Monday September 16th Show!

Did you miss the Monday September 16th Sam Auxier Jr. Show? Well have no fear… iTunes is here! Check out our great line-up!

Brett ‘Big Schwag’ Wagner, NHRA Top Fuel Driver Brittany Force! To top it off, there is some other interesting chatter too! So, check it out!

Dina Parise as Co-Host  along with Rick Markko .

Listen to the show here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-sam-auxier-jr-show/id550917610 (Click on 9/16/2013)

Be sure to tune in LIVE every Monday night at 7PM est at: http://www.thesamauxierjrshow.com/

You Gotta Have Friends!

 

Woof at ya my good peeps! It’s been a dogs day since Mom has let me at the lap top, but here I am! Boy things have been busy here at Dina Parise Racing! We have been racing and I have been hangin’ with my fans!

Since I last wrote we have been to Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia and maybe a few more places I can’t remember! I have been in and out of the Motor home so many times I’m dizzy!

It was so fun in Pennsylvania at Maple Grove Raceway raising donations for Indy Honor Flight ( http://www.indyhonorflight.org/ ) part of Honor Flight Network .Mom and Dad think they did all the work, but really …. I reeled ’em all in with my cuteness! And WOW, did we collect a lot of donations for them! Enough to send TWO Veterans on an Honor Flight!

Ya gotta have friends, right? I also got to hang with my Auntie Rhonda and Uncle Roger and Auntie Lisa at Virginia MotorSports Park for the Extreme Outlaw Pro mod Event! Auntie Rhonda has six fur kids that look just like me! Uncle Roger has one. His name is Mochi! He came to visit! And Auntie Lisa brought Morgan… She is furry, but looks kinds funny compared to me and Mochi ! We had a lotta fun! We made sure to leave Mom plenty of hair to vacuum up . I know how she loves to vacuum!

I may be a dog, but I love being at the track! I make sure to get my credentials and I am the best crewmember going! Dad says I’m not a pain in the rear like Mom… I don’t really know what that means, but…. I guess it’s good!

We have lots of good stuff coming up! We will be doing the Nassau County Cruise to the Show on September 28th and 29th! And I will be looking cuter than ever to raise more donations for Indy honor Flight! If you live on or near Long Island, come to the show!

Well, I have to go now, My fans are waiting!

Woof at ya!

See you at the races!

Bella The Wonder Pug

DPR and the 3 R’s! Racing, Writing and the Radio!

