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Stephanie Herbage Leads Every Lap at Perris and Gets to Savor First Victory

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Stephanie isn't only a gifted driver she's also a full-time college student, holding down two part-time jobs.
Stephanie isn't only a gifted driver she's also a full-time college student, holding down two part-time jobs.
"There are really no words that can express how I feel. I am so overwhelmed with joy, happiness, and just all around grateful that I was given the chance to just be one of the veterans," remarked Stephanie Herbage after earning her first ever stock car race win at Perris Auto Speedway.
It required the entire Herbage Family Flying Circus team to get Stephanie’s new car into winning form at Perris Auto Speedway, which is why she shares her first win with them.
It required the entire Herbage Family Flying Circus team to get Stephanie’s new car into winning form at Perris Auto Speedway, which is why she shares her first win with them.


Last season was Stephanie's rookie year racing American Factory Stock Cars, and she competed in all but the first three races in a borrowed car, as her car was wrecked in only her third outing. But this determined Moreno Valley, California teenager wasn't about to let a little thing like a totaled racecar deter her competitive instincts.

The race in Perris, California, last week turned into a very emotional event for both Stephanie and the entire Herbage Family Flying Circus team, as they worked extremely hard to get her new racecar ready. The team struggled in the hot laps and failed to make the heat race because of fuel delivery problems, and it looked as though she wouldn't make the main event. The crew however, in a Herculean effort, corrected the problem, and Stephanie was able to start the main event on the front as a result of the inversion.

"As luck would have it, they inverted the field for the main event, placing her on the pole to start the race," explained Marti Herbage, Stephanie's mom. Marti is a Customer Account Manager at K&N Engineering, Inc.
In her car Stephanie becomes a fierce competitor, but when she's out of the car, she's a bright, friendly, young woman with a sharp sense of humor, and a growing base of adoring fans.
In her car Stephanie becomes a fierce competitor, but when she's out of the car, she's a bright, friendly, young woman with a sharp sense of humor, and a growing base of adoring fans.


With her car now running at top performance, Stephanie took an early lead, and employing her ability to hug the inside line, she managed to keep all comers at bay. She only had a couple of bobbles, where she over-steered, or got loose, but she recovered quickly enough to avoid being passed by the second place car. Stephanie went on to lead all 25-laps, holding off a field that included veteran driver Keith Woods, who rode her bumper for the final laps of the race.

"Considering the initial problems with the car, and not being in the heat race, her goal was to just do her best and finish as close to first place as possible," said Marti. "Being in the lead for so many laps was exciting, but the veteran challengers, Keith Wood and Jeff Gullim made her nervous. Being able to finish in first place was equally surprising and exciting. Now she feels like a true racer!"

Even after each of the three yellow flags during the race, no one was able to beat her at the green flag. Stephanie's natural talents, honed by the experience she acquired last season, a totally dedicated crew and excellent track conditions, all contributed to the perfect storm that was her first victory.

"It really was a number of factors" confirmed Stephanie. "The car was finally running perfectly. And I also have to give some credit to the other drivers for making this a clean race when they had plenty of opportunities to take me out. Now that I've had a taste of what winning is like, I'm definitely hungry for more."

There is every reason to believe that the young K&N sponsored racer will no doubt savor more victories in the very near future, Stephanie is extremely committed to making herself the very best she can be, as she doesn't merely drive her racecar, she works with her dad and brother preparing and fixing it. Long before she developed her new found appetite for winning, she was already plenty passionate to learn all she could about the mechanics of her car.

"We would also like to be sure to mention that this was the first race at which the Herbage Family Flying Circus had a complete pit crew of four members, and all contributed a great deal to getting the car running and on the track," added Marti.

The Herbage Family Flying Circus team consists of Ken Herbage (uncle), Jason Herbage (cousin), Dan Herbage (dad), and Stephanie's boyfriend Daniel Matlock. Her brother, Matt, is co-owner of the car along with her dad. Matt is responsible for all the off-track engine and car work. Stephanie's next race is back at Perris Auto Speedway on May 7th.

Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

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