Racers visit Texas children’s hospital
On Monday, Sept. 25, the day after the AAA Texas NHRA Nationals in Ennis, TX, Tommy Phillips and Luke Bogacki joined a group of racers assembled by event coordinator Jason Kizlinski for the Racers for Kids Car Show at Children’s Medical Center in Plano, TX There, the racers displayed their cars on the circle drive of the hospital, in front of the main lobby, and welcomed patients and their parents to get up close and personal with the machines.
Children’s Medical Center is the fifth largest pediatric hospital in the nation. Kizlinski, an area Super Street competitor, established the car show three years ago after hearing a radio commercial for the hospital that challenged him to make a small difference in the lives of affected children.
“We put together this program for the first time two years ago,” said Kizlinski. “I got about a dozen other racers together and coordinated the event with the folks here at Children’s Medical Center. The response was overwhelming. That first year I had a father approach me and thank me for the car show. I politely deferred the thanks, telling him to praise the hospital for allowing us to bring the cars. The parent then said, ‘No, I want to thank you. My son hasn’t smiled in over a year, until today.’
“Once I heard that, I knew we were onto something,” said Kizlinski.
Also at the event were NHRA Nitro Funny Car Driver Alexis DeJoria, Top Alcohol Dragster competitor Forrest Fair, sportsman racer Jimmy Lewis, Super Street driver Donna Watson, Jr. Dragster team Mannie and Willie Cantrell, Brent Raines, and more. (photos courtesy Luke Bogacki) [10/5/2012]
California sticker shock at the pumps
Californians woke up to a shock Friday, Oct. 5, as gasoline prices jumped overnight by as much as 30 cents a gallon in some areas, ending a week of soaring costs that saw some gas stations close and others charging record prices at the pump.
The average price of regular gas across the Golden State rose to nearly $4.49 a gallon according to the AAA. Prices have jumped 40 cents in a week as refinery problems have created shortages and at some SoCal stations the price is as high as $5.70 per gallon today.
In addition to California’s restrictive regulations, a large fire at a Richmond, Calif., Chevron refinery has it operating at reduced capacity, a power failure has affected an Exxon Mobil refinery in Torrance and a Chevron pipeline that moves crude oil to Northern California also was shut down for repairs.
If you think the weather has added to falling attendance at the NHRA Big Show this year, the rising price of gasoline will certainly hurt attendance and car counts at the Heritage Sportsman Finals event this weekend at Auto Club Famoso Raceway and the upcoming California Hot Rod Reunion on Oct. 19-21. (Darr Hawthorne photo) [10/5/2012]