NASCAR Supports Minority Dreams

NASCAR has long been the realm of aggressive male drivers who just ‘fit’ in the auto racing industry. But what if you don’t ‘fit’, but you still love the sport of auto racing? What if you don’t have great sponsorship or famous parents? NASCAR has been supporting the dreams of minority drivers for some time now – and their efforts are paying off.

Long blonde hair surrounding a pretty face is usually accompanied by minimal clothing and a buxom body in the racing fraternity. But Kristin Bumbera is no average car-hood pin-up. No, she’s nothing like that. Her long blonde locks hang over the back of a well-sponsored racing suit and, instead of adorning the hoods of cars, she gets behind the steering wheel and grinds up the tarmac with the best of them. The 21-year-old Late Model driver from Sealy, Texas, has already claimed two victories and 11 top-five finishes during the course of 2008 when she took part in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. Now she is hoping to pursue her dreams and take her career even further by joining 24 other hopefuls this weekend in NASCAR’s sixth Drive for Diversity class. All 25 drivers will be individually tested and evaluated at the South Boston Speedway in preparation for the class. Only 14 spots are available in the Drive for Diversity class, each of which will earn a fully funded ride for 2009.

Thus far the candidates for the class include 16 women and nine men. Ages range from 17-29 and all of them are excited at the prospect of winning the grand prize. The program will place ten of the winners in the Whelen Series, while four others will be driving in the Camping World Series. This is the next step in the career of all these drivers and is one they possibly wouldn’t be able to take without the assistance of NASCAR. Unlike a number of her competitors, Bumbera will be trying for a second year in the program after a very successful first year. She looks forward to the day when a female driver makes a real mark in NASCAR instead of just becoming another ‘female pioneer’. She faces stiff competition from a number of other really good young drivers who are equally eager to make their mark on the NASCAR world. No doubt the final results of the class will see some great new blood injected into the industry.

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