Drag Racing Isn't Just for Boys

SPARKS, NV - As Hot August Nights wraps up, one of the most popular events puts the pedal to the metal as your favorite classics go head-to-head at the Nugget's Drag Races & Burnouts. In a sport that's dominated by men, a local female drag racer is defying the odds.

Cars racing down a 16th of a mile stretch of road at speeds up to 135 miles per hour would satisfy almost anyone's need for speed. For the past week, professional and amateur race car drivers have lined up to get their 10 seconds of thrill.

Their mentality is " It's never fast enough." Summer Black has been racing for eight years. It's in her blood. She comes from a family of thrill seekers and this year, she's one of the only female drag racers. However, male or female, the danger is all the same.

"A lot goes through your head in 10 seconds," she said. "Should I let out? Should I break? How fast am I going? You only have a couple of seconds to make a decision. whether you should back out or keep going."

Her father, Jerry Coleman, is one of her biggest supporters, but also knows there's a lot at risk.

"Every time she straps herself in, it's about heart attack time for me," he said. "She knows what can happen. We've discussed it and she's OK with it."

"If I get out of the groove, I've almost hit the wall," Black said. "It can be scary. You just have to be on your toes and know how to react in those type of situations."

She's ready to show she's not afraid of a little danger. She may be a girl, but when she puts on a helmet, she's a professional.

"At the end of the day, I'm still a race car driver, whether I'm a girl or not."


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