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Start your engines – Drag races are here!

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Madison Steff, LV Life Editor

Madison Steff, LV Life Editor

Well it’s November again and for those of you like me, you know exactly what that means: the drags are back in Pomona.

This weekend the Auto Club Raceway at Pomona will host the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals and I will be front and center pressed against the fence with a “water” in my hand.

Ever since I was a little girl I have attended the drags at Pomona and they have become my absolute favorite time of year followed closely by Professional Bull Riding events, the San Dimas Rodeo, the Fair and, of course, river season.

My parents started taking me to the drags when I was about 5 years old and I remember telling my mom that the cars “make my insides feel funny,” but that funny feeling in my gut has turned into my absolute favorite feeling in the world combined with the sound of the engines and the smell of nitromethane and methanol.

Sounds a little funny coming from a blonde-haired, blue-eyed girl like myself, but it couldn’t be more true.

I love everything about the drags from the cars, to the fans to the drivers. I’ll even admit that I have had a few posters on my walls of my favorite racers including Kenny and Brandon Bernstein, J.R. Todd, Tommy Johnson Jr., Tony Schumacher and lets not forget the legendary John Force.

Told you I was a huge fan.

Although the whole day at the drags is an unforgettable experience nothing can beat when the Top Fuel Dragsters come out to race. That’s when the big boys come out to play and the entire city of Pomona shakes and makes you guys in the Oaks think the dorms are going to collapse at any second.

I know you guys on campus hate it but just grin and bear it because for people like me, it is something we look forward to all year long.

These dragsters cover a quarter-mile in about 4.5 seconds and reach speeds more than 325 MPH. Now if that’s not something to appreciate, I don’t know what is.

The great thing about living so close to Pomona is that I get to attend both the beginning and end of the season. That’s right, the season begins and ends right here in Pomona, aren’t I lucky? For those of you who don’t know, the Pomona Raceway is actually a historic racetrack where the first official NHRA race was held in 1953. Pretty rad.

When I am not in the stands or up against the fence this weekend, you’ll be sure to find me wandering the pits mingling with the mechanics, talking to a few drivers and watching the action take place.

If my eyes are a little red and it looks like I’ve been crying, do not worry, that just means I have been enjoying an up close and personal look at these dragsters and although my eyes will be burning, I’ll enjoy every second of it.

When the races aren’t at Pomona, I tend to bore my friends and make them watch almost every race with me on TV. I have not had the opportunity to travel to the races outside of Pomona, but it is something that I have always wanted to do and with my college career coming close to an end, I might just have to plan a trip to Phoenix or Las Vegas next season.

Thank you Wally Parks, you did a great job. May you rest in peace.

Madison Steff, a senior communications major, is LV Life editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at

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