Passion Behind The Peddle... Amarillo Street Racing

Many young drivers are causing danger on the roads at night because more and more are street racing.

Some racers call it a passion for nice cars, respect and fun. Local street racers say they are not looking to cause trouble or hurt anyone, but feel they are targets of police harassment.

One local racer, Eddie says he has been racing for years. Sometimes on timed tracks other times on Amarillo streets.  He says driving cars like these gives him the drive to drive fast.  "I  got a passion for cars and I like going fast but you have to watch what your doing and be safe about it ," describing his love for cars.

Safety is the concern that everyone has when they see drivers like these on the streets.  Racers feel they are being targeted because their cars are different with exhaust, gauges and the bonus of going fast. "If they hear your exhaust or see your exhaust or body kits on your car they're going to get behind you.. Harass you follow you until you make a mistake so they can pull you over," Eddie said.

Danny Alexander with the Randall County Sheriff's department says deputies are not trying to target anyone. "I'm sure they feel that way at some point but they're the ones driving crazy and if we're stopping them for some minor violation is because we have other reasons to get in their business," Alexander said.

That need for speed has cost racers and Eddie thousands of dollars in citations. "I have 6 tickets as of right now. I haven't paid on them but about 1500 in tickets. Like many other racers Eddie says people and the police don't understand the enthusiasm behind nice cars and the power they possess. "They just don't understand why we do it and what were about. We're not about driving crazy and killing people. Its about that doing what we love to do." Eddie said.

A love, that has hundreds of drivers out on Friday or Saturday night living with their love for cars. There is a track here in Amarillo that allows cars to come out and race but during the winter months it is closed down. Leaving the only option for racers the roadways of Amarillo, such as Hillside, 45-th Street and Western Street.

Amarillo Police since the beginning of November motorcycle officers have seen an increase in the number of citations written in the areas of Soncy, Hillside and Coulter. Corporal Jerry Neufeld said in one night officers issued 25 speeding citations, 17 non-moving violations and 10 warnings.