The Twins live a dream in Pomona POMONA, Calif. (November 5, 2007) -- When Australian-native twin sisters Kate and Diana Harker came to America, it was to follow a dream of competitively drag racing in the NHRA, and last weekend in...
The Twins live a dream in Pomona
POMONA, Calif. (November 5, 2007) -- When Australian-native twin sisters Kate and Diana Harker came to America, it was to follow a dream of competitively drag racing in the NHRA, and last weekend in Pomona, Calif., the women fulfilled part of that dream, competing in the same class together for the first time at the Lucas Oil NHRA Sportsman Drag Racing Series at the Auto Club of Southern California NHRA Finals as both 24-year-olds qualified in the Top Alcohol Dragster class.
Kate, who has been a threat all year in her Tom Conway-tuned Torco/Skull Shine A/Fuel Dragster, blasted her way to an impressive semifinal finish while her sister, Diana, in just her first National event, qualified strongly in her ProCare Rx-sponsored dragster at No. 10 and was defeated first round by veteran Duane Shields, 5.502/270.27 to Diana's 5.836 198.79.
"Just to race at Pomona and qualify for such a tough field was a victory for me," Diana said. "We had a good run going against Duane until about half-track, when I lost a couple of cylinders and had to click it off. Randy [Meyer, car owner/crew chief] said I did everything right on that one, because if I had pushed it any more, it would have completely destroyed the motor, which I definitely didn't want to do.
"It's been great working with Randy and his entire team, and I can't thank him and Roger Burgess [ProCare Rx Chairman and CEO] enough for the opportunity this year. I've learned so much and am really looking forward to what will happen next year," Diana said.
Kate ran well all weekend, qualifying No. 5 with a 5.295 second run, and performing consistently in the 5.30-second range until her last run. She defeated Shawn Cowie first round with a 5.312/267.37, and the hard-running Aaron Olivarez second round with a near-perfect .001 reaction time and 5.316/264.49 pass to Olivarez' slower 5.349/270.37.
Kate said, "I knew I had to cut a light against Aaron, and I definitely did on that one. He's always tough, and Tom [Conway, car owner and crew chief] and I talked about really going for it on that run. We both did our jobs, and it felt really good."
In her semifinal round, Kate was paired against eventual event-winner Bill Reichert, and was again faced with throwing everything at him in attempt to win. Track conditions had changed from the previous round, and despite cutting an impressive .022 light to his .080, immediately after the hit of the throttle her tires smoked, and Reichert blasted away for the win at 5.278/270.05 to her 11.847/82.92.
"The track is really what bit us on that one. We just didn't have the traction we needed, and he just flew away.
"All in all, though, we had an incredible year, and I think drivers have to take us very seriously now when they see us at the line. I can't thank Tom Conway and Evan Knoll [Torco Race Fuels/Skull Shine Owner] enough for their support and this opportunity. They have made a dream come true for me and Diana," Kate said.
The Harker twins plans for the 2008 season are still being finalized according to Kate, and will be announced hopefully before the end of the year.