They say “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop”, right? So, if that saying has any truth to it you can certainly understand why the Dina Parise Racing team keeps so busy on and off the track! With and even without their Pro Mod Corvettes in tow the Parise’s have been keeping busy.
“This season has been a whirlwind so far!” Stated Dina Parise. “We have had to deal with blown motors and a crash, yes but that’s the stuff that makes you dig in and want more! Crazy as that sounds! Well, no one ever said we were normal!” She laughs.
DPR has just returned from Maple Grove Raceway. It was the Latin American Sport Compacts and the Northeast Outlaw Pro Mod Association presented by (DPR Marketing Partner) USA Auto Supply. For this weekend the team fielded only Andrew’s 53 Corvette. Andrew qualified solidly in the number 10 spot with a 6.204 ET… hitting the chutes early. He took the win light over Steve Kramer in the first round. Lady Luck did not seem to ride with Andrew in the second round though. Andrew drifted toward the center line and took a loss to Gary Courtier who went on to the final. Gary then lost to Tyler Hard. Congratulations to Tyler and the team on their win! DPR would like to thank the crew Dave Jordan, Rocco Micciolo, as well as Jon Salemi of Resolution Racing Services for a job well done!
The sport of Drag Racing allows for a great fan experience. The ‘pit pass’ experience for fans is the most amazing part. It also allows DPR as a team to entertain ‘honorable’ guests. This past weekend was no exception. The team hosted an extraordinary gentleman (Veteran) and his son. They run the Keystone Iron Warriors in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania. The team also had the honor of hosting a Vietnam Veteran with many stories to tell. DPR thanks them both for their service to our country.
As many are aware, DPR has a long standing relationship with the Veteran community. After Dina’s ‘unfortunate incident’ in June, it was decided to turn a negative to a positive. And, if you have been keeping up you also know that DPR then began the ‘Stop WRITE Here’ Program shortly after. Fans are encouraged to sign the unpainted nose of Dina’s 63 Corvette and in turn leave a Donation for Indy Honor Flight http://www.indyhonorflight.org/ (Part of the Honor Flight Network).To date, DPR and its fans have assisted two Veterans in making the journey from Indy to DC! The project will continue until the nose is painted.
To add to the hustle bustle of this DPR team Dina has taken on yet another role! Radio co-host!  Dina is the new co-host of the Sam Auxier Jr. Radio Show, beginning Monday September 16th. The show  airs LIVE every Monday night at 7PM EST   http://www.thesamauxierjrshow.com/ .“ My wife is a smart cookie.” Stated Andrew Parise with a smile. “I am always razzing her about her yapping, so I guess she decided to one up me and capitalize on it. It’s certainly her way of doing things.” EyeRoll, followed by a chuckle.
People always ask how DPR can get out there to do what they do. The Advertising Partners are the key to DPR’s success! This team works hard to keep their Advertisers happy! Check out the Advertisers and go ahead and try their products and services! DPR uses them all ! NGK, LAT Racing Oils, CRC Industries, Throttle Threads (the official team uniforms), Neal Chance,  Radical Corvettes ,Hoosier Racing Tire, Browell Bellhousing,USA Auto Supply and  Trailer Valet. Visit here : http://dinapariseracing.com/dina-parise-racing-sponsors   for all their websites and details! Contact DPR to become an Advertising Partner with your business!
Get Social:  Be sure to join DPR on all their Social Media to keep up with them! The  Website will show you the way! So please visit  http://dinapariseracing.com/   to learn more about the DPR team! Then join the team on: Facebook, Twitter Etc… and don’t forget Bella the Wonder Pug on Twitter too https://twitter.com/ProModBella  !

Groovin’ at the Grove and Moving on…..

As many of you know, Maple Grove is a special place for me. It was my first race track that Dina watched me race at and it was the track that brought me back to drag racing. We attended the Super Chevy Show in Maple Grove, and it was a hot, 98 degrees is just crazy. My coffee never got cold, the ice was melting and we were sweating like it was raining out. Not a pretty picture. You wouldn’t expect any fast times in this heat but the cars were doing real well, from 6.11’s on up. I qualified number 3 but we had that gremlin. We changed all the electronics in my 53 Corvette Pro Mod on the last qualifier and oh boy did it have some power. I did a long burnout (got in trouble a bit) But it felt real good. I Let go of the trans brake pedal and sideways I go. Not what I had in mind, but caught up on some reading on the side of Jim Bersani’s Turbo Chevy. Not the first time we have met.

We re-grouped, looked everything over and off to Eliminations and Once again I had to race Jim Bersani. We stage and I go RED! Red? Really? AND, the car goes to the right…. again. But more important I went RED. It has been a long time since I went RED, and I have to tell you it is not a color I like to see. It is hard to take as a driver going red, you not only let yourself down,but your team your fans and then there is the BOSS. For years I was after Dina about sleeping at the tree, now I have to hear about going red. When you let your team and fans down, it really hurts. But, you move on….

Oh Fly away

Well, I had the boss as a crew member this weekend along with Butch and Dave and a special appearance from James Montana. Now, being a driver it is hard to be a crew member. But, Dina belongs in the seat of her 63 Corvette Pro mod and not with a head set on. I think she asked me the same question like 20 times in 5 minutes. ” You okay,You need anything?” Now, we both have the same driving mentality, suit up and shut up. I think she forgot this rule, being the Dina Parise Racing, boss I guess she can do what she wants.

