Hi everyone:) I promise I’m trying to do better a
bout getting blog posts up
more often, but tonight I’m just sitting here attempting to do homework/study and as I was avoiding my responsibilities, I read something and it just got me thinking. So here are my thoughts that I feel like I just want everyone to know.
One of the people that I’ve looked up to since I was little, crashed about a month and a half ago or so in Marble Falls, Texas. Scotty Lumbert has raced in top fuel for as long as I can remember and he has set world records and won many championships. As he was doing all of those things, he also would stop to talk to me before he went to the ramp when I was also in line to make my passes. He would also talk to me at races, banquets, etc. and tell me that he knew I was going to do great things. This Top Fuel Hydro champion had no obligation to tell me those things, and no obligation to take the time that he did to make me feel like me racing in a sportsman category mattered to him, but he did, and those things changed my life. Now, he is still fighting to wake up from a coma, and the amount of support he and his family has received is absolutely unbelievable. I’ll be honest, I’ve dreamt about racing top fuel for a long time now. Sometimes, I struggle to admit that I’ve dreamt about this because of all of the lives it has taken from us. So the fact that Scotty is still fighting for his life has really had me thinking about my dreams and what’s important.
No one wants their loved ones to get that call that says “Your driver has crashed and is being air lifted to a hospital in such and such town and this is what we’re going to do to help you get there” etc, etc. I’ve never gotten that call, but I’ve thought a lot about what I would do if I did. I grew up as a racer’s daughter. I didn’t get to go to every single race, even though I wanted to. Every race I didn’t get to go to, I just prayed that I would get a call that my dad was safe at the end of each day. That’s the only thing that mattered to me. So, now, I’m racing Pro Modified, which let me tell ya, has been one of my dreams for as long as I can remember. I honestly wasn’t sure it would ever happen, but it did. I’ve also been growing up along with my racing career. I have a mom and a dad who love me very much. I have grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins who would be devastated if anything ever happened to me. I also have a boyfriend who just went to his first race and I’m not sure if he even knows what he has gotten himself into. I have a puppy that wouldn’t understand, if something happened, why I never came home. So every race these days, I think, “What would so and so do if they were the ones that got that call? Why would I ever make them go through that pain?” The only thing that gives me comfort in those times is knowing that the people that I love know that I love this sport so much that I would die for it. And to some people, that sounds crazy, that sounds like the stupidest thing they’ve ever heard. Why would I die for something that is a hobby? That’s just an adrenaline rush? The thing is, it’s not just a hobby. It’s not just a way to get my heart pounding on the weekends. It’s not just the excitement of winning and the frustration of losing. It’s the people you meet along the way. It’s the people like Scotty, who probably doesn’t know he’s made such an impact on my life and career. There were people who told me that I would never race because I’m a girl. But there were also people like Scotty telling me that I was going to do amazing things. It’s the bond you make with your team from traveling all across the country. It’s the stories you have about that one time where you celebrated your first win in a truck stop parking lot with some of your favorite people. It’s the long nights where you’re up until 4 a.m. getting the motor back together to make first round on Sunday morning at 9 a.m.. It’s the fans that come up to you and say “you’re my idol” or “I’ve been following your career since you were on jet skis.” It’s that look in your mom and dads eyes when you come back to the pit from a final round win. It’s the way boat racing can change peoples lives when you take them to their first race, not necessarily because of the racing, but because of the people.
So I guess my point is that for the people who wonder why racers do the things that they do? It’s these things. It’s not just about winning and losing, it’s about all the little things in between.
I get this question all the time. “Aren’t you ever scared?” I usually answer “no, this is all I’ve ever known.” The correct answer to that question, though, would be “yes” but I’m not scared for me. I’ve chose to go out there every single round and take the chance that I might not come back to the pits uninjured. Who am I scared for? I’m scared for my parents, my family, my friends, my boyfriend, my puppy. I’m scared for them because they aren’t the ones that chose this. They’ve accepted that this is what I’m going to do. But I can honestly say that sometimes, I think that my mom might wish that I didn’t. My only wish if something ever happens to me while I’m racing, is that they’ll be strong like Scottys wife, Lynn, has been through their journey. She got that call and immediately went to be by his side and has been amazingly strong ever since. I also hope that they will find comfort in the fact that I was doing what I love. I truly think us racers are a different breed. We’re just lucky that we have people who love us enough to put up with what we do.