POMONA, Calif. (Nov. 9) – ZaZa Energy driver Erica Enders studied business at Texas A&M, but she’s also a student of history – NHRA history.
The 28-year-old Enders knows all about the rich history of the site of the final Pro Stock race of the season, Auto Club Raceway, which hosts the Auto Club NHRA Finals this weekend.
“There’s a ton of history there, and I love going to this track,” Enders said.
Pomona held its first race in 1953 after a local car club convinced the city to allow a proper place for hot-rodders to race their cars. The track has become synonymous with drag racing in the years since.
Enders got goosebumps the first time she raced at Pomona. She was 20 years old and in her rookie season driving for Cagnazzi Racing. The feelings are as fresh as if they happened yesterday.
“I remember my first time rolling around the corner to pull on the track as a professional driver – and the feeling I had there,” Enders said. “I thought, ‘Wow, this is happening. It’s for real.’ There were so many feelings. As a driver, you don’t think in the car. But when I fired and pulled around the corner and saw the fans and all the crew members and the TV cameras, it was awesome.
“I was 20 years old, and that was my dream. I worked hard for it, and I finally got there. It was one of those feelings like, ‘This is it. I made it.’”
The memories are rich for Enders, and she’d love to add to them with her first Pro Stock victory there.
“A lot of memories at Pomona,” Enders said. “I’m hopeful to get my first win there.”
Enders has raced to her best season as a professional in 2011, reaching three final rounds and qualifying No. 1 twice. She’s been a consistent threat every race and sits sixth in the Pro Stock points standings. She’s only one point out of the top five and seven from fourth place.
Whatever happens in Pomona, Enders and her ZaZa Energy team will have smiles on their faces.
“The fans are great, the weather’s usually always awesome, and I enjoy going there,” Enders said. “I’ll have my whole family there, and all the ZaZa guys will be out there. We’re going to celebrate at the banquet after the race.
“Plus, my Jr. Dragster’s in the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum there, so I’m going to pay her a little visit. I’m sure she misses me.”
Please visit www.ZaZaEnergy.com for more information.