Understanding Life Through My Favorite Racing Quotes

School starts for me this week, and I didn’t want to miss a chance on creating one more post before it got going.

I love quotes. They can be snippets of clarity and inspiration or moments of cloudy judgment or anger; there seems to be no in-between when it comes to them, and that is what makes them great.

I want to share some of my favorite racing quotes that I have come across over the years that have given me some real inspiration.

“Sometimes you’ve just gotta lick the stamp and send it.”- Daniel Ricciardo

A daring move, late on the brakes to pass Valtteri Bottas for the top step of the podium during the 2018 Chinese Grand Prix is what concocted this beautiful quote from the self-proclaimed “Honey Badger” of Formula One.

This quote is my absolute favorite. It inspired me to branch out and apply for other jobs and be more daring in my writing. This quote is about having the right mentality, and when he saw an opening to pass Bottas, he took it. At the time, he didn’t know if it would work, but he took the chance anyway.

Take a chance. Lick the stamp.

“When you put on your helmet… you’re invincible.” – John Force

Is this the thing that has kept John Force racing for so many years? Achieving his 150th NHRA win at the age of 75, one might argue that it is.

When you are genuinely in your environment, whether that is as a professional or as a hobbyist, there is no better feeling. I’m starting to find mine within this blog, and it is something I hope everyone can discover for themselves.

“You will never know the feeling of a driver when winning a race. The helmet hides feelings that can not be understood.”- Aryton Senna

We revere our favorite race car drivers as genuine heroes-they are the men behind the mask that wheel machinery only a few can fathom.

We do not see the fear in a driver’s eyes, nor do we see their confidence. Only the driver knows the truth of their emotions. Winning is everything to these drivers; it is the purest form of validation.

Only you know your genuine emotions. Only you know when you’ve achieved validation.

“If you don’t come walking back to the pits every once in a while holding a steering wheel in your hands, you’re not trying hard enough.”- Mario Andretti

It is okay to give everything you have and still fail because failing is a part of life. It is better to try for more than to never try at all because being content is not acceptable when you can do more; be more.

Sometimes, you’ve just got to leave it all on the track.

“Simply racing a Formula One car is an achievement”- Sebastian Vettel

It is essential to have a perspective on life. We all have plans of becoming the best in our fields. We want to become the race winner, the champion, the legend. In our endless pursuit to try and be the best, we often forget that what we have achieved is monumental in itself.

I have a medium to express my thoughts on motorsports, and for right now, this is a considerable achievement.

Scott Masom

John Force: A Living Legend

Ask yourself, what do you want to do when you’re seventy-years old?
Sit in a rocking chair on top of a white porch, letting the breeze pass while you enjoy your retirement? Perhaps your plans involve traveling and seeing all the sights this world has to see. Have the great-grandkids come over for the holidays?

John Force claimed his milestone 150th Mellow Yellow NHRA Funny Car win during the Northwest Nationals last weekend; a win that seemed to elude him at every run down the track. The 16-time champion defeated Ron Capps in the finals by traveling the quarter-mile at 320.58 mph, while crossing the line with an ET (elapsed time) of 3.971 seconds.

He achieved this at seventy-years old.

Force’s best years were during the seasons of the 1990s and 2000s, where he was able to capture ten consecutive championships from 1994 to 2002. In 1993, at Texas Motorplex, Force recorded an ET under five-seconds on a quarter-mile. He was the first Funny Car driver to be officially registered by the NHRA to do so. Force also claims the record for the most #1 qualifications in NHRA history with 158 and is also a four-time champion as an owner; three in the Funny Car classification with the other coming from his daughter, Brittney Force, in Top Fuel.

He has quite literally done it all.

When Force climbed out of the car to celebrate his victory, it seemed as if he had a renewed faith within himself as he broke a 25 race winless streak. He was euphoric. He showed that he still has a passion for the sport; still has that determination to continue to prove himself to the world.

What else does he have to prove you may ask? Well, like all racers, it’s that he can still go out and win. This time, it’ll be for win 151.

Scott Masom

photo credit: Burghardt Photography