Cruising with J9: Too young for petrol love

2011-12-02 07:51

Everyone’s passion starts somewhere. My love for all things on wheels started at a very young age.

When I was old enough, I found myself hanging out at the illegal street racing spots. It was then when I knew my future had to involve motoring in some form.

While I don’t condone it these days, I can’t help checking out the scene every now and again. To justify it, I consider it to be research.

Back then, we were more responsible – at least some of my friends and I were. We’d only race at ungodly hours and when the roads were completely empty so as not to risk anyone else’s life.

Stupid yes, but it’s an indescribable thrill that leaves petrolheads wanting more.

To my horror, there are always a large number of primary school children out with their parents or older siblings on school nights at these events.

Not only is it unsafe, but children should be in bed at those hours.

There are young mothers with infants out on the streets too – bottle-feeding their kids in the passenger seats while daddy dearest is taking on a Golf Mk1 with his Opel Astra.

It’s not a scene for toddlers and I can’t fathom how parents can be that irresponsible and selfish.

It’s the same at legal racing events and it seems to be the norm out at Tarlton Raceway.

Families come out to the track along with six-month-old babies – or even younger – and sit in the cold as they cheer on their favourite cars and racers.

Other race tracks should follow WesBank racing’s lead. I wanted to take my friend’s kids along recently and realised I wouldn’t be able to because of the 15-year age restriction.

I’m all for getting children involved in motorsport, but if this is how young parents care for their children, I fear for them.

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