STELLARTON, N.S. – You could say he’s a chip off the old engine block.
Nine-year-old Bryson MacNeil just finished his rookie year of drag racing.
The Stellarton resident, you might say, has drag racing in his DNA; his dad Jason has raced dragsters for years and is still at the sport.
“When you get used to it, it’s not scary,” says the well-spoken Bryson, who attends École acadienne de Truro, a public Franophone school in Truro.
“It was a little bit scary at first but I knew that my dad did it, so it’s not that dangerous.”
Bryson first started going to the drag racing track when he was just three months old, tagging along as his father raced various at tracks.
“He’s been around it his whole life,” says Jason MacNeil, who has been drag racing for nearly 25 years.
“It’s a real family-oriented sport.”
Bryson lists off the family members who have raced competitively over the years.
“Well, my sister Hannah used to race,” he says, looking thoughtful.
“My mom raced once with a truck. She raced it once, though, and she never did it after that. My cousins race, and my cousin’s father, and my cousin’s grandfather. And my dad’s dad used to do it.”
All the young racers who compete on the drag racing circuit get along with each other, even if they are trying to beat each other on the track.
“They have a really good group with the junior class, the junior dragsters,” said Jason MacNeil. “In his class, they’re all different ages, between eight and 18, but they’re a really tight group – the older ones watch out for the younger ones.”
• Car is a 2007 KCS Jr. Dragster with a Briggs and Stratton L206 engine.
• Fastest time this season was 11.80 @ 55mph on the 1/8th mile track.
• The big race MacNeil won in July was an NHRA National Open in Napierville, Que., just outside Montreal.
• Finished 2nd overall in points at Cape Breton Dragway.
• Garnered Best Car Appearance awards at both the Moncton Speed Sport car show, as well as the East Coast Jr. Dragster Nationals in Miramichi, N.B.