than the driving aspect, are you happy with
making the switch?
Totally. Totally happy. I only wish that I had
done it sooner, a lot sooner. When I built the
last Camaro, the one everyone saw earlier this
year, all that kept me from building a Pro Mod
was I didn't have another $5,000 at the time.
That was all it was. I just had no way of coming
up with it for the body, so I went with the
Pro Street deal again.
When you race like me, people
don't realize we just don't get a car that you
put a motor in and go. We've never had a new
car like that until this '57, which basically
was a bolt-in deal. But even with it we had
to reconfigure the chassis because it was not
a proven car. We've had to do everything ourselves;
we've done it the hard way.
it wasn't a proven performer, why did you buy
this particular car? Did you just get a good
deal on it?
Yeah, cheap. It was actually one of the most
expensive Pro Mods ever built, but Mike Castellana
and his guys couldn't get it to work. Well,
they did sometimes, but it was always hit or
miss, so he just wanted to sell it fast.
The car just had a few little
things wrong with it and I feel like we've found
those things and fixed them. I was told by Ron
Santos once that if a car has integrity, you
can make it go down the track. This car has
The chassis was originally built by Tim McAmis,
but Tommy Mauney and Shannon Jenkins have both
worked on it. And I did some things that I didn't
tell them about because they didn't agree with
it, but I had a theory and it worked.
to share any of those theories?
Nope. I haven't even told Shannon some of them.
will we see you racing the '57 in 2003?
Well, I've got a lot going right now. I've got
a '68 Camaro, a Mauney car, and a Vanishing
Point car that's a brand-new '63 Corvette, all
back at the shop right now waiting for us. The
Mauney Camaro, he did the frame and mounted
the body and did the pedals, and now I'm taking
it to K&B Racecars in Kentucky and he's going
to finish it for me.
sounds like things are up in the air over what
you'll be doing next year. Are you even sure
you'll be running IHRA Pro Mod next year?
Yeah, I love IHRA.
can you afford to run a full Pro Mod season?
Well, I hired Wendy Tysinger from Tysinger Promotions
in August to help with a sponsor search. We'll
see what happens.
you feel like you have something to prove by
going to Pro Mod?
Well, right now the question has always been
about that car I bought. The question was, had
I lost my mind, because that car had not been
down the track but a handful of times. And that's
the thing; I want to prove that I know what
And I love driving that car. Everything
fits me perfect. It's like it was made for me.
The car doesn't know I'm a female, just like
it doesn't know it's a Chevrolet.
I know you saw Pat Musi's comments earlier on
Drag Racing Online about you not being a real
racer. What was your reaction to that?
I felt I was not deserving. But nothing surprises
me from that bunch over there, and they know
who they are.
did it hurt your feelings?
I wouldn't say that. There's two people there
who can't stand me and they don't think women
have any place in racing. But you know, I don't
see it that way, and neither does Laurie Cannister,
or Rhonda Hartman, or Bunny Burkett, or Shirley
Muldowney. We're not out here just to mess with
men's heads. We're out here because this is
what we love to do and there's no rule stating
that women can't race. All I can say is they
better get over it because I'm going to be around
for a long while.
It's an open field over here,
so if they want to come on over and race me,
come on over. All these people have said they're
going to leave Pro Street and go to Pro Mod,
but where are they? I'm the only one here.
comparison, how have the IHRA racers reacted
to your presence?
They've been real good to me. I've known lots
of them for years and been friends with them,
too. There's been no bad; it's all good. So
far, there's no Pats or Tonys here.
I just want to race.
I want to come here and be everybody's friend
and leave as their friend. I don't want to play
any games, no psych jobs, no badmouthing. I
just want to race, do the best I can, and go
home with the same amount of friends as I came
with. I don't want any trouble; I just want
to have fun, because if it's not fun, I'm not
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