CHARLOTTE (Sept. 14) — Sportsman star Mia Tedesco hopes to be rushed during the NHRA Carolina Nationals this weekend in Charlotte. Tedesco will again pull double duty at the national event, driving the CARS Protection Plus/Schepel Motors/NGK/Lucas Oil Top Alcohol Dragster and CARS Protection Plus/VP Racing Fuels Super Gas Chevrolet Cavalier.
“Charlotte has treated me well these past two years,” Tedesco said. “I really like it here. You always kind hope that you’re rushed to change and run both classes because that means you did well in both. The goal would be to be rushed and have to jump from car to car.”
Despite driving in two distinctly different classes, Tedesco has been rushed from one car to another “plenty of times” in her young career. It has happened so much that the 22-year-old has gotten used to the rush of going from one to the other.
“That happens quite often actually,” Tedesco said. “It isn’t a problem until you start going rounds in both classes. At the St. Louis divisional, I made it to the semi’s of Super Gas and won (Top) Alcohol (Dragster), and there was a point where they called Alcohol and Super Gas to the lanes at the same time. I ran up there and said, ‘Which one do you want to go in?’ “
She chose the dragster, made the run in the longer car, then hurried back after changing and drove the Super Gas car, but it has happened before.
“It’s crazy, for sure,” Tedesco said. “There will be times when I race Alcohol and there will be somebody waiting for me at the top end, and they fly me back to the motorhome, where I’ll change and fly me to the lanes. My car’s already in the lanes waiting for me.
“I’m used to it and really like it. I grew up bracket racing, and you’re used to racing all day from car to car. I like it.”
It’s not a simple matter to go from one car to the other, as Tedesco wears a different firesuit for each and it takes time to get ready for each car.
“Everything changes,” Tedesco said. “The procedure is different, the uniform is different. In the Alcohol car, I wear a one-piece Stand 21 21-layer suit with Nomex underneath. I wear heavy gloves, a Hybrid (head-and-neck restraint), a Top Fuel-type helmet from Stand 21, racing shoes. In my Super Gas car, I just wear a two-piece, five-layer suit, my Hybrid, helmet, and gloves.”
Could she have to hurry from one car to another in Charlotte? She hopes so.
“It’s always likely, depending on how everything goes,” Tedesco said. “It depends on how NHRA decides to call them and the schedule and how it plays out. In Charlotte last year when I won at the Four-Wide race, I made it to the semi’s in Super Gas and won Alcohol. They called them both at the same time, and you have to run and make it work somehow.”