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Racing, Not Just for the Boys

Charissa Dudley races the No. 27 Ford at Oglethorpe Charissa Dudley races the No. 27 Ford at Oglethorpe
Dudley has Daddy's Girl on the back of her machine Dudley has Daddy's Girl on the back of her machine
Dudley preps her machine for the race Dudley preps her machine for the race
Dudley races around the track Dudley races around the track

When the pavement ends, the racing begins.

And behind the wheel not who'd you'd expect, he is a she. As in Charissa Dudley, driver of the #27 Ford in the mini stocks division. And she races at Oglethorpe Speedway Park

" I love it," she says, "there's nothing better than beating the men."

Charissa's love affair with racing began long before she even got her driver's license.

"I started racing go carts when I was 7 years old, so I've been racing pretty much half my life." she says.

And now as a rookie on the circuit, Charissa is holding her own.

She's currently the top rookie in her class and sitting pretty in the top 10 but it hasn't been easy climbing her way to the top.

"It's tough especially in this class, it's been rough but I'm catching on quick, I love it."

And the other drivers pay no mind to the fact that there's a female behind the wheel, after all rubbin' is racing.

"They treat me like one of the guys," she says, "and I wouldn't want it any other way."

She's one of the guys on the track, but at home, she's mom.

"I take care of my kids, normal mom stuff, they all love it, especially my dad because he's been my crew chief since I was 7 years old, my husband and my kids, they all support me, 100%."

But when she's behind the wheel she's daddy's girl.

Reported by: Melissa Maikos, mmaikos@wtoc.com

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