In drag racing diversity is the norm

 

If you ‘cruise’ the pits at a drag race the sights and sounds can be mind-numbing. There is the distinct smell of alcohol in the air. Exhaust becomes a cheap cologne that is essentially a ‘gift with ticket purchase’. The constant hum of motors revving has an almost musical tone to it. From classical to hard rock, it’s your choice. You will notice the diversity in vehicle choices. Probably one of the coolest features about drag racing cars IS their diversity! At the dragstrip one will encounter a staggering number of cars that range in age, make and model as well as material. Some boast original bodies while others are reproductions. None the less, the racers will race them, talk about them and show them proudly.

Vehicles and motors aside. What is the most important component to the drag racing equation? The people of course! As you know I have spent a day or two at the drag strip. If I am there to race or to spectate, there is always something I take away from it; how diverse our sport actually is.

Drag racing is and has almost always been ahead of the curve as far as diversity is concerned. That in and of itself is an accomplishment that has quite frankly gone un-noticed. Look, no disrespect to NASCAR, but we (drag racing) do not need a Diversity Program to bring female and multicultural athletes in. We are there. We have been there for quite some time. Black, White, Male, Female and pick a cultural background. Don’t forget our Import racers! Many are of Puerto Rican decent. I could go on… Let’s just say, drag racing has it and more!

Even when I’m racing, I do like to cruise the pits when we have some downtime. This past weekend I met up with two great ladies that inspired me to write this blog reinforcing why I love this sport so much. They are the epitome of why this sport is diverse. Not just because they are female. There is more to it than that!

As many of you may know, I was formerly a skater for the famed Ice Capades. Yes. I was a ‘Show Girl’. They say you can take the girl out of the show but you can’t take the show out of the girl. There is quite a bit of truth to that! I was also a licensed hairdresser for many years. That was what I did during the week and proceeded to race a Pro Mod on the weekends. At one point someone deemed me Claire Kent. Oddly, I thought it fit! My background certainly lends itself to the diversity factor in our sport.

Cruising the pits this past weekend, I passed a bright pink Pinto that read ‘Teacher’s Pet’ and I had to stop. Who does not like a Pink Pinto? The driver’s name is Jessica. She proceeded to tell me she had been a 4th grade teacher and was now a librarian. A librarian by day, a racer on the weekend. Yes, too cool. I bet the kids love it too!

 

Then I met Jenna. We bonded over our fur babies. Bella and Dixie did meet although Dixie seemed a bit put off by Bella’s smushed Pug face! As for her racing, she was running her Mustang in 4 classes (yes 4) along with her Dad. She and her Dad race together quite often. Another fact about her that I found so fun and impressive! They did manage to bring home 6 trophies between the two of them when all was said and done! As you can see in the photo, she was loaded to go. Reason being, she had work on Monday. You see, she’s a payroll clerk. she will head to work Monday but you can bet you will see her out here again next Saturday!

As for other racers I know of with various backgrounds; one transports Koi fish and my husband worked in the IT field for many years……. Diversity.

There is diversity everywhere in our sport. Fans included. I love the fans! Recently in Palm Beach I met two gentlemen that stopped in our pit because they were aware that Stella was going to be making her way down the track. You see, they were both Cadillac CTS-V owners. To boot they owned the only two manual versions in Palm Beach! Since I do shift Stella, I became an honorary member of their little ‘club’!

It is rare to have a negative fan experience. Rare but not non-existent. I have to say that I cannot let this mixed bag of metal and mortals fool me. There is always a leftover Neanderthal creeping around with his knuckles still dragging and a sideways comment. Frankly I am always up for that type of challenge. It keeps me sharp. Let me entertain you with the exchange that took place in the staging lanes this past weekend. Here goes. “Well girl, don’t you think that’s just too much motor for you?” states the Neanderthal as he circles Stella as if stalking his prey. “Since it’s the second one I’ve driven and owned,” I said “I would say no. And the addition of power is more fun for me.” At that point his friends began to give him the ‘choke’ sign. He then tried to speak to me as if I had no idea what I was driving. To be honest, this is rare. So is what I am about to tell you my response was. But, it did the trick. He begins to throw out numbers regarding Horsepower with no apparent knowledge of what he was referencing. He then tried to make a point about the Supercharger unfortunately confusing it with a Pro Charger. All the while speaking to me in a demeaning tone. I listened politely. More politely than he deserved. I needed to put a stop to it. Not because I wanted to ‘one up ‘ him, but because he needed to know that it was unacceptable to treat anyone that way. No matter their gender. I decided to quash it. In my own way I did with a bit of cheeky humor and a slight left jab. In a conversational voice and with a smile I said,  “You know, if I sat you in there and gave one wop to that throttle it would send you running home to your Mamma.” As I said. I never go there. But every once and a while we need to show that our girlie muscles are bigger than their big boy bully muscles. It’s rare but it happens. With that it ended. His friends dispersed but not without bursting into fits of laughter. He licked his wounds, put his tail between his legs and went on his way. I can bet he will just politely ask questions next time at the least that is my hope.

Back to my original point. The next time you attend a race, don’t just watch and listen to the cars. Watch and listen to the drivers themselves. Ask them what they do beyond the 1320. It may surprise you, fool you and or impress you! You will enjoy the sights and sounds even more!

See you at the races!

