Rachel Bolan, bass player for the hard rock group Skid Row, is making music on and off the track this summer as a Legends Car racing rookie in the Hardee's Summer Shootout at Lowe's Motor Speedway.
Like music, Bolan has been interested in racing since he was a youngster.
And focus Bolan must to make his fans proud, since they sponsor his black No. 73 Legends Car. Skid Row fans make donations to Rachel Bolan Motorsports, and in return, receive packages with band merchandise, concert tickets and backstage passes.
"When they come backstage, I get to personally thank them for their efforts. It's cool to have the support of people whose lives you have been a part of for the past 15 to 18 years. My fans get to be involved in something I am passionate about," Bolan noted.
While Skid Row fans can watch Bolan perform both on the track and stage, the rocker says there are similarities in the two performances.
"High adrenaline and high RPM, it all kind of goes hand in hand. You get out there and do what you love in front of a crowd of people," Bolan explained. "But when I walk onstage, I don't have to worry about flipping. Racing is a little more intense, but maybe that's because I haven't been doing it very long."
Bolan will continue to rock the Hardee's Summer Shootout each Tuesday night through Aug. 17. Nearly 160 race cars are expected to jam the pit area for a full slate of Legends Car, Bandolero and Thunder Roadster racing.
"Racing got into my blood at an early age. I used to go with my big brother to watch stock cars in New Jersey and drag racing at Englishtown," Bolan explained.
Bolan has competed in a few celebrity races, but has become a regular Legends Car competitor at such tracks as Concord Motorsports Park, Atlanta Motor Speedway, Lanier Raceway and Hickory Motor Speedway.
"I like racing at Lanier because it is a faster, banked track, but now that I've started racing at Lowe's Motor Speedway the two tracks are neck and neck," Bolan said.
The Point Pleasant, N.J., native was a huge fan of seven-time NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt and he carries a No. 3 with Earnhardt's signature on the dashboard of his Legends Car. In another unique connection with his late hero, one of Bolan's racing advisors is Stevie Reeves, a former driver who works as the spotter for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series.
Bolan now lives in Atlanta and makes the 260-mile weekly commute
Skid Row was formed in 1986 and has produced six albums featuring such hits as "Youth Gone Wild," "18 and Life" and "I Remember You."
While music is Bolan's livelihood, his passion is driving race cars and the 40-year-old rocker is making steady progress despite missing the first three rounds of the 10-week Hardee's Summer Shootout due to Skid Row's concert schedule.
"So far so good," Bolan said about his performance. "I have been qualifying and keeping my car in one piece, and that's always good."
Skid Row's Rachel Bolan is having a blast racing in the Summer Shootout at Lowe's Motor Speedway. (Lowe's Motor Speedway photos by Harold Hinson)
to participate in the Hardee's Summer Shootout at Lowe's Motor Speedway.
"When I get about half-way the adrenaline starts to kick in, so I don't really notice the drive," Bolan said. "The competition, racing in general and seeing my friends is my motivation for making the trip each week. When I'm on the track, I have nothing else to focus on but driving."