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Words and photos by "Berserko" Bob Doerrer

An estimated 5,000 people showed up in the town of Cherryville, North Carolina on May 11 for Doug Herbert's RaceDay 2002, in effect doubling the population of the small town.

For the past 10 years Herbert has been opening up his race shop/performance parts warehouse on the Saturday of Mother's Day weekend, a traditional off week in all forms of racing. RaceDay features a giant car show featuring all forms of motorsports. Doug discounts everything in his multi-million dollar inventory, gives out free hot dogs and sodas to all, and holds a free door prize drawing for thousands of dollars in prizes.

The hit of the event is when Doug fires up his Top Fuel dragster in the parking lot. This year Robert D. Raiford from the nationally syndicated "John Boy & Billy Big Show" had the opportunity to sit in the driver's seat when Doug cackled it up. Raiford, by the way, is 75 years old, rode up on a 2002 Harley Police Special, and became an instant "nitromaniac."

Then there was the "Big Bang" where they put a brick on the gas pedal of a full size car and run it wide open until it blows up. This year an Oldsmobile Cutlass was the sacrificial lamb.

One surprise was Shirl Greer, NHRA's first Funny Car World Champion who showed up with his original "Chained Lightning" Funny Car and his un-real 1947 General Motors Truck which he hauls it around in. Look for Shirl to have this car on the track soon.

Mark your calendar's now for next year's event.


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