Being part of a drag racing family, Grace Porter was all set to start racing Junior Dragsters when she was 6.
“I grew up going to the races with my dad every weekend. He races Stock Eliminator in the USA. My parents had my first Junior Dragster built when they first came out in 1992. I was 6. Shortly after we got the car, NHRA made the ruling that you had to be 8 to race!”
Grace’s admiration and respect for the sport came about from having parents who race, as well as them running a drag strip in the early 80’s. “Both my parents raced NHRA Stock and Super Stock Eliminator.”
We asked Grace “Why Pro Stock”. Her response…..”I love that Pro Stock is the ultimate driver’s category as well as the top class showing innovation. As a child I saw Warren Johnson run the first 200mph pass at Dinwiddie and was determined that I would sit in one of those seats one day.”
Racing is still very much a family affair for this South Carolina born racer. “I’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunities to race for a few professional teams. However, whether it is racing back home in the USA with my dad and husband, or racing here with my husband and father-in-law, I’ve had more fun and happiness racing as family.”
“Having my father-in-law Paul be the voice backing me up on the radio, and husband Scott line me up on the starting line is very special and reassuring as I’m strapped into our almost 200mph race car. The best part of all about racing is sharing this sport with my step-children when we take them to our local track to race their Jr Dragster.”
Grace currently races the Porters Racing Mustang which was built by Jerry Haas. Jerry was also the guy who introduced Grace to her husband Scott Porter.
Scott, a well known Australian Pro Stock racer, tunes the John Barbagallo-built engine at the track, so this couple are never far apart from each other.
“I love spending time with Scott and my step-children.”
With the Nitro Champs less than two weeks away, we asked Grace to share with us what the Porters Racing “game plan” is for their time on the track at Sydney Dragway on May 7.
“We have a new power plant with more HP than we previously had, so our plan is to make changes with the car in testing, to account for this new HP.”
With Grace’s PB’s being 6.558 @ 210mph in NHRA Pro Stock, and 7.013 @ 195mph in Australia, she is determined to get their car into the sixes.
With much talk centered around the preparation and tip top condition of the Sydney Dragway track for the upcoming Pro Class event, there is no doubt some amazing passes will be run by the Pro Stock racers on the day. We asked Grace to share a couple of things about Pro Stock that might surprise their fans. “The fastest 60 foot time doesn’t always equate to the fastest car or the car with more HP. And, Australian Pro Stock cars change to 2nd gear a lot quicker than NHRA Pro stock cars!”
After learning all about Grace’s racing history and their current car, we wanted to learn a little about her pre-race preparation.
“I drink a crazy amount of water and no caffeine on race day. Also, I check the air bottle, and that the pin is out of fire bottle 500 times prior to start up.”
When it comes to food at the track, we were green with envy when she shared with us what is on the Porters Racing menu. “Our in-house chef/golf cart driver/engine assistant ‘Curly’ always has the best menu prepared for our team. It is not unusual to see sweet and sour chicken in the slow cooker or fresh caught Nth QLD coral trout on the BBQ, always accompanied by homemade mango chutney!” (We know where we’ll be dining on May 7.)
If you wish to connect with Grace and her husband Scott, and want to support them in their endeavors to run their first 6 second pass in Australia, put the Nitro Champs in to your calendar for May 7.
You can also learn more about the team on their facebook page.
400 Thunder Nitro Champs
May 7 & 8
Image credits – Reaction Time Media and Porters Racing Facebook page