Lea “Dream Catcher” Martinez – A true fighter on and off the track
Racing is in Lea’s blood. Her father used to race pro stock cars and her brother and my step sister raced motorcycles. So it was only natural to catch the fever for racing. Her goal is to turn pro with pink ribbons a’blazing. Not only is she a drag racer, she is a SURVIVOR!
Unlike others in the industry, Lea didn’t begin riding until she was 37. However, she quickly up made for lost time and within a mere six months she was learning how to drag race.That was five years ago. In 2009 she was diagnosed with ductal carcinomaI (the most common type of breast cancer) ending her reconstructive surgeries in September of 2010. She along with her 2007 Suzuki Hayabusa have been racing, fighting and raising awareness steadfastly ever since. Check the interview:
Crystal: Tell me a little about yourself. How long have you been drag racing? How did you get involved? What keeps you motivated and some personal things others may not know?
Lea: I am a wife and mother of two amazing children, Samantha 22 and Victor 14. I am a breast cancer SURVIVOR 2 & 1/2 yrs out now. I have always loved drag racing, probably because my father raced pro-stock cars when I was very young. I also had a love for motorcycles, but never had the opportunity to learn until later in life. It wasn’t until I was 37 when I got on a bike for the first time and was hooked! I started drag racing locally in Florida and then continued on with AMA PROStar in 2006. It’s been a long road with big obstacles and potholes, but I’m knocking down obstacles and stomping in the potholes moving forward with the help of my family and friends. I certainly believe it’s worthwhile as things are coming together thanks to the support of caring individuals in my corner.
Crystal: How do you feel being a female in a male dominated sport?
Lea: I like it because I’m competitive by nature. I feel like simply pulling up to stage sometimes gets in their heads. However, at the same time I don’t believe we’re given opportunities to prove ourselves because they think “oh she’s a woman, she can’t handle all this power”. If they only knew, lol…..
Crystal: What are your goals for the 2012 season and beyond?
Lea: That’s easy. To be the best racer I can be with always working to win and continue to raise awareness for breast cancer and help others whenever I possibly can. I’m also going to continue to work hard for my sponsors by giving their products or services as much exposure as possible. They believe in me and I certainly believe in them.
Crystal: What sponsors would you like to recognize and thank?
Lea: I definitely have to recognize and sincerely thank ARD-Enterprises.com, Inc, RedLineDesign, FJ Motorsports, Evil SwingArms, Rivtor Media, Urban Cowgirls. Larry “SpiderMan” Mc Bride, Cp/Carrillo, Cometic Gaskets, Millennium Technologies, Kibble White, K & N, Web Cams, Williford Racing and Cooper Performance – this is the team that helped with the motor rebuild with a huge Thanks to Larry for making that possible!
For more on this dynamic and inspirational personality check out her site: leamartinezracing.com
Photo credits: Lea Martinez with professional photos by Black Onyx Studios