Drag Racing — 17 May 2010

Young racer Samantha Dubbs had this article written about her in her local newspaper.. We found the points standings on her local track’s website and she is currently 2nd in points! We hope to ear more from this young lady in the near future!

Samantha Dubbs began her life in the sport of drag racing at the tender age of 8, when she took to the track in a junior dragster vehicle.

Now 16, the Altoona Area High School junior has since graduated to a regular, bigger rear engine dragster car – the same one used by her father, Brian, who competed in the sport for 18 years.

But the best lessons Samantha learned about drag racing from her dad – who is also now her racing crew chief – had nothing in particular to do with engines or hand-eye coordination.

“Really, he taught me just to have fun,” Samantha said. “He taught me that if I take things too seriously, all the fun goes out [of racing]. And he said that I don’t have fun with it, [he's not going to allow her] to continue to do it. So I try to go out each time and have fun.”

Samantha no doubt had a blast on Sunday, April 18, at the Beaver Springs Dragway between Lewistown and Selinsgrove. She won the Top ET [Elapsed Time] event at the track that day, pacing a field of 30 competitors by driving her car at a top speed of 169 miles per hour and covering the straightaway asphalt track that measured 1,320 feet in a pace-setting time of 8.04 seconds.

It was just Samantha’s third race in the bigger rear engine vehicle, but she ran like a seasoned pro.

“I wasn’t nervous at all,” she said. “Some times, my nerves get to me before a race, and I don’t do well. But I figured that if I was going to win, it would happen. Once I won the first round, I was calm the rest of the day. I figured I would be able to keep [winning].”

The youngest racer in a field made up of largely middle-aged males, Samantha won five events en route to her championship.

“The cars were going off the start line two a time, and she had to win five separate run-offs with different cars,” Brian Dubbs said of his daughter. “In each race, the loser of the two cars is out, and the winner goes on to the next round. She did an excellent job.”

Samantha credits the guidance of her father – a top dragster in his own right during his competitive career – with helping her achieve her success.

But her dad said that she caught on very quickly to the newer, bigger vehicle that she started driving just last year.

“She picked up everything very fast for as young as she is,” Brian Dubbs said. “She does really good with her reaction times. She’s not intimidated by anything, I’ll tell you that.”

Drag racing is a relatively safe endeavor – Brian Dubbs said he’s more concerned for his daughter’s safety in an average street automobile.

“These cars [dragster vehicles] are all about safety,” he said. “I maintain the [drag racing] car she drives, and I make sure that everything is OK.”

Accidents or injury are things, Samantha said, that never cross her mind. In fact, she plans to continue in the sport of drag racing well into her adult years.

“I was actually surprised, I didn’t think I’d get in a big car and do that good that soon,” she said. “I don’t plan on quitting at all. I have plans to go to college after high school, but I’m going to continue to race, too.”

[News & Picture Source]

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