Gainesville: Doug Herbert preview

Herbert Plans for Busy and Sentimental Gainesville Race Weekend GAINESVILLE, Fla. (March 12, 2008) For Doug Herbert, owner and driver of the SnaponFranchise.com Top Fuel dragster, this weekend's ACDelco NHRA Gatornationals will be more...

Herbert Plans for Busy and Sentimental Gainesville Race Weekend

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (March 12, 2008) For Doug Herbert, owner and driver of the SnaponFranchise.com Top Fuel dragster, this weekend's ACDelco NHRA Gatornationals will be more sentimental than most. The event will mark Herbert's 313th NHRA Top Fuel start. It doesn't seem like a very sentimental number, until you hear the story.

Less than two months ago, Herbert's two sons, Jon, 17, and James, 12, lost their lives in a tragic automobile accident. James, an active Boy Scout working toward the same Eagle Scout rank as his father, was part of Troop 313 in Huntersville, N.C. Even through his pain, Herbert remains an active member of Troop 313, helping other young men work toward their Eagle Scout.

"I enjoy being part of Troop 313," said Herbert. "It might be a little selfish, but it helps me to help them. I think James would want me to stay involved and work with his friends, so that is exactly what I am going to do."

On hand in the Snap-on pit area will be musician Jimmie Van Zant, showing his support for Herbert and BRAKES (www.putonthebrakes.com), the program Herbert is developing to help educate teen drivers on the consequences of unsafe driving.

Van Zant will be presenting Herbert with an autographed guitar to be auctioned off to raise funds for BRAKES.

"I can't thank Jimmie and his people enough for wanting to get involved," said Herbert. "They really want to help us make a difference and it means a lot to us."

ESPN2 will air a feature story on Herbert, his boys and the BRAKES program during this weekend's coverage of the ACDelco NHRA Gatornationals.

After a busy two weekends off and a busy weekend ahead, Herbert looks forward to climbing back into the seat of the SnaponFranchise.com dragster.

"I love racing," said Herbert. "It's what I do. We tested after Phoenix, and made really good progress. We needed those laps, and we learned a lot from them.

"We are going to capitalize on what we learned and our motivation to win. Taking home a Gatornationals win and dedicating it to my boys would be great, and that's what we plan on doing."

-credit: dhr

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert