Keystone Raceway Park was our destination this past weekend and our final event that takes us through the dreadful long state of Pennsylvania. Who are we kidding, we make the best out of the 5,7, 10+ hour long car rides together. It’s fun to stop and explore or even get lost, they are all just part of making the memories!
Keystone was bustling with moms, dads, kids, aunt, uncles and everyone else, this track has always stood out in my mind as a track with the best family attendance. Kids stopped by all day for photos, autographs and survivors – even bringing me Jr. Dragster parts to sign! One family came by with their daughters and a wing off of Isla’s Jr. Dragster – I am not sure who was more excited Isla or me!
No matter where we are, I always make an effort to get out of the pit at least once to circle the grounds and check out what’s going on. On this walk dad and I were on a mission. The event sign when you pulled up had all of us on it and I know it would look great in my museum one day, so we set out to find it. However, we did not have much luck, the gate we came in was locked so we made sure every official we crossed paths with was told we wanted the sign. Coming back, I did end up getting to spend time with Brian Borowski of the Scott Rods AA/Gasers group. The Green Gremlin was parked waiting for me to hop, via invitation from the crew of course! These guys are awesome and put on a great show complete with back up girls – AKA BUGS!
I made two runs Saturday Night both shutting off around the 1,000′ mark moving at 265+ MPH. I have to admit I even impressed myself as I was coming down the drag strip on my first pass, I glanced up at the score boards and it read .000! (That’s a perfect Reaction Time) My immediate reaction was Tom Dauber would be proud. Tom was a huge influence in my bracket racing days and always stressed the importance of cutting a good light.
It turned bittersweet at the end of the night when I realized this could very well be the last race with Danny O’Day, the man in the most famous Wheel Stander. Danny is set to retire at the end of this season, which made this our last event together for 2017. Just before we part ways though, I got his autograph. I was able to collect Danny’s, Bob Motz and my teammates signatures when Greg, the Track Manager brought over the sign we were after all day! The 5 of us may drive some of the craziest, most adrenaline influenced machines on the planet and when you think what could excite us more than going 300 MPH or down a track on two wheels, out comes Greg with the event sign for everyone, we all got our own! It was a terrific end to the night! All 5 drivers were rotating signs and leaving their autograph for each other. Similar to signing your friend’s yearbook at the end of the school year – reflecting and appreciating the memories made.