If you view the news, you will notice that the term ‘Drag Racing’ gets thrown around frequently and for the wrong reasons. The use of the media’s incorrect terminology has a tendency to reflect negatively on the sport of Drag Racing as a whole. For those who have never experienced the amazing , family friendly sport of Drag Racing (where have you been?)… here is a quick lesson!
Drag Racing (in short) is a competition in which ‘prepared’ vehicles compete in a ‘controlled’ environment (a Drag Strip). There are governing rules for participants and that includes safety.
Street Racing is just that. Street Racing. It is in no way shape or form , Drag Racing and, yes it is illegal and it’s just plain stupid.
Now I ask you, if they were going around a curve, why do they not call it NASCAR racing? Just a thought.
For the many who participate in the sport of Drag Racing whether it be on a professional lever or as a hobby, it is the Drag Racing community that is fighting the battle to uphold a reputation being tarnished by those who seem to have no knowledge of what the sport actually consists of. The media in it’s haste seems to latch onto the term Drag Racing as if it is a common denominator. The common denominator is education , or lack of it.
As a Drag Racer I feel the need to want to educate the media (as well as the general public) on the difference between Drag Racing and Street Racing. I have made 100’s calls to local newspapers and TV stations requesting the correction. Their answer? We will make a note of it. Really a note? And the beat goes on.
I have had conversations with Top Fuel Driver Doug Herbert about this very subject. He and I have the same complaint when it comes to getting the media to understand the distinction between Drag Racing and Street Racing. Doug’s amazing B.R.A.K.E.S. Program ( http://www.putonthebrakes.com/ ) is one that should be in every community (in my opinion).
I reiterate, education on ALL sides is key! For many reasons. Of course to start; We need to differentiate between Street Racing and Drag Racing for the (what we as Racers know to be) obvious reasons. Let me entertain you!
Street Racing: ILLEGAL. Done on our public Roads. Very Dangerous. Very Stupid. *That sums it up*
Drag Racing: LEGAL. Performed in a controlled environment. With governing rules, regulations and safety features. A family sport! Entertaining and a great day out for all. Every ticket is a ‘pit pass’! No gender requirements. No age limits.
As a Team owner and Driver I admit, I do find it a responsibility to our fans and even to the public to make everyone understand the importance of safe driving. But the negative connotation of Drag Racing to Street Racing has created an ‘Oxymoron’ of sorts. Here’s why.
Due to the now created misconception, many think that Drag Racers are cowboys on the road. Quite the contrary. I know, we as Drag Racers are safer drivers because we are more aware, more cognizant of what can happen. It’s our job. So, let us put it to good use, rather than sensationalizing our sport because it’s there for the taking.
This DPR team works hard. We work hard at racing and we work hard when we are not. Just as many other teams do. So love it, or not…. I am standing up for all of us Drag Racers and saying…..
Street Racing is NOT Drag Racing…Get it Straight…
See you at the Drag Strip!