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For those of you not “riding home” the AHDRA Northwest National’s kick-off on August 23rd at the Woodburn Dragstrip.  This is exactly what riders of any championship series are anxiously waiting for…turning up the volume in the valley!

AHDRA is celebrating its 31st year of drag racing.  With 16 different classes ranging from 224-mph Top Fuel bikes to the highly competitive ET class.  AHDRA began as a club racing organization in the late seventies and continued over the years under many different names. All Harley Drag Racing Association (AHDRA) became the official licensed name for the sanction in 1991.

For the second consecutive year Salem Harley-Davidson is sponsoring the event.  The Woodburn dragstrip is located at I-5 to exit 271, then 1.6 miles west on SR219

Poster courtesy of AHDRA web site.

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I’m not a big motorcycle race fan.  Sure I’ve sat on and walked around the NHRA Screamin’ Eagle Destroyer.  Introduced in 2006 it was Harley’s VRSCA V-Rod that the CVO Division launched.  Complete with ‘drag racer’ colors and even included the wheelie bar, solid rear struts and the mother of all drag distinguishing accessories…a big square slick rear tire. 

The marketing wizards claimed it was the drag bike for the “average guy” and hoped to sell many of those $31K turn-key, non-street legal, sub-10 second hot rods!   Well as enticing as that sounds I never plopped down the money or do the burnout box gig.  Being that you see many of these “Destroyers” for sale in cycle trader I suspect many of us elected to pass too.

However, recently I learned about Peggy Llewellyn.  The 35 year old won her first NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle race last September.  She (and the key word there is SHE) is the first African-American women to win an NHRA event.  The 2007 results are in and she took 4th place in the final POWERade Series standings.  Excellent results by any measure from that Buell V-Twin!

Her previous life as a Real Estate Broker is a far cry from her day job as a Pro Stock racer. She started 2007 with just 6 pro starts in 2001 to her name and no sponsorship.  She sold her “bracket bike” to pay bills and was studying for her real estate license before deciding in 2004 to develop her racing skills under George Bryce, a six time champion team owner.

The Llewellyn team is looking for ’08 sponsors so, if you’re feeling the need to become a partner and focus on the drag racing demographic here is a link to get involved.

Picture: courtesy of Peggy’s web site.  Drag Racing picture: courtesy of Competition Plus.

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