Yea, I know. There’s a big difference between a 1800 hp twin turbo doorslammer running 6 sec/200+ mph passes and a 7000 hp flopper running 4 sec/300+mph passes, but I’ve got to thank A&E and the Forces for showing what I suspect a vast majority of the women who dare navigate the 1/4 mile experience while learning to pilot these high powered “beasts” (to quote John). Let me reminisce…
I did not come from the racing pedigree that Ashley, Brittany, Courtney were born and raised in, in fact I hardly knew what drag racing was when I turned 16. My parents can hardly change a tire, and certainly were not race fans, but somehow I had a passion for speed and hot cars that would become more prominent as I graduated high school. So, when I purchased my first car: a 1990 5.0 Mustang GT, I was thrilled with the possibilities, and even more facinated with the world of information and aftermarket available out there on the domestic scene. Later that summer, I would venture to my hometown dragstrip for the first time. I didn’t know anything about how drag racing worked, but being a competitor at heart, and an adrenaline junkie, I knew I had to try it.
My first pass in late 1998 was a 15.30. A year later it was a 13.20. By 2000, I drove my first power adder car, a supercharged street coupe, to an 11.20. And before the end of 2001, I obtained my 9 second NHRA license in a twin turbo mustang. Fast forward through my first 8 second pass in 02, and my championship first runner up in 03, to my switch to the PRO 5.0 category and obtaining my Advanced ET license in the 6’s at 200mph today. Now, none of this is in the same ballpark as driving a top alcohol dragster over 200 mph before age 23, and licensing in your very own funny car to boot. But what I found so refreshing about this episode of Driving Force is how well myself and I’m sure many other women can relate to her experiences.
There is something about the way men and women learn and adapt to new experiences and new situations. My close friends (Hi Deby!) have had a good laugh over the antics and the battles that Dan & I have weathered through the process of getting me acclimated with the new car, and while they are funny to me now, they weren’t so funny then.
You see, there is what I call a sensitivity chip missing in men. A COMMONSENSE-ITIVITY chip that aids in the walk of a fine line between brave and ignorant. There is a point where you must accept fate & have the faith where your senses fail you. Guys have that blind faith. Faith in their machines, faith in their destiny, fate in their ABILITIES. Nevermind that the idea of losing vision while traveling at over 300 mph is not only terrifying and insane, but to have the blind faith to stay in the throttle that first pass is jarring. Us women, we feel. We analyze. We THINK. Much to the chargin of men, we often overthink, and overcomplicate. But as Ashley pointed out, all of the things– the thoughts, the feelings, the nerves, and the pressure come flooding over our brains, and as she delicately pointed out, the only thing stopping her is herself. She knows it, her team knows it. I also know this, and so does Dan. We all concur 100%.
Its definitely proven true the old adage… “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” although at times I swore Dan was from somewhere beyond Pluto. A planet with some coined race related name like Dragtopia or something where the people are born dropping clutches and wheeling pro mods. But somehow, we made it through it and truthfully, I know and appreciate that Dan means well and only the best for me (as John does for his daughters). …Even if Dan “definitely doesn’t have a career as a motivational speaker.”