NHRA Funny Car racer Alexis DeJoria was one of three inductees enshrined into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame recently in Rosemont, Ill.
DeJoria, a seven-time NHRA national event winner, joined an elite group of Italian-American athletes when she is recognized as a member of The Hall’s Class of 2019. Joining DeJoria were NFL star Glen Carano and the late Ralph ‘Babe’ Serpico. DeJoria also shared the stage with auto racing legend Mario Andretti as he was presented with The Hall’s first Lifetime Achievement Award.
“This is an incredible honor to be recognized as an Italian-American athlete in the sport of NHRA Drag Racing,” said DeJoria, whose heritage includes Italian and Greek roots. “When I learned I had been selected, I felt instant pride thinking back to when my grandfather immigrated here from Italy to become part of the American dream.”
DeJoria is regarded as one of the most accomplished and influential female athletes in motorsports. Her legacy includes breaking barriers in a male-dominated industry and racking up a stunning list of achievements both on and off the racetrack.
DeJoria began her racing career in 2005 by competing in the Super Gas category before moving into a rear engine Super Comp dragster. Within eight months of her debut, DeJoria had won a national event and collected two runner-up finishes. She continued to work her way through the NHRA Sportsman classes and in 2007, moved into the Top Alcohol Funny Car category where she owned and operated her own team, Stealth Motorsports, from 2009 to 2011 and is one of the few females ever to do so.