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Fast Girl: Don't Brake Until You See the Face of God and Other Good Advice from the Racetrack

Fast Girl: Don't Brake Until You See the Face of God and Other Good Advice from the Racetrack

by Ingrid Steffensen

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Life in Ingrid Steffensen’s New Jersey suburb was safe, comfortable, and predictable. A college professor, wife, and mother of a preadolescent daughter, her carefully cultivated world was comprised of the usual suspects: family, work, book clubs, yoga classes, and date nights. Then, one day—thinking she’d be a good sport and maybe learn something about what made her car-crazed husband tick—she put a helmet on her head, took her Mini Cooper to the racetrack, and learned how to drive it really, really fast. Soon, what began as a whim became a full-blown obsession—and a freeing journey of self-discovery.

In the eventful, exhilarating year that followed her first lesson, Steffenson dove head-first into high-performance driving. In the process, she discovered the terrifying and addictive thrill of pushing her limits, learning an entirely new set of skills, and tackling danger head-on—and found that doing so liberated her in a way that she hadn’t even known she needed. Fast-paced and fun, Fast Girl is the quirky, real-life chronicle of how one woman stepped outside her comfort zone, shrugged off the shackles of suburban conformity, and changed her entire perspective on life through the unlikeliest of means: racecar driving.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781580054683
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 09/11/2012
Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 264
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Ingrid Steffensen holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia, an M.A. from Yale University, and a Ph.D. in art history from the University of Delaware. She has taught art and architectural history at Princeton, Rutgers, NJIT, and Bryn Mawr, and is the author of numerous articles and books on nineteenth- and twentieth-century art and architecture. Having discovered a passion for high-performance driving and a desire to write for a broader audience, she has recently written about such topics as Frank Lloyd Wright’s automobiles, Bruce Springsteen’s dog, and the decade-long exchange of a cheap bottle of plonk between two sets of friends.

When she is not in the classroom or at home in suburban New Jersey with her husband, daughter, and tiny dog, Ingrid can be found hurtling around the racetrack with her crash helmet on and her stability control off.

Table of Contents

1 Finding Wonder Woman 6

2 So You Think You Can Drive? 19

3 An Auto Biography 29

4 Learning the Line 39

5 Embracing (in) the Rain 50

6 A Day at the Races 62

7 Life Is 93 Percent Maintenance 79

8 The Care and Feeding of the Speed Demon 92

9 Always Wear Your Lacy Panties and Other Fashion Advice for the Racetrack 106

10 Yoga, the Zen of the Racetrack, and the Mommy Mind 117

11 High-Speed Chases and the Pursuit 127

12 The Question of My Internal Apparatus 138

13 How to Make Physics Your Bitch 151

14 Tracking the Grey Wolf 161

15 Never Try to Teach a Pig to Drive 173

16 Bug Guts on the Windshield 188

17 The Best Booty Ever 201

18 I Am My Own Reality Star 210

19 W.W.C.D.D. (What Would Cameron Diaz Do? Or, the Fossil Fuel Dilemma) 219

20 Both Feet In 231

21 Mistress of My Domain 245

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