Keyboard Crew Chiefs …No wrench necessary

It has been said that opinions are like butt holes. Everyone has one but you may not necessarily want to see (or hear) them. Again, I find myself expressing my love/hate relationship with social media, especially the ‘anonymity’ and ‘beer muscle’ mentality of it.

RIGHT on TARGET: The climate of the world today seems to be; build them up just to tear them down. From ‘hero to zero’ in an instant. Those driving (or playing) from the preverbal ‘couch’ no longer see the human on the racetrack (or playing field). What they now seem to see, is a target. A target for their hateful words and play by play descriptions of how ‘they’ would have been better equipped to play out whatever (unfortunate) scenario just unfolded before them.

Recently I observed the ‘ Keyboard Crew Chief ‘ mentality in all its splendor. It seems racing (Drag Racing in particular) is a sport that can be performed from behind the keyboard as well as from behind the wheel. Yes, you read that correctly. Of course…. I will explain.

INSULT WITH or WITHOUT INJURY: As we all know racing is a dangerous and at times unpredictable sport. In the blink of an eye, a car can be wadded up like an old newspaper. Thankfully recent events although horrific were a testament to the safety of these race cars because drivers were able to walk away unharmed, well physically anyway. I say that because they may walk away without a scratch but they better not dare to go on Social Media one second after their said incident because that is where the injury ensues. It’s not bad enough that a driver has just seen his or her life flash before their eyes, they are now being schooled as to what caused their situation as well as what they should and shouldn’t have done. Couple that with being called horrible names as if they are in the schoolyard at recess facing the class bully. I’m guessing that is all in a day’s work for  ‘ Keyboard Crew Chiefs ‘? Perfection must be exhausting.

RESPECT: Now look. I am not saying that while watching a game, I never said, “Oh, why did he do that” or gave my ‘version’ of what I thought the play should have been. Yes, I have been a coach in the spur of the moment in my living room, not going to lie. I’m sure we all do it! What I believe needs to stop is publicly berating and humiliating those whose performance is deemed less than satisfactory. That determination is being made by the likes of those with little or no experience in the very subject matter they are critiquing. If you are not driving that car or making the play, it is very difficult to begin to understand what transpired at that very moment. We need to begin to respect one another for who they are and what they do. If we do not treat one another with respect as adults, what is that teaching the younger generation?

ACCENTUATE the POSITIVE: Respect and sportsmanship go hand in hand. If children read and are influenced by the awful posts that are so readily available to them, it is just the beginning of a lifetime of thinking that behavior is acceptable. If you think they are not reading it, you are wrong. Not to say we can be an ‘Ozzy and Harriet’ society, but we can surely be more respectful. Social Media while a great place to make friends and build fan bases can be a very dark place full of negativity. Somehow this is me in my futile effort to ‘accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative’. Well, a girl can dream can’t she?

STEP 1. ADMITTING the PROBLEM: If while reading this piece you have taken the first step and recognize the signs of yourself as being a ‘Keyboard Crew Chief’, you can get help. It is a treatable disorder. The treatment is to the point, and will get you on the road to recovery quickly! No meetings needed here. You can accomplish this in the privacy of your own home. All you will need is to go out and purchase a Bug Zapper. To begin your recovery, while watching the next Drag Race be sure to have the zapper plugged in. If an unfortunate incident occurs you may have the urge to post an idiotic comment on Social Media. Here’s where the Bug Zapper comes in. When the idiotic comment urge arises, just lean into the Bug Zapper and stick your tongue out. ZAP it! After a couple of rounds with the Zapper, problem solved! The world is now a happier place!

Disclaimer: Do NOT try this at home. This is merely my attempt at humor and NOT a diagnosis or treatment regimen.

Life is for Living and Racing

The 2015 Dina Parise Racing season is under way. Teams are getting their last minute items completed and before we know it racing will be in full swing. Things are flying by lately, the days are nights and the nights are days, you know when you have to ask what day is it, you are shot.

 

The new business (Andi-Con Performance) is coming together, all the pieces are coming together nicely. Just taking a little more time then I had planned. We are OPEN for business as of February 9th with a grand opening planned for in April. It is going to be a huge opening with a car show, great food and of course show off the new business. I worked in Corporate America for over 20 years, wore many hats during that period. Someone told me a long time ago, you won’t get rich working for someone else and it is very true. But isn’t all about the money, I want to be excited about what I do, provide a reason for waking up and going to work. With this new adventure I look forward to making a difference.

 

I cannot wait to go testing with the Dina Parise Racing Cadillac CTSV. We have to finish some new things and make our final changes. It has been way too long and can’t take looking at everything sitting still. Living in PA has the same weather as NY but it has some serious winds which makes it extremely cold. I hate the cold, did I tell you…. I hate the cold. Well the cold is close to Mushrooms which gross me out. Anyway, running one car is going to be a lot of fun this year and different. We run a converter so our maintenance is bit easier than the guys with the clutches. But who knows what the future brings. I was always the guinea pig, well now the boss can be. Plus, not driving is going to give me a lot of time be a thorn in the side to the boss.

