Nearly 200 people visited the Union County Dragway on Monday to spectate as the Team Aruba drag racing team tested and tuned its car to prepare for this weekend’s American Drag Racing League (ADRL) Dragstock race at zMax Dragway in Charlotte.
Monday was the first time Team Aruba has ever had a presence at Union County Dragway. Team owner Ven Eman, as well as his son — driver Trevor Eman — said they were happy to test at the dragway, which is only about eight minutes away from their shop on Whitmire Hwy.
“You’re not allowed to test on the track you race on,” Ven Eman said. “Everybody is looking for a place to test, and that’s what we want Union County Dragway to be, for ourselves and potential racers.”
Eman also said there were several reasons the team settled and set up shop in Union.
“We love Union,” he said. “It’s motorsports-friendly. The people are nice, and they support all motorsports. And we get to promote our island and racing.”
Eman said the team is also pleased with its shop’s convenient location and lack of traffic.
“South Carolina is perfect,” he said. “It’s in the middle of the racing schedule. Where we are located in Whitmire, in 20 minutes we can be on any major highway and there is no traffic. There is a team in New York. It takes them an hour just to get out of New York.”
Eman said he hopes to test and race at Union County Dragway more frequently since it is only minutes away from the team shop.
The dragway’s announcer — known simply as “Greg the hammer” — said he hopes this becomes a regular thing.
“We’ve always thought this should be Team Aruba’s personal training course,” Greg said. “They’re such a high dollar team. It’s a big production to get their car out.”
To promote the upcoming ADRL event, Team Aruba is working in conjunction with Alltel Wireless by displaying at various Alltel locations. Team Aruba displayed at an Alltel Wireless store in Rockingham, NC, on Tuesday, and the team will display at an Alltel location in Wadesboro today.
“We’re really looking forward to these appearances and working with the local stores to promote the race and some great deals they are currently running,” Trevor said.
Many in attendance at the dragway on Monday expected Trevor Eman to break the track record — 3.850 seconds — which was set by Todd Tutterow of Yadkinville, NC. Unfortunately for Trevor, however, a sprag in the transmission broke on the third pass.
“He was going for it and with a 101 60-foot, he would have been close,” said dragway owner Bryan Butler. “He said he will be back to do it.”
Keep up with Team Aruba at www.facebook.com/teamarubaracing and on Twitter @TeamArubaRacing. Find race results, team updates, videos and photos.
For more information about Union County Dragway, visit www.unioncountyscdragway.com.
The upcoming Union County Dragway schedule is as follows:
Aug. 3 — Test/Grudge/Big Dog Challenge — Gates open at 7 p.m., time trials at 8 p.m.
Aug. 4 — Test & Tune Pro Tree Challenge — Gates open at 5 p.m., time trials at 6 p.m.
Aug. 10 — Test/Grudge/Big Dog Challenge — Gates open at 7 p.m., time trials at 8 p.m.
Aug. 11 — The Quick 8 Outlaws Pro Mod and Bracket Race — Gates open at 3 p.m.