Local motorcycle drag racer hopes to race into the world finals

PHOTO: Samantha Zarek

BRISTOL, Tenn. - At one time, Elisabeth Armstrong sat in the stands at Thunder Valley, watching the NHRA races with her dad on father's day. Now, she's the one that people come to watch on the drag strip. It all started when she got her first bike, about 7 years ago.

"I wasn't old enough to race, you can't start until you're 15, so my dad raced it for a season, and then I was like, alright, scoot on over, it's my turn," Elisabeth says.

She says there's more to drag racing than going down the strip in a straight line.

"There's a science, there's a math behind it, and your dial, and how you're going to dial...the weather, there's so many conditions that go into it, and with bracket racing, it's all in consistency, you want the dead same thing every race," she says.

For Elisabeth, racing is more than just a sport or a fun pastime.

"Oh it's my whole means a lot to me, and I'm able to bring my family to the racetrack with me," she says.

Elisabeth's dad, Tim, is also a racer...sometimes even racing against his daughter. He's proud to see her passion come to life on the racetrack.

"First time she went down the racetrack to the last time she'll go down the racetrack, my heart drops every time she goes, but it's something she loves to do...she's good at it, I wouldn't take it away from her for nothing in the world, I'm very proud of her...very proud of her," Tim says.

This week Elisabeth is racing in the NHRA division two finals at Rockingham in North Carolina. depending on how she does there, she could be racing for the world title in California coming up in November.

"There's tough competition out there, it's the best from division two, and they come, and they come ready to race, so it's tough to make it. I'm hoping that this year it will be even better and exciting, just knowing the track a little bit better and just that potential and that goal to be able to go to California and race in the world finals, that's the total package," Elisabeth says.