The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

By Tommy Wells
Seward Phoenix LOG 

Speed Dreamin'

Seward fifth-grader set to compete in IHRA Word Finals


September 28, 2017 | View PDF

Courtesy Photo

Seward fifth-grader Shelby Roy will be competing in the IHRA World Finals on October 16 in Memphis, Tennessee. The 10-year-old recently won three Junior division races at the Alaska Raceway Park in Palmer.

As a little girl, Shelby Roy was more interested in fast cars than Barbies. Now a fifth-grader at Seward Elementary School, the 10-year-old has something even more fun to get into-winner's circles.

Roy cemented her status as one of the top young drag racers in Alaska recently when she powered her way to three victories while competing at Alaska Raceway Park in Palmer.

""It's fun," said Roy, the daughter of Jeff and Becky Roy. "I like to drive (the car), and getting to go to new places."

Over the summer, Roy more than proved her ability on the track. She won three of the four races she competed in and earned a berth in the upcoming International Hot Rod Association World Finals. The championship-level meet will be held on October 16 at the Memphis International Raceway in Memphis, Tennessee.

Shelby inherited the desire to drive dragsters from her father and her grandfather, James Roy of Wichita Falls, Texas. A resident of Seward off-and-on for the past 20 years, Jeff Roy competes in drag racing events throughout the state, mostly competing in the Trophy Class.

Shelby participates in the Junior division, often competing against athletes almost twice her age. Drivers in the Junior division can range from 8-17 years of age.

"She does a really good job," said her father. "We're proud as we can be of her."

Courtesy Photo

The members of the Seward City Council added their names to her growing list of fans on Monday night. The council presented her with a "certificate of congratulations" and a "high-five" from Seward Mayor Jean Bardarson during a special award presentation.

"That's a pretty wonderful thing to happen," said councilwoman Deborah Altermatt. "We all want to wish her the best."

Seward Assistant City Manager Ron Long praised Shelby's effort and noted a difference from his younger days.

"During my drag racing time as a youth, I never got a high-five from a mayor," he said.

In Tennessee, Roy will be competing against some of the nation's top drivers. Should she win the World Finals, she could enjoy a major payday as well. The junior dragster winner collects $3,000 with a turn-key junior dragster valued at about $10,000.


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