Angie Coots, being different isn’t always a bad thing.
Being different isn’t always a bad thing, especially when you are a young girl who has an interest in cars. How do you communicate this to other girls when they have their visions of toys, and later in life, boys! All you want is to learn more about cars, but yet no one is willing to teach you because you are a girl, and most girls have no interest in getting their hands greasy.
Not true for Angie Coots, 35, from Harlan, Kentucky. At a very young age she would dream about cars, wanting to know more about what makes them tick. She could never find anyone in her circle of friends who had the same interests until she was in her twenties, when she met her husband. It wasn’t until then that she actually began learning and watching her husband and his friends working on their cars.
After waiting some 20 plus years to learn about cars, Angie became more eager to work on her own car. She decided in 2006 to sell her Ford Taurus and buy a 2001 Ford Mustang GT. For fun, she decided to take the Mustang to the track, just goofing around, just to see what it could do. She was mainly doing practice runs, which also gave her the opportunity to get the feel of a track experience. This was the beginning of a long awaited love.
Wanting to see what more she could do to the Mustang, Angie would save up for cars parts, install them herself, then head off to the track to see how much horsepower the Mustang gained. Seeing how much faster the car would go with the changes became a challenge. After seeing the differences, Angie actually became giddy over what she was accomplishing.
Angie’s interest was more than a hobby, it became a labor of love. So much so that it bothered her not knowing what the guys were talking about when it came to cars and parts. She wanted to dig in and learn because something seemed missing. This was really exciting for Angie. She began to ask questions while her husband and friends would perform repairs or modifications, but she didn’t know the entire mechanic’s lingo. At this point, she found some college level mechanical repair books at a garage sale and began teaching herself.
It didn’t take long for her to burn up Google, researching everything she could on every detail on anything she could read about cars, repairs and parts. Her passion and strong will to fulfill her dream in becoming knowledgeable on turning wrenches was in full swing and on the right track.
It wasn’t long before Angie would begin asking her husband if she could work on his car in order to gain some experience, and before she knew it, friends would begin asking her questions about their car troubles.
Angie knew it was time to really get her hands dirty and that it was time to build her own car from scratch. This might seem out of reach and to some, more than one could handle with such little knowledge, but not for Angie. She was ready to dive in.
Looking for a body to start with, Angie found a 1986 Chevy Camaro for $500.00; no transmission, or motor, just bare bones car. She built a 406 cubic inch small block engine backed by a 350 turbo transmission, built the way she wanted it, and the engine was also powered by a 250 shot NOS (Nitrous Oxide) system. Angie states that it may have not been the best build, but for her first attempt, what an accomplishment.
Angie was not quite on the right road for what was to come for her in the future. She headed down to the local track to try out her build and to see just what this baby could do on the 1/8 mile. Amazingly, the car ran 7.5 in the 1/8 mile and Angie now knew that there was a lot of room for improvement. You have to admit, for a woman to go from knowing absolutely nothing about cars to building her own Nitrous shot car is something to brag about. But as a mother of a 4 year old, having a race car as your everyday driving vehicle probably isn’t practical; especially when you strap your child’s car seat next to a Nitrous bottle between her and you, (plus trying to hear what she is saying over the loud exhaust needed some evaluating.)
Angie traded in her race car for a more family friendly vehicle, a 2005 Ford Mustang GT. Although it’s not race ready YET, she does have plans for it in the future. Angie is also considering up-cycling car parts – currently she is working on a cam shaft lamp. You just might see her products on the market for sale one day.
You can also find Angie Coots featured in the CarChix 2016 Calendar in June. Nothing is beyond reach if you just keep your vision and dreams alive. http://carchix.com/wp/car-chix-2016-women-of-motorsports-calendars/