Moving Forward

As you know DPR is all about moving on, and drag racing is changing everyday. From more series to race in to new technology it is being changed everyday. We are making changes to our program that we have seen improvements already. We will be changing much more in the future, can’t give away everything just yet, but it is going to be awesome. I find that annoying Dina more often is key in my daily duties, but more important is looking to improve our team. For me, as some of you know me I get emotional excited at times. We have a great consultant in our camp that is behind the scenes. Jon Salemi (Resolution Racing Services) Aka Johnny Bravo. I watched Bravo in action while we had a major issue and he was calm, cool and relaxed. While I was jumping out of my skin. He has taught me some things already, but the most important is to be less emotional.

The big news in NHRA, Ford is pulling out. We are working hard to obtain marketing partners to compete in NHRA, but you have to provide a return to your partners on their investment. I have talked to many companies about marketing and we hear the same results. We need a change in drag racing, need to have personalities again, bring back the day Scotty Canon called out John Force. Look at NASCAR. the drivers show emotions. Drag racing in my mind is the best sport for marketing partners, fans come directly in our pit area and are face to face with you and your marketing partners. No disrespect to NASCAR, but NASCAR has a logo on a car traveling around a huge track. We need to change the way we use technologies, TV is great but we need more. Only the drivers can make the change. We all know we don’t race for the money, we do it because we love the sport. John Force says he cannot read or add, but he is a marketing expert. His teams are always in the papers, going out of the box and saying what is on his mind. Personality; You can dislike him or love him, but every racer wants to be him. A marketing Guru.

For us, it is hammer down and wide open. Have little time to get ready for the next event and I feel the gray hair growing. We have a lot of work to do but I know we can get back on track. Who knows maybe at the end of the day we come out of Pro Mod and Dina will join Top Fuel. Woops, I think the boss is going to write me up for this!

Catch you on the flip side!

Andrew ‘Bam Bam’ Parise

Athlete’s Voices: Dina Parise Episode 3: Personality VS. Performance the Bottom Line

Here is! Episode 3 of my Athlete’s Voices Column on Double G Sports  

If you have not read 1 and 2, please do.

My Athlete’s Voices Archive: http://doublegsports.com/category/other/athletes-voices/dina-parise/

My column appears on the 20th of each month on http://doublegsports.com/ !

Want to read more from me? Check out my personal blog right here on http://dinapariseracing.com/ , just click on the Blog tab!

 

Athlete’s Voices: Dina Parise Episode 3: Personality VS. Performance the Bottom Line

(August,2013)

Now, don’t let the title fool you. I’m not implying that personality should override performance any day. I have to be on my game at all times. Drag Racing is an exhilarating, yet dangerous sport.

But I think now days it may all come down to semantics. Let me explain.

In the early days of Drag Racing we had such ‘Characters’ as  Shirley ‘Cha Cha’ Muldowney (For those of you not ‘in the know’, she IS the ‘First lady of Drag Racing’), Bill ‘Grumpy Jenkins, Don ‘The Snake’ Prudhomme, ‘Big Daddy’ Don Garlits… The list goes on. There were even famous faces for products. Take for example Linda Vaughn. She became famous and well-loved as the iconic ‘Miss Hurst Golden Shifter’ girl! All of these people with ‘character’ did their jobs well sometimes with a bit of controversy all while representing the product or business supporting their racing (Linda excluded). By all means, it worked! The stands were packed, they were household names  and we were watching them on ABC’s Wide World of Sports . Of course that was before the formation of sports channels as we know them today.

Having had the honor of recently spending time with ‘Big Daddy’, I would like to share this. His influence on racers as well as fans is remarkable. As my husband Andrew and I stood having a conversation with him, (in a public place) regarding motor issues people just began to stop and listen. It was worthy of an E.F. Hutton commercial! That is the type of influence we need to re-create today…. We need to absorb the knowledge that is being passed down and pass it on ourselves to keep our sport thriving.

Our ‘Characters’ or ‘Personalities’ of the early days of Drag Racing in my opinion (and in reality) got the job done. The fans knew what products they were representing yet the drivers were still that, the drivers. Fans patronized said stores and used said products. Goal achieved. As a bit of a ‘Character’ myself I have a hard time stifling my personality at all. I ‘gotta’ be me. As many of you have come to know, I was a professional skater for the ‘Ice Capades’ before I became a professional Drag Racer. So, being ‘understated’ may not be my strong suit. OK, it’s definitely not my strong suit.

