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Racing, religion go hand in hand

By Anthony Rhoads

In auto racing, sponsor decals are commonplace all the way from NASCAR Winston Cup to Bandolero racing.

Thursday Thunder Semi-Pro Division competitor Scott Hicks is no different as he also has a decal on the hood of his car.

But what makes his decal stand out is that it doesn't promote a business but it reads ?Racing for Jesus.'

For Hicks, racing and religion go hand in hand.

"I wouldn't be here without the Lord," he said. "I think just about every driver says a prayer before every race."

Hicks got his decals at the McDonough Road Baptist Church in Fayetteville, where his brother David Hicks attends. The church was doing a race-oriented theme and he was asked to bring his car to the church.

"They used the car as a promo and we put the decals on," Hick said. "After that, I thought I would leave them on. It's a good way to witness. It's been a lot of fun and several people have noticed the decals and have asked me about them."

Hicks attends the Eastside Baptist Church in Riverdale.

Hicks was raised in a church environment and as he was growing up in Hampton, he also developed a love for racing.

"I've been a racing fan and I've always been a big NASCAR fan," Hicks said. "It's something I've always wanted to do."

Hicks became interested in Legends racing after seeing an event at Senoia Speedway.

"We found out you could come here to Legends of Georgia and drive them," he said. "I drove one and decided I was going to get one."

Hicks began competing at Thursday Thunder last year in the Chargers Division and finished fifth in the final points standings.

This season in Semi-Pro, he's been competitive and last week he finished fifth and third in two races.

Hicks also races at Senoia Speedway. He enjoys racing at both venues but the tracks are very different.

"The difference in the racing is like night and day," he said.

"Senoia is a lot faster. The laps are faster even though the track is an eighth-of-a-mile longer (than Atlanta Motor Speedway's quarter-mile track)."

While many drivers at Thursday Thunder want to use the series as a stepping stone to race nationally, Hicks doesn't have those aspirations.

The Delta Airlines mechanic is just out there for the fun of it.

"If I was about 10 years younger and didn't have the responsibility I might go for it but I'm happy racing here and it's fun," Hicks said.

Hicks, 33, grew up in Hampton and is a 1987 Jonesboro High School graduate.