For local family, drag racing is a win-win

(ROCKWALL, TX — Dec. 14, 2016) One would be hard-pressed to find a group of individuals in the community more involved in drag racing than the Russells. The local family absolutely, positively lives for the sport.

“Everything we do involves racing,” said Curtis Russell, father of two junior drag racers Carson (13) and Collin (8), and crew chief of the family racing team known as CMR Boys Racing sponsored by Viperizer Racing based in Pennsylvania.

Their love for the sport, however, goes beyond winning races and collecting trophies, as one can tell from the emblems found on both Carson’s and Collin’s dragsters. One such emblem remembers Henry Canales, a Houston police officer who was killed in the line of duty in 2009. Canales was a member of Beat The Heat, a national non-profit organization comprised of police officers and firefighters who conduct educational programs using marked emergency vehicle drag cars to gain the interest of the public. Curtis, a Garland police officer, and his family back the blue as members of Beat The Heat along with Canales’s son, Henry Canales, Jr., who is also a Jr. Dragster driver.

The boys also race for Brad Gordon, a member of the non-denominational ministry to the world of motorsports known as Racers for Christ, and for Roger “Pops” Tarvin, a beloved member of the Jr. Drag Racing community who passed away earlier this year.

“We race for him because we miss him,” Curtis said. “He was always there and treated all kids of the racing community like they were his grandkids.”

Carson and Collin with friends Brody Tigue (pictured left) and Brigg Ray as they prep for a race at the Texas Motorplex in Ennis, TX. Photo courtesy Kim Russell.

Carson began his racing career at age 8 in 2011. In just his fifth year racing, he has earned himself a vast collection of trophies as a junior drag racer including the NHRA’s (National Hot Rod Association) prestigious “Wally” trophy and the IHRA’s (International Hot Rod Association) “Ironman” trophy. Collin, in his second year, seems to be following in his brother’s footsteps with his own impressive assemblage of trophies and began his racing career in the 2015 season.

Carson (pictured above) and Collin (below) show off some of their trophies.

In early October, the boys were pitted against each other in the finals at the Paris Dragstrip. Collin came out on top over his big brother, running a 12.38 on a 12.37 dial. Carson broke out running a 9.02 on a 9.05 dial.

Carson said his fastest time on the track was 8.26 seconds in an eighth mile at 79 miles per hour; Collin’s was 52 miles per hour at around 12.20 seconds. The boys race the same model car –  a Motivational Tubing Pinnacle Top Fuel Jr. Dragster.

According to Curtis, the cars are completely safe – probably more so than a regular car.

“My stepdaughter rolled this car and was able to walk away from it going about 50 miles per hour. These cars are very safe because of the racing harness and the neck brace which keeps their heads from moving around. They’re a lot safer in here than they probably are in a regular car, because they’re designed to take about a 180 mile-an-hour impact,” Curtis said.

Curtis, Carson and Collin also partake in slot car racing with 1:24 scale model cars, which they race on a track in Garland called Dallas Slot Cars. Pictured from the left are Curtis, Carson and Collin with their slot car collection and trophies earned in slot car racing competition.

For Carson, performance on the track comes second to the comradery which comes with being a part of the drag racing community. “It’s fun to get to go to the race track, meet new people and be with family,” Carson said.

Younger brother Collin agreed. “The best part about drag racing is getting to be with your friends.”

Curtis said while the competition remains fierce out on the track, it’s all about family and friendship once the race is over.

“It’s tough-fought on the track, and in the staging lanes you’re all competitors. But then when you get back to the pits, everybody’s family,” he said.

Check out photos and video of Carson’s and Collin’s accomplishments on the track at

Story and photos by Austin Wells, Blue Ribbon News. 


Our print edition is delivered free to 18,000+ homes in Rockwall and Heath, TX.

To share your good news and events, email .

For advertising inquiries both online and in print, call 214-342-8000 or email .


Download the FREE Official Rockwall Area App for Apple iPhone or Android.