PHOENIX — CSK Auto Inc. and the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) have joined forces to educate America’s youth of the dangers of street racing and the benefits of racing at licensed race tracks under controlled conditions.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for people aged 16 to 20. In Florida, injuries related to street racing increased 122 percent from 1999 to 2001. In San Diego, the number of street racing cases prosecuted increased 97 percent in that same time period. The number of fatal crashes as a result of street racing increased 87 percent in 2001 alone.
“Today’s young drivers, especially those with sport compacts, are constantly being tempted to race their cars on the street,” said Jim Schoenberger, vice president of marketing for CSK Auto. “The risks for accidents, injuries and death are even greater now than they were 50 years ago, when the same environment prompted the creation of the NHRA, to get racing off the street and onto the track. CSK understands the allure of racing and speed, and as an active sponsor in all kinds of racing, we feel it important to help the NHRA educate young drivers about the dangers of street racing, and all the positives of racing at an NHRA track.”
CSK Funny Car drivers Del Worsham and Phil Burkart, in conjunction with local police departments, are scheduling visits to high schools throughout the country to share their professional racing experience and offer firsthand knowledge of why drivers should “Race on the Track, Never on the Street.”
“Too many people don’t understand the power of an automobile,” said Worsham. “But if something breaks, or something goes wrong, the last place you want to be is on the street. The NHRA has programs at tracks all over America. They check out your car, show you how to race, and give you a time slip so you can see how your car’s running. You won’t have to worry about hurting yourself or some innocent bystander, and you won’t have to worry about getting arrested.”
“Street racing is stupid,” added Burkart. “Street racing kills people and ruins lives. The only place to race is at the track, where everything is built for racing.”
The NHRA has more than 140 member tracks in North America where young drivers can race in a controlled environment. The minimum requirements for racing are usually a valid driver’s license, registration and insurance; and seat belts, DOT-approved street legal tires and a muffler.
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