 

2015 seemed like it was going okay, until I got a call that my father had a major stroke, he was found by my middle brother sitting in the car in a supermarket parking lot. He was there for 6 hours in 20 degree weather. My family has a bad health history with my mother dying at the age of 53 to Cancer, my grandmother had a stroke and now this. As many know my father and I have different outlooks in life and had major differences. He has helped many people in his life. He was a Lt. Col in the Air Force and an Art teacher. He was recovering well for a bit but then took a turn for the worse and passed on. I was an Altar boy (in the Catholic Church) at one time. Yes Me an Altar Boy. This was fun as we found out the red stuff was really good wine. All I can say is don’t drink the wine before a funeral mass. When you ring the bells, it doesn’t mean let’s dance. Just saying.. Anyway, I don’t go to church as often as I should, but I do believe my mother is kicking his ass right now about a lot of stuff.

 

So, this brings to me to something near and dear to me. You have to remember where you came from and live your life. When my mother died I swore I would live my life to its fullest. I have some things I still want to accomplish but I have done a lot of things. To have to live within your means is well,  a bit overrated. I am not saying go out and max your credit card. All  I am saying go and buy something new now and then. You never know, by the time you read the end of this blog it could be your last breath. It’s a scary thought but it’s true. Maybe that’s why I drive a Pro Mod, but that may change too. You can’t live saying ‘what if’ and ‘shoulda , coulda, woulda’ all your life, I have lived like that and it is boring. You might as well wrap yourself in bubble wrap before you leave the house. Go out and live. Do something different each day. Don’t wait for something to happen so you can say I should have did things differently. Go make your statement.

 

Now, back to reality or somewhat reality; DRAG RACING!!!! We have many choices to race, NHRA,IHRA,PDRA and other venues. I hear all the chatter about how one organization should control rules or why there isn’t a standard set of rules for all classes. Why is the speed limit different in every state, why are the taxes different in every state, why are NY property tax so high. An even playing field is great if everyone can play on the same field at the same time. But not everyone can play on that field at the same time nor can some afford to. The Pro Mod group has a “buy in” then you have to pay NHRA their fee for each race. Maybe this is the future, I don’t know. IHRA and PDRA have no buy in, just a cost to enter the race. My point to this is each series has different rules to accommodate different racers. Is one right or one wrong? I don’t know. Choose what works for ‘you’.

 

It is going to be a great year of racing in every series, from Nitro to Sportsman. I miss my racing family and can’t wait to get back on the track as a C… Cr….. Crew member. WOW, that was hard to say.

Stay warm and see everyone soon.

See Ya 2014-Dina Parise Racing

Well, 2014 is over. It has been one tough and long year for us (Dina Parise Racing) and many others. It was a year that we lost many friends, a family member and racers. It was one of those years that just seems like you are driving through thick fog. But like they say, you have to take the bad with the good. This year was one giant road trip for me, from North Carolina to New York to Pennsylvania to somewhere else. I have a new respect for long haul truckers. We can finally call a state home. The state of  Pennsylvania.

I grew up old school ; I  say thank you, I open doors for a lady, I will give up my seat. Those days are long gone in many areas but the people here in Pa still live by old school values. The first time someone said good morning to me, I was like, ‘What do you want? You talking to me?’ It took me a couple days but I realized that I am home. It was a nice change. I do miss the food in NY but we are close enough to Maryland which has good restaurants, but the boss said we have to go on a diet after Christmas. She said she wants a fit backup boy. Hmmmm… I guess that was a dig on my current look.

IHRA, announced the come back of Pro Mod for 8 races at the PRI Show. We attended the meeting in the media room at PRI and it was a packed house. The management team did a great job of bringing back Pro Mod to its grass roots with a full time sponsor, Crower. I think this is going to be a great program with a large turnout. I know everybody will be watching as well as commenting. We are sure it will be run well,but just like any other series perfection takes time. They have a series sponsor (Crower) that has been in business for over 40 years, and a management team that is going above and beyond and have booked some of the best tracks around. I shouldn’t have taken this year off, I might have to move the Bosses pedals in her car (OK, don’t tell her that). With IHRA,NHRA and PDRA it is going to be a great year of Pro Mod racing. We will be focusing on IHRA and PDRA, we don’t have the points to enter NHRA nor will we spend a year obtaining them running divisional races.

So, we have been busy working on the new shop (Andi-Con Performance), well I have been busy not sure what Dina has been doing. Andi-Con is coming together well and will open this month. It is going to be a great new adventure for us. I will be working side by side with Dina, racing together, traveling together. What the hell did I get myself into?  The shop is coming together nicely, the boss has her office, smart TV, new computer, personal heater and I have white hair. I need a dye job, my hair is white not gray anymore. It is a lot of work opening a new business. You burn thru money quickly. What seems off is our first gas bill. For heating the shop (at a toasty 50 degrees) our first bill was $1200.00. Really? I have to work in an eskimo suit with heated socks. But in the end it will work out. I am really excited about the new shop and all of the vendors coming on board.

While I won’t be driving next year, I will be driving everyone nuts on and off the track. When your a driver it is hard to watch, but this is the year of DPR. I predict that Dina will be in the winner circle this season. We aren’t going to the race track to watch. We are going to win. I want our family, Marketing Partners, friends and fans  all in the winner circle with us. In 2015 you will see a new team, new look, new attitude and we are bringing our ‘A’ game. We have a lot of new things coming about in 2015 and it is going to be awesome. ‘Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.’ or as Dina says ‘Drives like a Cadillac , stings like a V!’

