10/06/09 — Powder puffs take on demolition derby track

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Powder puffs take on demolition derby track

By Laura Collins
Published in News on October 6, 2009 1:46 PM

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Wendy Lane steers her 702 car into the mix of other female derby drivers during the Powder Puff Demolition Derby Monday at the Wayne Regional Agricultural Fair.

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Powder Puff Demolition Derby winner Wendy Lane, right, receives her trophy from 2009 Queen of the Fair Hannah Singleton Monday.

The first Powder Puff Demolition Derby at the Wayne Regional Agricultural Fair got off to a smashing start.

"There's nothing like the smell of antifreeze on a Monday night," announcer Charlie Belknap said.

The rain and wet track caused some problems with traction early on.

"They need snow tire chains out there this evening," Belknap said. "It looks like they're fighting for a parking spot at Food Lion."

As the rain eased, the hits came harder and the cars were spitting out more smoke than a barbecue.

Five women competed for the winner's trophy, but Wendy Lane, 26, took home the honors.

"My husband does it, and I wanted to do it," she said. "I love it. It's fun. It was a really good round."

She said she has competed twice before at Nahunta but added that she doesn't have a strategy for winning. It seemed that it was her persistence that paid off, after spending much of the final minutes continuously reversing into her competitors, whose cars stalled with almost every hit.

Mrs. Lane drove Car 702, a 1976 Pontiac Catalina, which held up nicely to the many hits it took throughout the near 40-minute round.

Nikki Goins placed second, Ashley Widener was third, Brandi McDonald was fourth and Angela Kennedy was fifth.

After the race, the women celebrated by hugging and congratulating each other, which might have been one of the only differences in the Powder Puff Derby, event officials pointed out.

Ms. Widener, although she took third, was likely the most aggressive driver in the competition, and it showed by the looks of her car, which had a barely visible back end at the conclusion of the competition.

"Besides me going for myself and all them working together, I think I did pretty good," she said. "I was going against a bunch of hardcores, but it was a lot of fun. I promise you I'll be back next year. I'm going to try to get first place next year."

Pam Aycock, who manages the derby, said she considers the first female derby at the fair a success.

"I think it went fantastic. They put on a great show and did some banging and did a great job. And they probably would have kept celebrating afterwards if we didn't have to close," she said. "We're going to really work hard at keeping this up.

Ms. Aycock also commended the fans watching the derby.

"To sit out here, raining like it was, I think they were dedicated, and they really loved it," she said.

The fair will have another men's Demolition Derby at 1:30 p.m. Saturday in the Grandstand.