Washington native Jody Lang is well known for his successes in Stock and Super Stock out on the West Coast. You can mostly find him in his Wagon in Stock Eliminator or his Malibu in Super Stock.
Like anyone else, Lang was introduced to the sport from his enjoyment of working on cars and living close to Seattle International Raceway. He first started racing in 1985 in a local bracket program. Once he started, he was hooked on the competition aspect of it.
Jody normally races no box bracket racing, Stock, and Super Stock. Pacific Raceways is his home track and he typically races at Division 6 and & racetracks. He sat in the stands at Seattle International Raceway for the first five years after the National came back in 1988 before he decided that he needed some type of car to be able to race at the National event, hence how he got into class racing.
“I like that there is a decent set of rules in place along with the challenge of making the car go faster,” Lang stated. “The fast cars are way too fast in each class to have a 7-second car in Super Stock and an 8-second car in Stock is just way too fast as there can be close to 100 MPH difference between cars racing on the track together.”
In both Stock and Super Stock, Lang is typically always the slower car making him leave the starting line first. The Wagon can go in the high 11-seconds in the 1/4-mile and the Super Stocker can run in the high 10’s. To him, he believes he has the advantage at the starting line being the slower car, but it can sometimes be a disadvantage at the finish line.
“I try not to change anything,” Lang said. “There have been a few slower guys that are successful, but it seems most go with the faster cars as they progress through their career. I’ve had some success with being the slower car so I will stick with it.”
Lang is considered one of the most decorated Stock racers in the country with one of the most unconventional cars. He’s been able to stay very competitive, no matter who he lines up against. With years of experience and his desire to not suck, he’s a perennial top 10 finisher in both cars.
“I can’t say that I hate to see anyone in the other lane specifically but if I had to choose I would say probably the guy that is close but can’t run under his index,” Lang stated.
The travel to and from races is what Lang considers the hardest part of drag racing, considering he’s not very centrally located. The closet track to him is 20 minutes away and his longest tow is to Phoenix, which is about 30 hours.
“Nothing is worse than the long drive after a tough loss where you have hours to think about everything you did wrong,” Lang laughed.
Lang is a multi-time division champion in Stock, Super Stock, and bracket racing also. He’s doubled with his class cars at both division and national events. Jody’s most memorable win was in 1998 at a Chevy race where he won in three different classes.
Lang’s favorite car is a coin flip between all three of them for various reasons. His 69 Chevelle bracket car was his first real race car, but he also likes his wagon because he feels like himself being in it. He also likes his Super Stocker because it’s a bit faster and leaves off a transbrake.
“This has been a trying year so far and it’s been a longer time since I last raced at the National Event in Phoenix than the regular off season,” Lang exclaimed. “I just hope to keep enjoying going to the races.”
Lang enjoys the competition and hanging with good people the most at the racetrack. The competition motivates him to continue racing, and he always looks forward to cracking an ice-cold beer at the end of the race day with his friends.
“I would like to be able to go to Indy sometime and to race at the All Stars again,” Lang said. “It’s just too far and too much time away from work for me to attend.”
Lang’s parents, even though they have been gone for a while, have made the biggest impact on his racing success. They were his biggest fans. His girlfriend, Martha, has made an impact too and makes sure he has everything he needs to be the best he can be.
He also has support from Hoosier Tire, Truck Town in Bremerton, WA, and DG Machine in Auburn, WA.
“If you’re thinking of class racing or bracket racing a slower car, give it a try and see if you like it,” Lang stated. “I feel it’s better to start out slower anyway to get comfortable with how to race.”
About the author: Megan Strassweg is a 22 year old Super Comp racer from Louisville, Kentucky. She races a 2015 American Dragster sponsored by Coolshirt Systems. She graduated from Western Kentucky University in May of 2020 with a degree in Photojournalism and a minor in Entrepreneurship. Megan works at Jim Butner Auto in the Finance Department. Growing up at the racetrack, drag racing is all she has known and never plans to give up on it.