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Petrie All Set for Portland

Petrie first entered drag racing by accident after her husband Tim bought the Topolino with the intention of driving himself. Unfortunately the cockpit was a tight fit for Tim and so Petrie was thrust into the spotlight without ever even attending a drag racing event because she thought they were "boring".

"How wrong was I?" she said.

The hot rod-styled car was originally built in New Zealand in the early 1970s and raced across the ditch until 2000. Eventually a couple from Australia purchased it and it raced at Alice Springs for 18 months.

"We purchased it in August 2005 and I was licensed in December 2005," Petrie said.

"We run in the Modified category. My personal best times are 8.34 seconds at 254kmh over a quarter mile (402m) and 5.25 at 207kmh over the eighth mile (201m)."

Petrie is no stranger to South Coast Raceway after competing in this event last January and enjoying the experience with her team.

"As far as tracks go it is one of the best I have raced on and the track staff and crew are second to none," Petrie said.

"Nothing was a problem and they couldn't do enough for you. We were made to feel very welcome."

Petrie says competitors have to be on their game as the eighth mile is unforgiving with no room to make up for a bad reaction time to the starting lights.

"If it all comes together it would be nice to come away with a win but as long as we have fun I don't mind either way," she said.

The action begins Saturday 4 Januaryand fans can join the fun when gates open from 9am both Saturday and Sunday.

Qualifying begins from 11am Saturday with eliminations from 10am on Sunday, featuring eleven categories from Junior Dragsters to Competition.

12182013---Jenny-Petrie web

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