Need for speed: Karen Snider, Joy Cozzette get quickly addicted to drag racing

Joy Cozette stand outside of her 1977 Chevy Vega wagon at the dragway.

Karen Snider, sitting inside of a 1991 Ford F-150 pickup recently at Western Colorado Dragway, is addicted to racing after giving it a try this summer.

Karen Snider and Joy Cozzette have seen a lot of racing.

Snider has watched her boys race for years. Cozzette watches her husband and is even in his pit crew.

This year, the two are giving drag racing a try for themselves and they are loving it.

“It is really fun,” Snider said. “It’s addicting. I want to do better and better. You want to go faster.”

“It’s either this or pull weeds,” Cozzette said.

Snider, 47, is racing a car that belongs to her son, Jake — a 1991 Ford F-150 pickup with a Victory Circle Chassis.

“We were going to sell (the truck), then Rodney (Snider) said, ‘Let’s drag it,” she said. “He told everyone I was doing it, so I’m doing it. Rodney changed it to go straight instead of an oval.”

Cozzette, a 49-year-old grandmother, has been faithfully going to Western Colorado Dragway with her husband to watch him race and help him make adjustments to his race car.

“Joy knows how to work and wire a car,” John Cozzette said. “I needed a new starter in my (race) car and she changed it for me.”

Last year, they started talking about Joy racing.

That’s when the Cozzettes made a trade with track managers Doug and Teri Styers for the 1977 Chevy Vega wagon.

“John was like, ‘It that something you want to do?’ I said, ‘Sure,’ ” Joy said. “When you’re pit crew, you do a lot of work. You might as well be having fun too.”

Cozzette came out for some practice runs in May and started racing July 3, the same weekend Snider started racing.

The two met each other at the track by happenstance earlier this year and have talked a lot about racing.

“We talked a lot about going the first time,” Snider said. “We are learning together.

“She is a great person. It’s nice to talk to someone and compare how you are doing.”

Snider and Cozzette have caught on quick.

Cozzette reached the semifinals in the sportsman class in her first race. Her best reaction time is 0.005 seconds.

“It’s great,” John said of Joy racing. “That’s why we built her a car. She’s very competitive.”

Snider hasn’t reached the semifinals, but she posted a 0.004 reaction time and was as close as two-thousands of a second too quick on one run the last time out.

Mile High Nationals

Scott Allen of Grand Junction reached the semifinals of the Super Street Class at Mile High Nationals last weekend. He crossed the finish line first, but was one-thousandth of a second too fast on the start. Sean McMillan, of Rifle, reached the fourth round in the Super Comp class. Jim Hughes of Grand Junction made it to the third round in the Stock Eliminator class before he was eliminated.


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