2015 is going to be a great year. Look for the grand opening of Andi-Con Performance shortly. You are all more then welcome to join the fun at the open house we plan on having. We are testing  the boss’s Cadillac starts shortly and so does the strict diet and gym. 2015 is going to be a great year. Be on the lookout!

See you at the Races,

Andrew ‘Bam Bam’ Parise

Dina Parise Racing welcomes USA Auto Supply

         Dina Parise Racing welcomes USA Auto Supply

 

 

 

Andrew Parise has other nicknames besides ‘Bam Bam’, one of them is ‘Shiney’. Yes you read that correctly, ‘Shiney’. Andrew has an obsession with keeping all the Parise’s vehicles clean enough to eat a good Italian meal off of. Race cars can be a challenge to keep clean, but in the Dina Parise Racing camp cleanliness is next to … well, you know!

To look your best, you need superior products. USA Auto Supply carries those products. USA Auto Supply has been a supporter of Dina Parise Racing for many years. For the 2015 season, owner Ivan Mejias has decided to increase his support of the team to becoming a Marketing Partner. http://www.usaautosupply.com/

“Having USA Auto Supply on board as a Marketing Partner is very exciting for our team,” states Dina Parise. “They sell a myriad of amazing cleaning products as well as paint. All cleaning products are produced and tested by Ivan himself.” Said Dina

“USA Auto Supply is very happy to be stepping up our support of DPR.” Stated Ivan Mejias. “They (DPR) are true Marketing ‘Partners’. This team knows how to bring the consumers to the product. In the end, that is the main objective.” Said Ivan.

“I don’t like dirty vehicles, “stated Andrew Parise. “ I am bit OCD about keeping things clean. I have to admit, USA Auto Supplies’ products make my job easy, certainly easier than dealing with the boss!” He laughs.

One particular product, for the racers out there is USA Auto Supply’s ‘Tar Remover’ product that is second to none! This product removes (tire) rubber from the wheelie bars as well as the car itself without blemishing the paint. In addition, the Spray Waxes, Chrome Polishes, Tire Shine and Leather Cleaners (to name a few) work well for all car enthusiasts. From inside to out, these products will keep your vehicle looking show worthy! Not only do the products work well, they are priced well. You will not have to break the bank to look your best!

“Our DPR team has been utilizing USA Auto Supply products for years.” Stated Dina “We are proud to also announce that we will be carrying their products at Andi-Con Performance as well. Providing cutting edge products to our customers, fans and fellow racers is what we are all about.”

People always ask how the DPR team can get out there to do what they do. Of course their Marketing Partners are the key to DPR’s success! The DPR 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! Thank you to NGK, LAT Racing Oils, USA Auto Supply, Bell Helmets, DJ Safety, Stainless Works, Speedwire Systems, , Matheis Race Cars Inc., Hoosier Racing Tire, CRC Industries and Coast 2 Coast Cuisine TV for their support throughout the season and beyond! Visit here: http://dinapariseracing.com/marketing-partners for all their websites and details! Contact DPR to become a Marketing Partner as well! Let DPR work for you!

Get Social: Be sure to join the DPR team on all their Social Media! Their 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, Instagram and Twitter and don’t forget to check out Andi-Con Performance at https://www.facebook.com/AndiConPerformance and https://twitter.com/andiconperform .

 

dpr_logo_b_rev_for_web

 

 

 

 

Andrew and Dina’s Excellent Adventure!

Well,  another year gone and the travel for us is almost over. We finally found a new building for the race team and Andi-Con Performance.Time to start a new adventure in our lives. I worked in Corporate America for 20 years and it has taught me a lot. I have learned how to treat (and not treat) people to what Corporate America is really about. Being in Senior Management opens your eyes to so much. One thing for sure is you will not become rich. Most importantly Corporate America does not allow you to be in charge of your own destiny.

So after months of looking for a new building we finally landed one in New Freedom,PA. The community has welcomed us with open arms.  This area is certainly a ‘motorhead’ mecca . They have car shows often, many local racers and real great people. With this new adventure Dina has decided to open Andi-Con Performance (From Street Rods to Pro Mods , as well as show cars! Bolt on Performance to Safety equipment.. Let Andi-Con be your go to Performance shop!)For my part… it was either go back to be being a Corporate chair, which was hard to do or open a business and work for ourselves. I figured I already have gray hair, why not push the envelope and make a difference.

Now, we are working our butts off to get all the pieces and parts together, finish the 7,200 sq foot shop so we can have a grand opening. In the midst of that, we will have Dina’s Cadillac at the PRI Show in Stainless Works booth (#3957). I am so excited for this show as we will be showing off her car and meeting with vendors for the shop.

We took the Cadillac out to test at VMP. The track was on kill as always.The testing went well, but we had to cut it a bit short due to issues out of our control. Never the less, we are looking forward to 2015. There are changes on the horizon.

I will not be driving in 2015 , I will be taking the year off. The 1953 Corvette has been sold to a great couple in Texas who will be racing it. It is going to be in great hands. She will be extremely missed. We are building a new car for the following season, that is what the boss tells me.  Trust me, I want to race and more importantly want to race Dina and put her on the trailer (for me that’s double duty!). The rivalry is still alive and well. So, this coming year I am taking my BAMBAM attitude and applying it to Dina driving her Cadillac. It is the year of DPR and Take No Prisoners. I love the fans, the competition and most of the racers but when it’s race time, it’s ‘Rocky’ Time. In the words of Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) “Life’s not about how hard of a hit you can give… it’s about how many you can take, and still keep moving forward.”

