Local News Story Sheds Light on the Speed Freaks of SA

A local news article on Kens 5 has been making the rounds on the San Antonio car forums. Apparently, someone informed a news reporter about the street racing scene in the city. After reading the story for myself I have a few critics.

One, why did the reporter have to use the informant’s full name and post his face? Might as well pour A1 on the guy before throwing him into a tiger exhibit. Two, there is a common phrase that is often used in articles talking about street racing. It varies, but it’s usually something like “death wish” or “thrill ride”. To emphasize the grim consequences of racing on public streets. In this story the phrase was written as “chasing death.” That is  incorrect. Street racers don’t chase death, they are not Kamikaze drivers, its death that chases them the second they change gear. There is a difference.

Lastly, the article itself gives no real information about the street racing subculture.The story is more of a warning. Making it seem like the city is about to be overrun with speed junkies. The story sticks to the formula: Interview a driver who will try his best to sound like Dom Torrero when talking about why he/she enjoys street racing. Follow it up with crash statistics and mention someone who was killed in a street race. End with a police officer’s stating on the dangers street racing or announce a crackdown on racers.

Naturally, the guy in the interview has since been roasted on the forums and one person even posted a photo of him with a description of his car. Why? Because street racers follow the same rules as fight club. What’s rule number one? “You don’t talk about fight club.”

Is Street Racing Dumb? If you Use Common Sense, Yes

Before street racers reject this, hear me out. Logic is a subjective variable when it comes to a hobby. Those that don’t get the car scene will think that what we do is a waste of money, dangerous, etc. The same way a car hobbyist who is not into baseball can question the mental stability of a hardcore Red Sox fan. If you are a street racer you have to understand that trying to defend your hobby to anyone with common sense will be difficult. Even if the person is into cars.

Street racing, through the eyes of logic, reads like this:

I’m going to invest my life savings into a vehicle, my pride and joy. Then I’m going to meet up and race my vehicle against others on public streets. At night of course, because it’s illegal. The adrenaline rush is what motivates me, and it’s so addictive! It helps push back the fear of getting arrested and seeing my vehicle get auctioned off. The fear that I could spin out across three lanes and into an innocent motorist. Or that I’ll wreck and end up dead. It’s like gambling with skill except the prize is usually just bragging rights.

Let’s be frank, the only reason why street racing is so popular is because its so easy to get into. All you need a road and two cars. No paperwork, no fees, no permission required. However, there are safer ways to get your octane kicks when it comes to driving. The risk to reward ratio is grossly unbalanced when it comes to racing in the streets.

It Only Takes One to Make All of Us Look Bad

The biggest problem motoring enthusiasts have against the street racing subculture is that it makes us all look bad. The same way one burnout can shutdown a car meet. This goes back to the 1950’s when teens in stripped out Model A’s were given titles like “Hell on wheels” for driving too fast. All it takes is one news story about a racer getting killed or killing someone else for people to start rallying against speed and driving. Police get tougher on people with performance cars, laws become stricter, and we all pay for it. We may have different tastes in cars but we all fall under the same microscope in the eyes of society.

If you have to race, take it to a track, but I know some of you racers won’t listen to that advice and to you individuals I say. Know your limits as a driver and don’t listen to your ego. Be safe everyone.


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