A drag racing family from Hershey, Pennsylvania, it's a monochrome description for a full-spectrum, and then some, family, and it's how the Bell Family Racing team describe themselves. Rick Bell and his wife Stephanie have three daughters, Amber is the youngest, then comes Allison, followed by Heather.
Amber proudly displays her first round trophy from the team's last race at Maple Grove Raceway.
For them drag racing isn't a simple hobby pursued occasionally, it's their way of life, and the bond that binds this exceptional family together. By their own estimate they spend somewhere around 22 weeks a year on the road pursuing that passion, and it's anyone's guess how much more time is directed towards racing from home.
Allison and her life-size double at the Motorama Car Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Rick uses the same neutral tones when bringing us up to date on how things are going with the K&N sponsored family team. "Well, Amber's junior (dragster) is finally together, up and running. She made it to the second points race this past weekend and went two rounds. She came home with a trophy [from Maple Grove Raceway]. Not a bad way to start off the season."
"Allison will be graduating from high school on June 7th. We, of course, are very proud of her."
Amber loves racing her new car with its Mountain Valley Customs paint job at Maple Grove Raceway.
"Heather is doing well and getting ready to have her baby next month."
When we spoke last season, Heather had just passed along her junior dragster to Amber, what changes, if any, have you made to the car?
"We got a new body for the car and we were sponsored a paint job, which turned out really well. Amber also got a new helmet which was painted to match the new body." (The paint work was done by Mountain Valley Customs in Millmont, Pennsylvania).
It appears as though Amber really likes her new car, what's her take on racing it? Also, from your perspective how is she doing overall?
"Amber loves her new car. She thinks it's awesome, and has the coolest paint job ever. She loves racing and is doing really well. She has really taken to the sport of drag racing. Her lights are really good for such a young driver. She had several races at the end of last season where she was the top qualifier. In her first race this year, she had a .28 light and was the 13th qualifier out of over 30 racers [at Maple Grove Raceway]."
Give us an update on Allison, how is her racing coming along?
"We had a little snag getting Allison into the driver's seat this year. She is driving a 1968 Camaro, but we had to do a little work on the rear end before she could get to the drag strip this year. She should be racing this weekend."
Congratulations on becoming a grandfather. What are Heather's future racing plans after the baby, or is that something she's not currently thinking about? And is there anything else in the Bell Family racing horizon that you'd care to share?
"Heather is expecting a baby boy this July. Allison is actually racing the car we got for Heather this year, but due to her pregnancy is not able to race. Heather absolutely plans on racing next year, when she will be driving the Camaro, and our plan is to build a new car for Allison for next season."
"We are just excited to be back at the [Maple Grove Raceway] track this year. Our track's points season started a little late, so we have been chomping-at-the-bit to race. Our goal is to do the best we can and to get as much exposure for our sponsors as possible. We will be at several car shows, as well as our usual racing schedule."
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