Moving seems pretty easy for me, I really have noting to do as Dina coordinates everything. I just have to get the movers, cancel a couple of items, change address (oh, Dina reminded me…She did that as well) and off I go. Well, this is the never ending trip. We were orginally moving to NC, but after months of research and not being able to find what we wanted we decided on PA. I am not excited about the cold weather or snow, but you have to take the good with the bad. Anyway, our last week in NY, I had to go for a quick root canal. So I thought. The day after root canal I woke up not feeling well at all. I had to run a couple errands and got sick.(this next bit is not for the faint at heart!) Thank god I had a coffee cup in the truck. I got home and handed it to Dina. Now I think about it, it is funny. She wasn’t too delighted about it. But, the saga continued…Well I had to go the doctor and I had a nose and ear infection that put me in bed for 5 days. Now On the way home from Dr. J. Rotolo’s I got sick again and in her new car. Glad she had a bag in the car. Initially, we were scheduled to move Thursday which had to be rescheduled to the following week. The final kick to our week was coming home after my last root canal visit and Bella felt left out and decided she was going to slip a disc in her back. It has been a fun week, seems NY did not want us to go!

So, look for ANDICON coming soon and if your headed to PRI stop by and see the hottest Pro Mod Cadillac! Oh ya and the driver, she is okay too. Can you believe I have the same boss at two different companies. I was told it’s a 7 day a week  job, so much for having weekends off. 2015 is going to be one hell of a year. You won’t want to miss it.

See you out there!

Bam Bam

Dina Parise; Putting the Human Back in the Being

 

In light of recent ‘events’ I have decided to pen what I am about to…. But, of course I will not react the way you may think. If you have been following me, you know I think out of the box and I don’t hold back. So put your DJ Safety Belts on tight and your Bell Helmet on (yes, shameless plugs)… this will be a wild ride!

You know that I do not only write about my Dina Parise Racing team. Sometimes, I feel the need to address other subjects and issues. This would be one of those moments.* Before I begin, let me say that our thoughts are with all involved and our sincerest condolences go out to the Ward family.*

Unless you have been living under a rock, I am sure you are aware of the incident at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park on August 9th that involved Tony Stewart and resulted in the death of Kevin Ward Jr. As in any situation there are variables just as in what happened here. I cannot give you any particulars, you know why? Because I (just like many of those commenting) was not there. I could very well give you an ‘opinion’ just as every ‘Tom, Dick and Harriet’ did regarding what happened, but you know what, I will not. You know why? Because I actually cannot make a clear opinion on what happened because……..Again I (like most) was not there. I did not witness what happened first hand.

Millions of now ‘self-proclaimed’ experts have viewed an amateur video shot at night from a distance and come to their own conclusions. I get having an opinion, but in this day of Social Media and ‘Keyboard Cowboys’ it goes far beyond that. Being behind a computer screen really does bring out the ‘beer muscles’. This has not only become a witch hunt of sorts, but on the flip side the deceased driver has been disrespected as well. Apparently the viewing public now deems the CSI show as educational and they have all become graduates! Forgive me, but even as a driver, I do not feel I can make a determination as to what went on during that incident. The only determination that can be made is that a driver exited his car on a ‘hot’ track, and a tragedy ensued.

We cannot as a society be judge, jury and executioner via our computer terminals. Many on Social Media (as well as some news outlets) have become the ‘Judge Judy’s’ of cyberspace and beyond. Not just regarding this issue, either. Computers have taken the ‘ human’ out of the ‘beings’. The lack of human interaction is creating a less sympathetic and compassionate society. At times, I find myself having to just shut down my computer when a big news story hits. My shutdown is due to people no longer finding it in their vocabulary (or hearts) to speak/write with any compassion or manners and obviously feeling no guilt in doing so. Look, I am going to be very frank here. We all know the saying…. Opinions are like Buttholes, everyone has them…. Hence, they don’t necessarily need to be seen, right? Are you getting my point?

In the end (ah, no pun intended) we can only hope that this tragedy will bring about changes that will keep drivers (of all motorsports) safe in the future. In the motorsports community especially, I believe that we need not have knee jerk reactions, but some change is needed. From here on out let’s be pro-active rather than re-active to avoid future tragedies. I witness ‘procedures’ within my own sport of Drag Racing that I deem to be dangerous. For example; crewmembers standing next to a 2,600LB.(give or take) door car, and feeling the need to assist the vehicle during the burnout process. By that I refer to crewmembers holding and pushing the rear of the car on either side. I for one will not allow my crewmembers to do that. With tires spinning at that velocity, what if a pant leg was to get caught, a mechanical malfunction, a blown tire? Anything can happen in our sport at any time. And, it has. My belief is that this is something those in our industry should no longer be doing in the name of safety, but that’s just me.

We are looking forward to the long awaited debut of the DPR Cadillac CTSV Pro Mod. She is just about completed so stay tuned for that! Thank you to Paint by Bruce Mullins for making her look so good! *Here is a Sneak Peek!