It is my observation that in today’s world of motorsports, some are looking too ‘robotic’ for the sake of the corporate world. Oh, ok. I’m going out on a limb here, but it needs to be said. I am pointing out the ‘pink elephant’ in the room, (and I just may be it, HA!)! Why would you take a successful way of doing ‘business’ and change it? Would the WWE survive without personalities? I think not. I understand that ‘times change’. Yes. But human nature remains the same. We are all still human. We still want to be entertained regardless of what swirls around us. We still want to laugh and we still want to become even a bit emotionally invested in something. Anything. We want to cheer the hero, jeer the villain and shake the hand of the winner. It helps to remove us from what ails us in everyday life. Yes, in order to ‘support’ our sport (like most for that matter), Big business is here to stay. I get that. Of course it makes the world-go-round. Although big business pays the bills, I feel we need to remind them (big business) about the actual consumers, who are AKA the fans. And, I believe this translates to all sports and all fans.  I may be a driver, but I am a consumer as well. I have to buy products just like anyone else. Now, would I rather listen to someone with a personality have fun plugging a product, or hear a type of ‘Super Talker’? As a consumer (and a driver), I opt for fun. I tend to tune out on the latter. If you incessantly spew out the same words over and over, I for one begin to tune that out. Being one on one with my fans, let’s me know what works for real people (because I am one). Fans are the consumers. We need to stay in touch with our fans, because ultimately they spend the money, they come to the races and they buy the products that support our sport! If we lose touch, we lose fans. I love my fans and I love my sport. I will continue to pay attention to what the fans want. I just need others to listen, to really make things work. It’s a cycle and we need to keep it revolving.

And keep it revolving I will! I will keep on forging ahead ¼ mile at a time.( That is 1320 Feet for those of you who may play trivia!) It’s always a wild ride, and I would not give it up for anything. So much can happe heading down that 1320 in 6 seconds at 240 MPH you can’t imagine! Pulling 3.4 G’s leaving the line is just the beginning. Learn more about Dina Parise Racing here!  http://dinapariseracing.com/  We promise not to disappoint !

Catch you for the next Episode!

Dina

 

Athlete’s Voices : Dina Parise Episode 2 ‘It’s all about the journey!’

Here it is! Episode 2 of my Double G Sports Athlete’s Voices ‪column!

My Athlete’s Voices Archive: http://doublegsports.com/category/other/athletes-voices/dina-parise/

Learn what makes me and  this DPR team tick!

Athlete’s Voices: Dina Parise, Episode 2: It’s all about the Journey

Positive Action: The hunt for additional Marketing Partners is the equivalent of Movie actors working as waiters while searching for that big break! You work and work with your nose to the grindstone (or motor LOL!) taking nothing for granted, especially not those who stand behind you on a daily basis, while waiting for that break you need. You know it will come, but when? Well, when it does…you will be ready!

You know then the irony of it all is that when you hit the ‘Pinnacle’, everyone will just throw everything at you…. Funny how that happens! It will happen. We are worthy. We are THAT team that makes a difference! That needs to count and it should. We need to know that what we do and how we conduct ourselves has a positive influence on the people around us and the companies we represent. We take it seriously. We keep it positive, always…that is who we are! For now it is “May I take your order please?” But tomorrow….. who knows? Dina Parise Racing -DPR are fierce competitors in our amazing Corvette Pro Mods, and great representatives. We enjoy knowing we can make a difference… one fan at a time! It’s not just about getting to the stripe first , but the journey you take to get there….. Speaking of the journey…..

I’m a chick. I guess you got that. I have a tendency to pay attention, even when people think I am not. My husband Andrew calls me ‘Hawkears and Hawkeyes’. I don’t miss a beat. I like to take everything in, especially when we are at the track. Being female and being a Racecar driver in the public eye also makes me feel as if I am a role model. Uh, oh! Hang on to your hats…… I think I may be headed for a bit of Dina discourse!!!

