up to come to run at Daytona was so much, I don’t think anyone slept on the bus coming here," Oklahoma City police officer, Brian Jennings said.
Law enforcement and Special Olympic athletes took ran one lap around the tri-oval before crossing the finish line to the sounds of cheers.
"It’s an honor to carry it to start off the games. It’s my first time doing it too," David Rams said.
Rams is one of the thousands of athletes competing in the Special Olympic Games. He'll try to medal in shot put and the 4 x 400-meter relay.
The games feature 19 Olympic-style team and individual sports and 30 different events.
It only happens once every four years.
"Tonight there’s 4,500 athletes who are packing their bags. Athletes whose parents may have never believed that their sons and their daughters would be competing on a national stage," USA Games official, Mark Edenzon said.
For the athletes and officers who participated in the nearly two-week torn run, that spanned several states – they've formed a special bond.
"We’re not just torch runners, we’re family now," Rams said.
Opening ceremonies are at Exploria Stadium on Sunday.