People always ask how our DPR team can get out there to do what we do. Our Marketing Partners are the key to DPR’s success! This team works hard to keep our Advertisers happy! Check out the Advertisers and go ahead and try their products and services! DPR uses them all! Thank you to NGK, LAT Racing Oils, CRC Industries, Bell Helmets, DJ Safety, Stainless Works, Speedwire Systems, USA Auto Supply, Matheis Race Cars Inc., Hoosier Racing Tire and Coast 2 Coast Cuisine TV for their support throughout the season and beyond! Visit here: http://dinapariseracing.com/marketing-partners for all their websites and details! Contact DPR to become a Marketing Partner as well! Let DPR work for you!

Get Social: Be sure to join me and my DPR team on all our Social Media! Our 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, Instagram and Twitter and don’t forget Bella the Wonder Pug too https://twitter.com/ProModBella !

Thank for reading!

See you at the races!

Dina Parise~DPR

Truth be Told, and It Ain’t Pretty…

Well, the boss said “Hey you haven’t written anything in a while”. My answer? “ I will write you a poem.” Well, that wasn’t what she meant.

I’m not going to bore you with details of my 30K worth of miles in road trips in the last 3 months. But I can warn you not to go on a diet and sit in traffic. You will be a bit edgy, Holly mother! I have been on a cleanser for 10 days then every other day. It works, but it is the consistency of sand. It is green powder and some other unidentifiable stuff. You don’t want to be in traffic after having your ‘sand’ drink.

I know everyone (Dina Parise Racing included) is waiting for the new Cadillac (CTSV Pro Mod) to debut. But right now it is under wraps being painted (by Paint by Bruce Mullins). It is coming out amazing. Perfection takes time and everybody involved in this project wants it perfect. For years I have had the better car, making it look easy to get down the track. I was told many years ago a bad car will make a good driver look bad. Well, I know my wife can drive better then me. I don’t like to admit it, but she can pedal much better then me and beats me off the starting line every time. It pisses me off so bad, yet I love racing her. I have beaten her many times and have the Wally and the AA/PM record to prove it (Yes, I love rubbing that in). This new car is going to be just like a real Cadillac except for the couple things. Engine, Seats, Rug okay more then a couple. But outwardly, there is no mistaking, it’s a Cadillac. You will all have to wait and see it for yourselves.

Have you seen the new DPR Logo? Everyday she is coming up with something new for us to do. Driving around the world, finding a shop getting things in motion and on top of it all, the boss decides it rebranding time. Sure, we have a huge employee list to take that on (uh, not) but really, we just need to hit the lotto. But seriously, when she is right she is right. I just don’t tell her that she is.

Rob Matheis (Matheis Race Cars Inc.) built the Cadillac and is one of the best in chassis building and fabrication. He builds everything from motorcycles to cars.Did you know he fabricated a lipstick holder in Dina’s new Cadillac? Yes. Seriously, who puts a lipstick holder in a Pro Mod? Well, my wife for one, but Rob provides such attention to detail that giving the customer what they request is key (as long as safety is not compromised). That seems hard to find today. We are a team that doesn’t play games, and Rob and his team are the same way. At the end of the day it is a business.

So, it has been a tough year. We haven’t been able to secure a shop so no racing for us yet. We are close to closing a deal but ’till I have the keys in hand I wont believe it. We have a lot of things going on as always but they are big things. I promise to let you know as soon as possible as it is going to be huge.

I rarely get personal, but I can’t help myself. In life we work, live, pay bills and try to be the best we can be. We have family and friends who don’t believe in our goals or our choices in life. How many people told John Force he should quit, or How about Bunny Burkett or Don Garltis. All of these people had a dream and worked to make a difference. How about Steve Jobs, or Bill Gates. These people not only had dreams but they had passion for what they believe in. They found people to support them and believe in their passion. The ones that didn’t well let’s say they are looking from the sidelines.

I always dreamed of driving for a team, but I had no family support. Growing up I was the baby. I have two older brothers. One is 6’ 5” weighing 300 pounds and the other 6’1” weighing 200 pounds. Me, I’m only 5’6, I was out sized and weight was not on my side. But I was a smart ass and kept things exciting. Plus I couldn’t do anything wrong in my mothers eyes (oddly still not to my Mother-in-law either!). My Mom got cancer and I had to take care of her for a while when I was 18, she died when I was 20 yrs old. It was a tough time for me, but I never lost that want to drive. My point to this story is here it is 25 years later and I still have that desire to drive inside me. Regardless of the people in life telling me to quit and walk away. Don’t let anyone and I mean anyone take away your passion or dreams. My mom was my life; she would do anything for her family. Not only was she a fighter but only wanted the best for her kids. Fight for what you want.

Well, lately we have heard a lot on the future of NHRA from many influential people. Now we all Know Larry Morgan is a very laid back quiet guy. So, here is my take on some things. Okay, forget NHRA for a second. Drag Racing on a whole I feel has so much more to offer marketing partners. NASCAR is good, but we (Drag Racing) are better. You can’t get within a ½ mile of a NASCAR driver unless you are the sponsor or you have a ‘golden ticket’ so to speak. The fans are what make the show. The look on there faces, hanging out with the kids and signing autographs. I was asked once by a gentleman, how I drive by both cars. I pointed to Dina and said my wife drives that car. He said have a nice day, sir and ran over to talk to Dina. That to me is priceless. Dina cooks Italian food in our pits and sometimes we feed 30 people. The fans at times become your family. We have the Best show in the world. Now, I know a lot of people dislike the man Former President of ADRL. Kenny Knowling. But one thing for sure, he knew how to keep you entertained. He had pre parties, race day parties and fan interaction; Something lacking now.

