PHOTOS: So what, she’s a drag star
MOTORSPORT: When she's not belting out rock classics with her band Flame Classic Rock Band, Flame Howard tunes up her Harley-Davidson to a different beat.
On the eve of the sixth round of the Central Queensland Drag Racing Association Championship on Saturday in Benaraby, Howard wants to send a message out.
"We lost our son Jamie to brain damage after he was in a bike accident near Esk 18 years ago, so you can sit there and cry or you can send out a message," she said.
"If we can get hoons off the street and get them to test and tune their cars and bikes in off-street meets or compete in drag racing, that would be great.
"So I'm keen to keep getting the message out there."
This Saturday, Howard will compete on her 107cc 126 horsepower Harley in the V-Twin category, where she currently sits in fifth spot with two championships left after this weekend.
"There's some very close racing and there have been a couple of ties as well," Howard said.
Her bike was built by her partner Viv Jocumsen (and Flame Classic Rock Band drummer), who is a 666 Performance mechanic.
Howard, a youthful 55-year-old with a zest for life, claimed a championship and a runner-up several years ago.
"I started racing when I was 50 and you can do it at any age and it's a good and clean sport," she said.
She competed in Willowbank as well but said there was a preference of track.
"I prefer Benaraby because it has very good facilities and is run by a great bunch of volunteers," Howard said.
"I know that people come from the south to compete at Benaraby."
Howard is also keen to see more women on wheels.
"We have got a lot of great women racers and I also encourage more to get into drag racing," she said.
The Off Street Meet at Benaraby Motorsport Complex is from 6-10pm tomorrow, with the office open for entrants between 4-7pm and scrutineering from 5-7pm.
Saturday's championship starts at noon with qualifying, heats from 5-10pm and finals at the finish of the heats.