women dominate drive for diversity hopefuls

Drivers at the 2009 Drive for Diversity Combine pose for a group photo before the on-track portion of the event at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)Last Monday and Tuesday was the Drive for Diversity combine at Motor Mile Speedway in Virginia. 30 candidates, the majority of which were female, were invited to compete for 10 spots in the 2010 Drive for Diversity class.

After the two-day sessions were completed the following drivers were selected: Mackena Bell, Michael Cherry, Katie Hagar, Juan Pitta, Rebecca Kasten, Paul Harraka, Jessica Brunelli, Ryan Gifford, Sergio Pena, and Darrell Wallace Jr.

My main reason for talking about the Drive for Diversity combine this year was to point out how many young female drivers are out there that want to compete in NASCAR.

These are the girls that the media should be falling all over themselves to talk about and champion. These women are the future of NASCAR and they deserve our support to get them to NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series. So forget about Danica for 5 seconds and take some time to learn about Mackena, Katie, Rebecca and Jessica.


Mackena Bell, of Carson City, Nev., gets driving tips during Wednesday as part of NASCAR Driver for Diversity Combine at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Mackena Bell, of Carson City, Nev., gets driving tips during Wednesday as part of NASCAR Driver for Diversity Combine at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. “I got to do so many things this year,” Bell said, “and without the Drive for Diversity program, I wouldn’t even be fortunate enough to be in a race car. I am very thankful to be back in the program this year –- at the Combine –- and am just hoping we can get a spot on Revolution Racing and we can excel from there.” (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Laura Hayes of Wilton, Calif. prepares to takes laps around Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. on Day One of the 2009 Drive for Diversity Combine. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Laura Hayes of Wilton, Calif. prepares to takes laps around Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. on Day One of the 2009 Drive for Diversity Combine. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Drivers Katie Hagar and Natalie Sather watch as fellow drivers test NASCAR Camping World series cars on Day 2 of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity Combine at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Drivers Katie Hagar and Natalie Sather watch as fellow drivers test NASCAR Camping World series cars on Day 2 of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity Combine at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va. Hagar’s performance at last year’s Drive for Diversity Combine Hlanded her a ride in the 2009 Drive for Diversity class with Golden State Racing, and Sather earned NASCAR Whelen All-American Series rookie of the year honors running Late Models in Washington. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Dylan Smith of Randolph, Vt., watches Michael Cherry of Valrico, Fla., make laps on an iRacing simulator at Motor Mile Speedway. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Dylan Smith of Randolph, Vt., watches Michael Cherry of Valrico, Fla., make laps on an iRacing simulator at Motor Mile Speedway. (Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCAR)

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