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Doc's Blog

Welcome to Diana 'The Doc' Thomas' official Blog ... A radio interviewer once referred to Diana as being a 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana has indeed filled the shoes (or fire boots) as truly being America's foremost 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana is known for being somewhat controversial at times... She writes the truth... Diana tells it like it is about drag racing and other topical issues-- You've seen Diana 'The Doc' Thomas on our DVDs, with Bret Kepner on ESPN, and in all the major media... Don't miss your opportunity to read her daily blog right here at DRAG RACING UNDERGROUND... Diana's blog gives you a daily dose of truth and reality with heart... Diana's unique and refreshing perspective is unlike anything else on the drag racing web... We strongly recommend that you bookmark this page now... Be sure you check in daily to experience & enjoy Diana's unique insight, worldly wisdom and perspective...
Unless you've been living under a rock, you know that Joplin, Missouri got walloped by the deadliest single tornado that locale has experienced in nearly six decades. Yesterday the death toll reached 116 and that number is expected to climb. Some meteorologists are claiming that there's a good chance that more tornadoes are going to pound the already ravaged town in the days to come. Those who want to help people affected by this disaster can make a donation to support the American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Visit www.redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS; people can also text the word "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to local American Red Cross chapters or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013. My heart (and some of my money) goes out to our brothers and sisters of Joplin, Mo.... Switching gears, I want to take this opportunity to remind y'all that the 42nd Annual NHRA SUPERNATIONALS are just 'round the corner. Thursday-Sunday June 2nd-5th. ETown will feature the absolute very best in Professional and Sportsman drag racing on its historically fast quartermile. If for some reason you still have not made plans to be there, you best get busy with that right now, 'cause you sure don't want to miss this one! For more information call Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, 732-446-7800, or visit their web site www.racewaypark.com

Despite the favorable forecast for yesterday's weather, we were plagued with cloudy skies and on-and-off-again light rain, this kept a lot of racers from coming out for the first installment of ETown's "BIG TIRE OUTLAW" series (although the spectator turnout was pretty decent considering the weather). Pace, DeAnglelis, Cerbone, Scioscia and Boer all showed up with their respective rides, saw some decent passes, but the weather kept the program from happening. Y'all come out on June 12th for the next "BIG TIRE OUTLAW" doorslammer date, because my "visionary" abilities are telling me that "Mother Nature" will provide us with better weather. It was great to see all my old friends at Raceway Park, and my new friends too (my apologies to everybody I might have missed)-- Yesterday was my first day back at the track this season, and even with the less than stellar weather, I enjoyed myself-- Lots of folks came up to me to say hello and were kind enough to compliment me on this new blog of mine, I really appreciate that!! John Gill spent some time with Andrew Hinkley in the announcer's booth. Andrew was ga-ga over our new black (and fully loaded) 2000 Lincoln Continental, the car we just recently bought-- Andrew reminded John of how the late Richard Napp (one of E'Town's 2nd generation owners and brother of Vince Napp) used to drive a 2000 Lincoln like ours, and how much Richard loved the car-- And I gotta tell ya-- We love the car too, it's incredible, it's unbelievable, the ride, the comfort, the horsepower (with its big 32 Valve V8)-- And wow, she sure looks beautiful in black, but hey, enough drooling over our new Lincoln... Andrew was also tellin' folks over the P.A. about how his collection of Drag Racing Underground DVDs keeps him satisfied during the drag racing off-season, helping him cope with Winter's symptoms of "cabin fever", we appreciate Andrew sayin' that. Here at Drag Racing Underground we sincerely try to give you all the best in hardcore drag racing entertainment, because you folks are our inspiration-- You're the proverbial "wind beneath our wings"-- I really mean that, I really do...

Well, evidently Evangelical blowhard Harold Camping was wrong. The earth didn't self destruct yesterday. We're all still here. I'm glad for that... Yesterday I went to my local LOEWS store in Woodbridge NJ, I had to buy some gardening stuff, while I was there, I happened to run into Ralph Musi (Pat Musi's brother). I asked Ralph how Pat was doing, and how he's holding up after his serious Pro Mod crash at NHRA's Southern Nationals. Ralph said that Pat is hangin' in there. Ralph also told me that when Pat hit the shutdown area wall he was going around 238 mph. Pat broke his back-- a broken back would certainly be a major setback for anybody. Ralph told me that it's gonna take awhile for Pat to mend. Fortunately the Musi family is the kind of family that sticks together, so Pat is definitely surrounded by family who cares about him and are going to do everything in their power to ease his recovery. I told Ralph to give Pat my best... Wrestler Randy "Macho Man" Savage passed away as a result of a heart attack. Just last week, the movie titled "THE WRESTLER" starring Mickey Rourke and Marisa Tomei was on TV. Mickey Rourke plays a character that sort of reminded me of Randy Savage, and ironically (or not ironically), he has a heart problem, probably due to all the steroids and weird drugs that some wrestlers take to "enhance" their appearance. If you haven't seen the movie, I strongly recommend you do-- It's pretty realistic and intense, and it was shot in New Jersey. Makes me remember when the WWF was involved with drag racing-- That's when I got to hang out with Stephanie McMahon and others from the wrestlin' world--Anyways, my condolences to Randy Savage's family and friends... Today isn't the end of the world, but I believe that the earth is going to get thrown off its axis when the "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS" appear at E'Town. Heads-Up doorslammers invade the Old Bridge strip today! Be There!!

