“Ladies and gentlemen, we got us a real surprise today.”
The announcer’s voice rolled across the stands, tinny speakers creating an echo at once grand and ridiculous. Ethel knew what was coming and made a face, darted a glare at Fonty III.
“I swear, Aunt E,” said the boy. “I got nothing to do with this.”
“One of our pioneers come by to see how we do it these days,” said the announcer. “But we can’t teach her nothin’ about stock car racing.”
Ethel turned the glare on Carrie, who sat the other side with her hands in her lap. Carrie shrugged.
“Come on, Aunt Ethel. You know you love it.”
“Let’s us give a real dirt track welcome,” said the announcer, “to a member of the first family of NASCAR and a great racer in her own right– ETHEL FLOCK MOBLEY.”
All eyes were on her. She raised her hand in what Timmy always called the “queen wave” while the announcer quickly ran through a list of all the races she had won back in the days when two thousand dollars was big money and your pit crew was your mechanic and any friends you could talk into giving up a Sunday.
This piece is a plug of sorts for a graphic novel I’ve written about the real-life Flock family. Ethel Flock Mobley and her brothers Tim, Fonty and Bob dominated the early days of the exciting new sport.