In June 2009 her TAFC crashed at Englishtown. (Todd Dziadosz photo)

: With escalating costs, like travel, fuel, parts, and everything that is a part of racing in 2011, is that having on your racing at all?

AD: Yeah, fuel is huge, it is expensive. We almost didn’t go to the Gators because of how much the fuel prices have jumped, but I said that we’ve got to run Gainesville. We’ve always done really well there. We used to live there, we just moved back to California and there was no other race for us to make up, because basically the other ones would have been even further for us to attend. Costs have definitely taken a toll on everybody; when you have a tow vehicle that you drive to all the races and a big truck and trailer like this, it’s tons of fuel. But overall we’ve cut down and are just racing National events this year. What I am trying to do is win a National event this year. I have won a divisional, been to a couple of finals at a National and some semis, but I really want to focus on winning a National event. So we have pretty much cut out racing at all Divisionals, except last weekend here at Vegas, but that was really a test session for the National for us.

: Do you feel that the NHRA media gives too much attention to the Force family, to the Force women, and not enough to you, Erica Enders, Melanie Troxell, and some of the other women racers out there?

AD: I think it is just natural because of who he is and what he has accomplished; of course anything associated with Force is going to gain that kind of recognition. That is understandable. I don’t have any animosity towards them. I think it is great; they bring a lot to the sport. Me personally, I want to be known for my ability to drive the racecar and I want to do well, that’s how I want to be remembered. But coming from a father who is also very prominent, I know how that works. I need to work extra hard, just to get away from that to prove and define myself out there. I don’t want to be known as his daughter, I want to be known for Alexis DeJoria, she’s a damn good driver and her car hauls ass. (laughing) That’s what I want to be known for.

: Is there a point where you can see yourself stepping back, away from the driver’s seat and nurturing another woman into drag racing?

AD: I would love to. I want to own my own operation and have other female drivers; there are a few I would love to put in a car right now if I had the means to. There’s not enough but the ones who are out there are really good, and you really have to work a lot harder to prove yourself, because we are going to have that following us wherever we go. But it doesn’t bother me; I’m out here racing with these guys and at the end of the day, we are all trying to win!

: Do you see women like Shirley Muldowney as a role model?

AD: Of course, she paved the way for all of us. If you don’t have respect for that woman, you are crazy. I mean really. As a female, she made it happen for all of us. I have never met her, I would love to. She’s tough - she had to be - and back in those days she really had to work it to get in there and never back down. I admire that and that is the same kind of mentality that I have: don’t ever give up, and follow what you believe in. 

: Do you have that same kind of toughness?

AD: Yes I do, but it’s a little bit easier. I don’t blow up at every little thing; I’ll just tuck it away in the back of my mind and remember it for next time. I learn from my mistakes or experiences, but (laughing) I am more like the stealth fighter: flying below the radar, but keeping tabs on everything.