Ok, here’s the thing…. We are in the Public Eye… If it is me, a Basketball player, Hockey Football etc…. Male or Female. In my eyes we have a responsibility …( Yep, I said responsibility) to be role models for a younger generation and I guess all generations. Like it or not, as Athletes we are looked up to. Therefore that puts us in a position to act accordingly. Now don’t forget, I was a professional figure skater as well. So, I have seen many sides to this argument. I have been in the presence of professional athletes, some of whom were amazing to their adoring public. I have also been in the presence of professional athletes that treated the public as if they were not worthy to breathe the same air as them. Really?  Case in Point; Years ago I met (I will not name names) a professional baseball player. He was so rude to my friend, I could not believe it. I being from NY and growing up with three brothers , had learned to stand up for myself (and others). I put a stop to his rudeness. I will not elaborate. LOL! Let’s just say, he got the point.  I have also met people such as baseball great Lee Mazzilli and he’s as down to earth as they come and a great guy. My point is we as athletes can (and probably will) meet someone once and only once. It can be for a moment. Regardless of whether I am having a great day or a crappy day, all that fan will remember is how I treated them in that moment. I take that seriously. I never want a fan to walk away having had a poor experience.It’s like that saying ‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression.’  My hope is that in any encounter I can empower not only women but everyone to do whatever they dream to do in their lives.  That my friends, is a big part of the journey.

So, I’m off to our next ‘gig’. We have some fun stuff in store for the fans ! I am heading to Maple Grove Raceway July 19th-21st for the Super Chevy Show. Because we have to fit my beautiful ’63 Corvette with a new nose so it is not yet painted with the amazing flag drape the car is known for. So, I thought why not have a little fun? I created the ‘Stop Write Here’ Project to benefit the Honor Flight Network (the project will continue until it is painted!)! Fans will have the opportunity to sign their name (and take a photo of it) on the unpainted nose of the ’63 Corvette and help support an amazing organization all at the same time! As fans arrive in the pit to sign the car and take a photo, DPR will only ask that they make a donation to the Honor Flight Network. Honor Flight Network (http://www.honorflight.org/  ) is a non-profit organization created solely to honor America’s veterans for all their sacrifices. We transport our heroes to Washington, D.C. to visit and reflect at their memorials. . Top priority is given to the senior veterans – World War II survivors, along with those other veterans who may be terminally ill. Honor Flight has many regional hubs to accommodate Veterans.

Now, since I am a chick…. my wish is for the funds  be allocated to  female Veterans. As a driver (and a person), these ladies inspire me. I think this is a great way to give back to them for their service. It’s my way and our DPR team’s way of saying Thank you and you are not forgotten. It’s what makes my journey complete!

I will catch you all in Episode 3! HHHMMM, what will I have in store? Wait and see!

Thanks for reading!

Dina

 

 

 

DPR Gearing up for Maple Grove Super Chevy Show

Honor: high respect, as for worth, merit, or rank. As many of you already know, this Dina Parise Racing team has always honored Veterans and Members of the Armed Forces. The tradition of honoring Veterans is what keeps DPR grounded as a team. This tradition continues as the team heads to the Super Chevy Show at Maple Grove Raceway. Only this time it will not be just a ‘team effort’. The fans will have an opportunity to not only honor Veterans, but to become a part of DPR history.

Glad to be back: After missing the 2012 Super Chevy Show at Maple Grove Raceway, DPR is glad to be headed back to this event! “Maple Grove Super Chevy holds a lot of significance for this team.” Stated Dina Parise “This was my introduction to Drag Racing and the beginning of our team as a whole. We have many fans and friends here. In 2010 I lost the final here to Jimmy Barker. The list goes on.”

Determination: This DPR team has had a bit of a rough 2013 season thus far. But, Dina and Andrew are determined and they are both fierce competitors. ” It’s been a wild ride so far.” Stated Dina Parise “Only problem is I’m looking for a refund on this ride ticket!” She laughs.”Getting back in the groove of things has been a bumpy ride. ” Stated Andrew Parise “But, we will get past it. Well, if my wife and I don’t kill each other first that is!” He laughs.