SINCE THE WORLD MIGHT BE ENDING TODAY...

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It's finally here. Today is May 21st. According to Harold Camping, an Evangelical geezer blowhard (that's right, drag racing isn't the only part of our culture occasionally intellectually poisoned by geezer blowhards, it appears that some over-zealous religious institutions have their share too, ha ha). Harold Camping claims the earth will be destroyed TODAY because of mankind's many sins. This is nothing new, Evangelical blowhard Harold Camping has predicted the end of the world for dates in the past, and has obviously been wrong, but just in case he's right this time, I'd like to say some things as the alleged impending doom lurks over us all... I'd like to express my appreciation to all the racers and fans in the drag racing community (from all over the globe) who've been my friends over the years. I love drag racing and I definitely am thankful for this straightline sport enhancing my life. And I'm glad that I've been able to give back and "pay it forward" through my work with Drag Racing Underground. Almost every time I go to the drag strip, I have people come up to me and say stuff like, "I grew up on your Drag Racing Underground videos", or, "My kid grew up on your videos.", etc, etc-- THAT really makes me feel good, knowing that I played a small role in making life a little better for some good folks. And yes, I'm really glad I did the whole BIG STICK music thing, I got to see the world, meet a lot of great people, work with some great musicians, most recently, folks like Fred Schneider of the B-52s, Johnny Kelly of Type O Negative, Danzig, etc-- Of course it's a shame that we haven't completed our newest album before Harold Camping says our world is coming to an end, but hey, those are the breaks. In closing, I'd like to say that I still remain skeptical that the world is really gonna end today, because Oprah Winfrey still has a couple of shows left before her final broadcast, and I doubt very strongly that God would put an end to it all before Oprah gets to say her final goodbyes, that just ain't gonna happen...

Pat Musi experienced a bad crash while piloting Frank Brandao's Pro Mod Stratus at NHRA's Southern Nationals. It was during qualifying, when Pat hit hard into the Atlanta strip's shutdown area guardwall-- Resulting in a fractured vertebrae. As the late Jonathon Harris who played the role of "Dr. Smith" on the 60's TV show "LOST IN SPACE" used to say, "Oh, the pain, Oh, the pain!". Fortunately Pat's a strong guy and was able to endure the pain of the injury and the discomfort of the surgery that followed. According to what Pat Musi told Bobby Bennett's drag ezine COMPETITION PLUS, “They put six, eight inch columns in my back and then they had to go back and stitch it up,” Musi said, explaining the surgery on his back. “To be honest, they looked like valve springs.” Pat is now at home in Carteret, NJ (just a stone's throw from my Jersey home) and he's on the mend. I've known Pat Musi and his brother Ralph (a skilled driver in his own right) for many, many years. My personal cars receive the Midas, er, I mean, "Musi Touch"-- I recall several years ago when Drag Racing Underground and I covered the unveiling of Pat's very first dyno room in Carteret. And you may or may not know that before Pat Musi became the "Outlaw Doorslammer" sensation he is today, he used to be quite the threat in NHRA's Pro Stock ranks. Here at Drag Racing Underground we wish Pat only the very best in his current state of recovery-- Like I said earlier, Pat's a strong guy, so I'm sure he'll return to the track with renewed health and vigor. You can't keep that "Musi Muscle" down for long-- because I know that PAT MUSI is JERSEY STRONG...

Let's face the hard facts, a lot of us hardcore doorslammer peeps have been going through serious withdrawal since the E'Town Ultra Quick 8 class terminated. Fortunately now, we have the "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS" series to provide us with our dastardly doorslammin' fix!! We can all rejoice in knowing that wild and wooly "back half", big tire, factory appearing cars that use every imaginable way to make horsepower are back on the ETown track! Some of the legendary doorcar racers you'll see include "Charlie Boy" Micallef, John Schroeder, Cheman Bros, Mike Ingrossio and Vinny Pace among others. Be sure to write these dates on your calendar May 22, June 12, July 31 and Aug 21! The "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS" will continue the long and historic tradition of Old Bridge Township Raceway Park being known as the home of raucous and radical doorslammer racing. I'm confident that the "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS" are going to rattle your cage and jolt your senses!!

