Up to Speed with the Queen…
The past few weeks have kept me moving at 300MPH both on and off the track.
It started with phone call from a longtime friend of mine Cassie who is currently teaching at Dolan Middle School – a school both her and I attended together as a 7th grade student back in 2005. She asked if I could come in the last week in May for their Scholar Day and I did, it was a humbling visit. This “job” has given me the incredible opportunity and unique platform to share with kids of all ages my story, my journey and the gratification that comes with following your passion. It was neat to stand in the very classroom I sat in as a 12-year-old with the same teacher (Ms. Bonardi, Language Arts) and to think it all started for me in these seats, at the same age.
From one homecoming onto the other, that Saturday (June 3rd) we drove down to my Home Track of Atco Dragway for their annual Night of Thrills event. It is always such a warm feeling going back to where you started, seeing so many familiar faces and getting the opportunity to introduce new friends to this crazy world us drag racers thrive in. For the second year in a row, Angelica Salem made the venture to sing the National Anthem during the opening ceremonies and soon after I blazed down the quarter mile in the Queen of Diamonds II defeating my opponent Ernie Bouge in the Beast from the East Jet Dragster twice at 298MPH and a 299MPH victory. A friend of mine, Rose McInerney (founder of WomanScape) was among the rookie’s of the night. She came out to see for herself what it’s like to feel a machine go 300MPH. I encourage you all to read her perspective on drag racing and the Queen of Diamonds.
Next stop was New Canaan High School to talk with a select group of seniors who will be graduating in the next few weeks and going out into the real world. The time spent with them was devoted to talking about following what gives you fire and how it’s okay to follow a path that may be a little different. Not only is it OK to branch out but it’s OK to fail. I didn’t get to where I am today because it was a walk in the park; I took the good with the bad and built on it. In the room was a specific senior, Holly – who is interested in journalism who wrote a fantastic recap of the time I spent with them. Special thank you to Heather Bianco, New Canaan Public Schools and News 12 CT for covering the day. Click below to read her article on the time I spent at New Canaan High School.