Who nose? :The DPR team will be at Maple Grove (July 19th-21st) with their sharp looking 1963 and 1953 Pro Mod Corvettes. Well, one may look a bit different this weekend than it has in the past. Dina’s ’63 Corvette is being fitted with a new nose . Of course , it is not painted with the Stars and the flag drape just yet. But, this team will always find a way to turn a negative into a positive! Here’s where the fan participation comes in! “I wanted to give the fans an opportunity to feel they are part of the team, and be able to ‘give back’ at the same time.” Stated Dina.” I think this will be as fun for the fans as it will for us!”

Grab a Sharpie: DPR is proud to announce the ‘Stop Write Here’ Project! Fans will have the opportunity to sign their name (and take a photo of it) on the unpainted nose of the ’63 Corvette and help support a an amazing organization all at the same time! As fans arrive in the pit to sign the car and take a photo, DPR will only ask that they make a donation to the Honor Flight Network. Honor Flight Network (http://www.honorflight.org/) is a non-profit organization created solely to honor America’s veterans for all their sacrifices. We transport our heroes to Washington, D.C. to visit and reflect at their memorials. . Top priority is given to the senior veterans – World War II survivors, along with those other veterans who may be terminally ill. Honor Flight has many regional hubs to accommodate Veterans.

Ladies First: Being that DPR is (as you know) a female owned team Dina’s wish was for the funds  be allocated to  female Veterans. “As a driver (and a person), these ladies inspire me.” Stated Dina “I think this is a great way to give back to them for their service. Our way of saying Thank you and you are not forgotten.”

Attention in the Pits: DPR wants fans as well as fellow racers to take part  in this amazing project to benefit the Honor Flight Network! If  you are a fan walking  through the pits or a racer between rounds, be sure to stop by the DPR pit and participate!

Thank you : People always ask how  DPR  can get out there to do what they do. The Advertising Partners are the key to DPR’s success! This team works hard to keep their Advertisers happy! Check out the Advertisers and go ahead and try their products and services! DPR uses them all ! NGK, LAT Racing Oils, CRC Industries, Throttle Threads (the official team uniforms), Radical Corvettes,  Neal Chance, Hoosier Racing Tire, Browell Bellhousing and Trailer Valet. Visit here : http://dinapariseracing.com/dina-parise-racing-sponsors for all their websites and details! Contact DPR to become an Advertising Partner!  A special Thank You to Hairy Glass for their assistance. http://www.hairyglass.com/

Get Social:  Be sure to join DPR on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DPariseRacing , Twitter https://twitter.com/Dpariseracing  and don’t forget Bella the Wonder Pug too https://twitter.com/ProModBella !

Story by DPR

Photos: Rhonda McCole Photography

 

 

 

 

Back where I belong !

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” Said Albert Einstein .I for one like to live life on the edge. Well,look who I married! That is challenging enough, now add Drag Racing on top of it all and it’s over the top. We all hear about that teams are on the dynos for months, testing new products and ideas behind the curtains and that is what makes this sport amazing. Let me take you back. Back to our early day when we began running  the Converter. Yes I said the “C” word.  Years ago, teams wouldn’t even consider using  a converter. But I did when we first started and still do. Carl Speiring had been running a Converter and I wanted in.It was different,new, a challenge and it was just plan crazy. After a couple of years and hitting it hard we ran a 6.00ET in my ’53 Corvette Pro Mod.  The hard work paid off.  You have to try new things, even if you make mistakes.  Trust me, we have made many …. My oh my… its hard to say that ‘M’ word when your perfect. HA HA! Mistakes, happen. I got married, Divorced ReMarried again. And as you know… this one’s trouble! First, my wife wants to race Super Comp. Wife says “I wanna go faster.”. Next wants to race Pro Mod. Wife goes 6.09  in her ’63 Corvette `and says it was slow, husband goes gray and becomes numb.Are you feeling my pain yet?

