Street Racing Kills, but TV (and Youtube Videos) Glorify It

Jim Motavalli

Jim Motavalli | Mar 10, 2015

“Your brain just explodes on dopamine.” That’s an idiot street racer justifying why he feels the need to drive his hopped-up Fast-and-Furious car at breakneck speeds right through congested urban cores. Just like they do in the movie.


The aftermath of a Long Island street racing accident that killed five.
The aftermath of a Long Island street racing accident that killed five.

I’m getting sick of this. And these racers’ “adventures” are glorified not only at the movies, but both on legit television and on a huge number of handmade Youtube videos. Consider the case of Izzy Valenzuela. This Los Angeles miscreant was racing another guy, Michael Gevorgyan, when the latter lost control and crashed into a crowd, killing two and injuring one. Valenzuela, now charged with two counts of murder, had recently been seen on the Discovery channel show “Street Outlaws.”

In the video above, it's street racers against the cops. On real streets, in real time.

Seventeen-year-old Tristan Reichle, 18-year-old Jesse Romero, 14-year-old Carly Lonnborg, 15-year-old Noah Francis and 17-year-old Cody Talanian. All five are dead in Farmingdale, Long Island after a 2014 racing-related accident. Two innocent adults were severely injured, too. And survivor Cory Gloe, 18, was recently indicted on five counts of second-degree manslaughter in the case for being one of the drivers.

Let’s remember Krystal Pomante of Portland, Oregon, who’d be in her early 20s now, but is instead more than a decade dead because of an impromptu street race. Her sister’s boyfriend, who was driving, accepted a “challenge” from another driver, and off they went into oblivion. That incident was supposed to have been an inspiration for a nationwide “crackdown” on illegal street racing, but nothing really happened.

The Internet is littered with videos, internationally sourced. Street racing is popular in the U.S., but also in Russia, Japan and in England, too. One I watched showed a Russian guy with his girlfriend on a wild ride over a couple of highways; he's almost gleeful as he's caught and hauled away. I’ve put a few of the videos here, some of which show racers trying to elude the police, and you get the idea it’s entertainment—both a how-to and something to do if you’ve already seen the Fast and Furious 100 times. This 1,000-horsepower Nissan is hitting 147 mph as he eludes the authorities:

And here's a compilation of Japanese street racers, having the time of their lives:

But don’t worry, Fast and Furious 7 with Paul Walker and Vin Diesel is sure to get you all hopped up again. As long as movies like this keep coming out, and Youtube keeps hosting an untold number of street racing videos, don’t expect anything to change. The carnage on the streets will continue.

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