The First Lady of Dirt

The Triumphs and Tragedy of Racing Pioneer Cheryl Glass

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Pub Date 06 Feb 2024 | Archive Date 06 Feb 2024
Rowman & Littlefield, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

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Description

The incredible, little-known story of one of the most promising race car drivers in the United States who defied the odds as a Black woman in the sport of auto racing.
Early in her career, Cheryl Glass looked like a lock to become the first Black woman to compete in the Indianapolis 500. She had everything she could need to be successful in the sport of auto racing. But after being repeatedly injured and pushing for too much too soon, her racing career ended, and the rest of her life crashed with it. In The First Lady of Dirt: The Triumphs and Tragedy of Racing Pioneer Cheryl Glass, Bill Poehler follows Cheryl Glass’s meteoric rise in the world. As a child Cheryl had a brilliant mind and blew through school at a rapid pace, graduating from high school at age 16. When she started modeling, she was quickly in demand. And when Cheryl started driving race cars, she was immediately one of the best. Poehler recounts how Cheryl soon became a pioneer in the field as one of the few Black women in the sport, including the first to win the Skagit Speedway season finale as an 18-year-old rookie. But no matter how perfect her life seemed from the outside, there was more going on under the surface. She dealt with racist and sexist taunts from other drivers and fans throughout her career. She suffered major injuries, including repeated concussions. She had frequent encounters with neighbors and law enforcement. Overwhelmed by depression and mental illness, Cheryl committed suicide at age 35. Featuring exclusive interviews with Cheryl’s mother, friends, and competitors, The First Lady of Dirt tells for the first time Cheryl’s story in its entirety, from her highest highs as a race car driver to the debilitating circumstances around her death. It’s the inspiring story of a racing pioneer and a tragic tale of the pressures that are often hidden from public view until it’s too late.
Bill Poehler is an award-winning journalist who has spent his career as a reporter at the Salem Statesman Journal, part of the USA Today network in Salem, Oregon. His work has appeared in such newspapers as USA Today, Washington Times, The Indianapolis Star, The Detroit Free Press, Des Moines Register, The Tennessean, Cincinnati Enquirer and Reno Gazette-Journal as well as on Yahoo.com, MSNBC, Oregon Public Broadcasting, KGW TV, and KOIN TV. Poehler has won awards from the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association, the Best of Gannett, and from the Oregon Athletic Coaches Association for his writing and contributions as a journalist. He is the author of The Brown Bullet: Rajo Jack’s Drive to Integrate Auto Racing.

The incredible, little-known story of one of the most promising race car drivers in the United States who defied the odds as a Black woman in the sport of auto racing.
Early in her career, Cheryl...

A Note From the Publisher

This title views best in tablet-style eReaders.
This is a set of uncorrected page proofs. It is not a finished book and is not expected to look like one. Errors in spelling, page length, format and so forth will all be corrected by the time the book is published several months from now. Photos and diagrams, which may be included in the finished book, may not be included in this format. Uncorrected proofs are primarily useful so that you, the reader, might know months before actual publication what the author and publisher are offering. If you plan to quote the text in your review, you must check it with the publicist or against the final version. Please contact reviews@rowman.com with any questions. Thank you!

This title views best in tablet-style eReaders.
This is a set of uncorrected page proofs. It is not a finished book and is not expected to look like one. Errors in spelling, page length, format and...


Available Editions

EDITION Hardcover
ISBN 9781538184059
PRICE $32.00 (USD)
PAGES 240

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