Jarvis was born to race

Published 1:06 pm Monday, February 6, 2023

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By Elisabeth Altamirano-Smith |Community columnist

Some people love racing and speedways while others live for it. Katie Jarvis, age 20 of Jemison, is a dirt track racing driver and enthusiast. Her father Jerry Jarvis began racing decades ago and gave Katie her interest in the sport. Katie uses her platform as a local race car driver to inspire and encourage children that they can accomplish whatever their dreams is.

“I grew up going to the races to watch my daddy,” Katie Jarvis said. “I would stand at the fence and watch him go by. When I was two and old enough to talk, I told people that one day I would race and wanted my own car.”

In her teen years, she saved her income from her first job to purchase her dream race car “Fancy”, a 1985 Monte Carlo. She chose a Monte Carlo as her race car because it has more springs to modify when driving and making turns. Her top speed while dirt track racing ranges around 70 mph.

While a few other female drivers from other counties occasionally come to race, Katie Jarvis is the only female driver in her class, Factory-Stock V8. She enjoys participating in a mostly male-dominated sport and letting young girls know that the sport is something they can achieve.

“I love seeing little kids line up idolizing me and watching my car because I was that kid at one time,” she said. “I used to stand where they are standing wishing I could race and now I get to compete.”

Some of her driver-idols are Heather Lowe and Victoria Anderson which have inspired and encouraged her as a female to race.

“Whatever your dream is, you can do it,” Katie Jarvis said. “Some people will tell you that you can’t. They will give you doubt and try to intimidate you — prove them wrong! I am thankful for all of the people that have encouraged and continue to support my dream.”

Jarvis’ car “Fancy” won second place (out of thousands of entries) in the 2021 Speedway Motors Cover Contest. Her goal for the future is to race at Street Stock Nationals in Mississippi.

When Jarvis is not racing, she enjoys spending time with her sister, Lacie. She works at Racing USA in Alabaster. Her parents are Jerry and Angie Jarvis.

She is looking forward to attending Jefferson State Community College Nursing Program on full scholarship as the winning recipient of an essay contest.