 

We had to miss the most recent race at Maple Grove Raceway but we will be ready for Super Chevy at Maple Grove July 19th- 21st. I cannot wait to get behind the wheel again, it has been way too long. Maple Grove is a special place for me. It was the first racetrack I attended when I decided to come back to drag racing and where I met my good friend Dave Tomasino. Dave and I became great friends over the years and I had the honor of crewing for him and others when the Nitro Coupes competed at Super Chevy Shows. Here’s some great Super Chevy…. history, shall we say! I was lending a hane to Bruce Boland during a Super Chevy Show a few years back. Bruce  and Mike Swinarski were teammates at the time. I was one guy helping to start two supercharged cars. I started Mike’s car and… it shut off. We got it restarted and went over to start Bruce. I now realize the fuel bottle to start the car was not full so we had very little left.  As some of you may know, I am vertically challenged.I had to lean way over to start Bruce’s car. The car launched forward threw me a couple feet and I landed on my rump. Well, Dina is laughing so hard she is crying and Bruce is laughing as well.I was looking around as to see if the Super Chevy crew got any pics of that. Well, let me just say my rump was hurting. The point of all of this is, racing has brought me a new family beginning with the Super Chevy Show and Maple Grove. Every racer has that special track and for me The Grove is it. It brought me back to racing.  Let me give you the first day of my Back to the Race track experience. I had to buy, truck, trailer, tools everything you need to go racing. We leave the hotel, and off we go. Now, My crew chief (at the time) and second father Brud Bennake was telling me the game plan. We arrive at Maple Grove, go to roll the car out of the trailer and it has a flat tire. Well, that was it for me, I was so mad. I walked around a bit, complained to Brud, when he flipped his wig and said, “Take the tire off and get it fixed!” I replied with how we going to get it there. Well, if you ever saw Brud open fire on you, you would run for the hills. His reply was “take the tire, put it on the scotter and get it fixed” But he looked as if had a sunburn with tomato paste on his face, from aggrivation. Oh, did I mention he is 6 ft 4inches over 230 pounds, he has a grip that is worse then vise grips. So, I tried not to piss him off any more than I already had.  Maple Grove has a lot of great memories for me, this is where Dina got to see her first Drag Race and realized she wants to race. Hummm.. I’m not sure if that is a ‘good’ memory. Debatable at best.

 

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.” -said Mother Teresa.  We don’t focus on the past as a race team or in life in general. You have to move forward every minute of everyday. I have always lived with the statement, “If you didn’t learn one thing today you should have stayed in bed”.I spent over 20 years in Corporate America .And yes,I have to laugh when people say to me, “I cant see you in Corporate America” .For some time I was not sure how to take that.Was it an insult? I don’t really think so. For years I dedicated a lot of my time to the Corporate America, missing family functions, birthdays, holidays and not realizing I was changing as a person. After being out of Corporate America for almost 2 years now my eyees are a bit more open.For instance, we went to a local restaurant that we have been customers of for years . The manager tells me it is great to see you laugh, I never saw you really laugh. Have you ever hit yourself with a hammer by accident or stubbed your toe and feltl that pain. Well, to me this was the equivalent of dropping a cement boulder on my head. I had to ask Dina, “Was I really ‘That Guy’?” She shot me a look (you know..the Italian girl stare…) and I knew the answer.  I have no regrets about working in Corporate America. It taught me a lot.But the one thing it taught me was “Never Change” . Look, you live once. It took us years to have what we have and if you take all the toys away what are you left with? Your family and friends that will stick behind you through thick and thin.  So, everyday I work on being a better person and going back to the old person I once was. Not sure Dina will like that too much, I am sure she will put a stop to some things.

 

Well its time to kick it into high gear for DPR.. No, really ! The boss only gives me a certain amount of time to write a blog. So, I’m back to getting ready for Maple Grove. It is going to be a great event with amazing people. The second quarter for DPR is going to be amazing and I am looking forward to seeing everyone.

 

~Andrew