So, I am going to get myself into some hot water here (nothing new, frankly).Don’t take this as bashing, take this as TRUTH. Everyone walks on eggshells and is afraid to say what needs to be said. NHRA is a not-for profit but their upper management team makes high Six figure incomes. The cost to race at NHRA is ridiculous for teams and ticket prices are way too high for the average family. To race at an NHRA event you have to pay for a license AND your magazine subscription and of course your entry fee. Oh if you don’t have enough points you have to spend a ton of money on divisional races (Pro Mod). The payouts are a joke, but nobody is doing this for the money, we do it because we are crazy and we love it. NHRA will never change until you change management. I worked in Corporate America for 20 years, if you didn’t produce results you were gone. If sales went down, upper management was let go. The Indians listen to the Chiefs but if the Chiefs are lost then what happens? What would happen if Don Schumacher decided he is done racing? John Force cant drive forever, he will try. What is the answer for NHRA? It starts at the top of the chain. You can only sit in your Air conditioned office for so long till they close the doors. When a Reality racing TV show comes along and has more viewers then NHRA you know things have to change. I don’t think this is what Wally Parks had in mind when he said make racing affordable to keep racing off the streets.

Okay, now I am really going to shake things up. A major CEO just announced that they are sponsoring the IHRA but they want all classes to be pro classes. From Stock to Nitro. Everybody is equal and everybody is Pro. Racers would have to pay $200.00 per event to enter a race, fans would pay $25.00 to enter the race or weekend passes for $30.00. MAVTV will be airing all events. You think NHRA would be in trouble then? The point of this is (for now) NHRA the only sand box in town for the Nitro teams. For me, I hope IHRA brings it AND brings back Pro Mod . That is where Pro mod started and this is where it belongs.

Is our sport in trouble, no not necessarily. Is NHRA in trouble Absolutely YES. When you try and control too much and lose sight of the big picture it is time to cut the fat and make changes. IHRA, PDRA and other series are doing very well and it wont be too long before NHRA puts their nose into the PDRA. At the end of the day it isn’t a perfect world, you have to roll with the punches, but you can only get up some many times before you have to retire from the ring and close the lights for good.

Somehow I will be in trouble. But Hey that why they call me BamBam. We do have the best show in the world, the best fans in the world and the best racers in the world. What NHRA does or doesn’t do really doesn’t matter in the big picture. As fans, racers, team owners we need to fight for what we believe in.

Athlete’s Voices: Dina Parise Episode 11, You’ve Come a Long Way Ladies!

 

Athlete’s Voices is posted monthly on Double G Sports! Check them all here!

http://doublegsports.com/category/other/athletes-voices/dina-parise/

If you have been paying attention to earlier blogs, you have been reading the term ‘Door Slammer’. A Pro Mod is referred to as a Door Slammer because it is a powerful racecar with doors and the driver sits in the driver’s seat as in a traditional street car. They are replicas of traditional production bodies, for example my 3,000HP Dina Parise Racing Cadillac CTSV (to debut soon). I want you all to understand our sport of Pro Mod Drag Racing and get to enjoy it the way it is meant to be enjoyed! Relatable enough to your everyday car yet powerful enough to lift you (the spectator) out of your seat!

The very early days of NASCAR (1949) had names such as Louise Smith and Ethel Mobley. In 1965, Shirley Muldowney was the first woman licensed by NHRA to drive a gasoline-burning Gas dragster, capable of speeds over 150 MPH in the Quarter mile. In 1977 Janet Guthrie was the first woman to earn a starting spot in the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500(where she was Top Rookie). So, you see what I am getting at. Ladies have been making their mark in the Motorsports industry for decades.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to have a conversation with Carolyn Melendy. She is considered the ‘first lady’ of Pro Mod. (Door Slammers, if you will). Her entrance into the Pro Mod world was in the 90’s. At the time, yes it was Male dominated. She stated that no one wanted to line up next to her to race. No one. The issue to them was, they felt she did not have the ‘skill’ to drive a Pro Mod. Finally, Bill Kuhlmann (a pioneer in the Pro Mod movement) decided to line up next to her thinking he would have her by many car lengths. The conclusion was he was sadly mistaken. Although Carolyn did not win the race, she was right with him all the way! It was there that she began to legitimize herself in the Pro Mod world and opened the door for women like me. I’m thankful for that. And on a side note, I would like to mention Annette Summer and Carol Long. Two ladies in Pro Mod that I also feel may not get the recognition they deserve. Or even Bunny Burkett (IHRA Funny Car Driver and World Champion) for that matter. Ladies much like me that work hard at their ‘craft’ without the accolades. True racers. And at the heart of it, that is what we are; racers, drivers competitors.

Being a ‘woman in motorsports’ is a bit of a phenomenon. I don’t mean that the way you think I do either. We ladies tend to stick together. We are uniquely supportive of each other, yet we are as competitive as they come. Our concentration levels are second to none. We celebrate the fact that we are women because that is what women do. Here is where the phenomenon ends (in my eyes anyway). When it comes to racing, the actual sport and art of racing we are drivers. That’s it. The cars, the track, the timers and the finish line do not know we are women nor that the competitors may be men. We are all drivers. Amazingly, every once in a blue moon I will run into the quintessential Neanderthal with scabs on his knuckles from apparently not having completed the evolutionary process. He is the guy that thinks women should be seen (preferably scantily clad) and not heard. He is also the guy that thinks we as women should be in the kitchen making a sandwich rather than doing what we do. As I said the occurrence although rare does happen. I personally love dealing with ‘this’ type and I must admit, being from New York tends to give me the ‘upper hand’ as far as comebacks! In this day and age, unless you are living under a rock, it’s time to realize; a driver is a driver and again, the car has no idea if we are male or female.