The Jim Harrington Memorial High School Challenge Race takes place Sunday, May 22nd at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park. A special class for this date will be open to any student who graduated or will be graduating from High School in 2011. The lucky (and skilled) winner will be awarded with a Raceway Park embroidered jacket and will attend the NHRA Division 1 Summit E.T. Finals to help represent the Raceway Park team on September 22, 23 and 24 at U.S. 13 Dragway. The qualifications are as follows-- Car must be 12:00 ET or slower, must be stock-appearing, all 4 tires MUST be D.O.T. approved-- NO SLICKS, and no electronics are allowed. Street-type exhaust required, and of course students must have a valid driver's license. 17-year-olds must have a guardian or parent on premises or have a signed AND notarized insurance release form. The late Jim Harrington holds a special place in my heart. When I first began my career with Drag Racing Underground, it was Jim who would always take the time to explain to me the very basics, as well as the many subtle nuances of Bracket Racing. Let's face it, Jim was one of the most successful Bracket & Sportsman racers the sport has ever seen. Jim was a kind man with the patience to endure all my silly questions when I was first learning the ropes. He didn't have any hangups about me being a woman, Jim was "man enough" to not let that get in the way. For that I will always be grateful. Just last week, I was in the RaceZone restaurant/bar, the place down the road from Raceway Park, the establishment formerly known as Cantores and Vitalies, up on the wall was a photo of Jim to honor his memory, lots of us real racin' folks miss Jim Harrington, even the racers he used to beat round after round at the strip.

Several years ago accusations were flying from some NHRA drag fans insisting that Kenny Bernstein had a "facelift"-- I believe Kenny denied the alleged "facelift" charges-- No matter what the case, it sure stirred up quite a fuss among those who follow drag racing (uh, maybe those who follow it too close for their own good, if you know what I mean)... Anyways, now we have this controversy over an 8 year old California girl, 'cause her mother injected her with botox in order to give her daughter a "competitive edge" in one of those kiddie beauty pageants, you know, the kind you see on that weird "Toddlers and Tiaras" TV show-- Now "Child Services" have taken the little girl away from her mom... I tell ya, this whole botox and cosmetic surgery biz is really becoming a runaway train in our culture... And of course there's Chaz Bono, who is getting so much props & praise from the media as being "courageous" for having his/her girl boobies surgically removed, from what we're seeing on all the network talk shows, you'd think Chaz Bono is more courageous than the Navy Seals who took out Bin Laden-- Go figure??-- Whether it's drag fans bickering about the old "Bud King's" face, or 8 year old beauty pageant babes shooting-up botox, the controversy over cosmetic modification won't be going away anytime soon...

Rick "Surf" Stambaugh passed away Fri, May 13. Rick was one of the few people involved with the current Nostalgia Funny Car scene/revival who actually participated in the "real thing" back in the 1970s. Up in the banner here on the Drag Racing Underground site, there's a couple of pics of the Stambaugh "New Generation" red Corvette-- We decided to include Rick's car in our main banner, not just 'cause it's a groovy lookin' ride, but because we genuinely like Rick a whole lot. I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Rick at ETown's Nostalgia Summernats/Funny Car Reunion. He was there with his "New Generation" 'Vette flopper. The car piloted by Rick's son, Matt, with daughter Robin crewing. Rick was a really nice guy, I know that, 'cause he was real nice to me. Rick was a gentleman. I sincerely hope that Rick's death isn't in vain among the Nostalgia Funny Car community-- I hope those currently involved with this scene who choose to represent it with little or no sense of respect and dignity will take a lesson from Rick, the way Rick acted and treated people-- If everyone in the scene carried themselves like Rick did, and represented this scene with the kind of class that he did, we'd be in a much better place. You can see my interview with Rick on our FUNNY CAR REUNION RAW dvd. I watched my interview with Rick this morning-- Yeah, we're lucky that Rick decided to be a part of the scene. Rick Stambaugh will definitely be remembered by lots of us. Our condolences to his family. R.I.P.

Yesterday I decided to take a much earned "vacation day" away from business. As far as the weather goes, it was one of the most ideal days in recent memory. Spent the day on the Jersey shore in Point Pleasant. The beach was beautiful and there were some pretty serious waves breaking-- The cool mist emanating from the breaking waves felt like a million bucks. Noticed a lot of girls sporting the "Snookie" look, kind of a fashion throwback in my opinion, but hey, to each his/her own. Had a nice lunch at Martell's Tiki Bar. Don't forget that there's two major events you should seriously consider for this weekend-- Mopars At E'Town Sat & Sun May 14 & 15-- And everybody's fave Mopar guy rocker, Johnny Kelly will be playin' drums with DANZIG at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville NJ Sat Nite May 14-- Mopars and Rock 'n' Roll-- That's a hot combination, baby!-- Maybe I'll see ya there?