Now, let’s get back to the phenomenon theory and celebrating the fact that we are women. I am very proud of the fact that in my life I had the honor to skate for one of the most prestigious ice shows to tour North America for over 50 years ; The Ice Capades. Being a ‘Showgirl’ is an image that has been associated with me for as long as I can remember. My Dina Parise Racing fans, friends and fellow racers have been making the association for many years as well. Therefore, I would like to present to you the NEW Dina Parise Racing logo, where style and beauty meets competitiveness and power! I hope it lets all the ladies out there know, they can be whatever they want to be! Don’t dream it, be it! I have a saying, “Remember, you only get one ticket in this life, I’m using mine until it expires!”

In my next blog, I will be writing about the long awaited debut of the Cadillac CTSV Pro Mod as well as our outing to the Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival! There we will meet up with (one of) our Partners Chef Eddie G (and Chef Jr) of Coast 2 Coast Cuisine! Anyone who knows me, knows I can’t say no to good food and wine! So, stay tuned for more fun stuff from DPR!

People always ask how our DPR team can get out there to do what we do. Our Marketing Partners are the key to DPR’s success! This team works hard to keep our Advertisers happy! Check out the Advertisers and go ahead and try their products and services! DPR uses them all! Thank you to NGK, LAT Racing Oils, CRC Industries, Bell Helmets, DJ Safety, Stainless Works, Speedwire Systems, USA Auto Supply, Matheis Race Cars Inc., Hoosier Racing Tire and Coast 2 Coast Cuisine TV for their support throughout the season and beyond! Visit here: http://dinapariseracing.com/marketing-partners for all their websites and details! Contact DPR to become a Marketing Partner as well! Let DPR work for you!

Get Social: Be sure to join me and my DPR team on all our Social Media! Our 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, Instagram and Twitter and don’t forget Bella the Wonder Pug too https://twitter.com/ProModBella !

Thank for reading!

See you at the races!

Dina Parise~DPR

I can’t take the heat, get me out of the car!

Woofin’ at ya my good people! It has been a dogs age since Mom has let me at the Lap Top! Good thing the Dina Parise Racing Cadillac CTSV Pro Mod is almost ready to debut….. she’s making me and Daddy crazy! I like my ‘dog’ space, and she’s in it wayyyy to much! They say dogs get under your feet? I don’t know, I think humans are just looking for a way to trip themselves.

Recently, my Mom and Dad took me on a very long trip. I don’t care, I love to travel! Then I got to stay in some really nice hotels! I love hotels! When I walk in the lobby, they treat me like the Super Star that I am! Lots of petting and chatting…. Well, they chat, I just enjoy the attention!

I did get to sit in mom’s new Cadillac CTSV. It’s nice and comfy! But, I’m not sure where Mom’s gonna sit! You know, sometimes I do need a break from my NHRA Jr.Dragster stroller! I like a bit more….horse power!

I know you may have read about me going to see Dr.Coren at West Hills Animal Hospital & 24hr Emergency Veterinary Center. Well, really, sometimes I like to make Mom take me there because they treat me so nice! I have lots of friends there. But this time I was not feeling so great. So, the Doc took a blood test (I do not like those…Woof!) and Mom waited by the phone for the results. Thing is, you can’t keep this old girl down! That’s just what the Doc said too! He told my Mom that I’m lookin’ good for 84 1/2 years old! Mom gives me treats twice a day. I let her think I don’t know there are meds inside them. She thinks she’s smarter than me, but really I rule the whole house! I have them wrapped around my furry little paw….just where I want them.

I am ready to hit the Drag Strip to see my peeps! It’s time! I have been tweeting and working my paws to the bone! Being the DPR, PR Pug is a hard job …. Being this cute is tough. But, hey someone’s gotta do it right?

Let me be real Woofin’ serious for a moment. I know you humans love spending time with us fur babies (and real kids too!). We are too cute to resist. But baby, it’s HOT outside! Would you wear a winter coat in this weather (like I do)? Would you wear a winter coat and sit in a car with no air-conditioning or stay out in the yard for hours on end ? No,  I didn’t think so. So, if the thought of that makes you break out into a sweat and hyperventilate, think what it does to us furry ones! The car is NO PLACE for us to be fur kids locked into especially on a hot summer day. We know you think you are doing the right thing by taking us along, but really we would rather be in the air-conditioned house. We wanna play with our toys and drink water when we feel like it. And the best part….. is when we greet you at the door when you come home! Don’t you love that ? It’s what we do best ( well, I snore really good… but that’s another story!). So say NO to leaving fur babies in the car! This message is brought to you by Bella the DPR, PR Pug! Feel free to pass this message along! My work is done here, now I will hit the pool !

Don’t forget you can find me on Twitter ! https://twitter.com/ProModBella

Can’t wait to see you all soon! Woof at ya later!

Bella Booda

The DPR PR Pug