If Pro Street icon Annette Summer's last five weeks could have been any more of a whirlwind, it would have been an F5 tornado. 

Summer, the first lady of Pro Street racing back in the 1990s, in a span of five weeks has resurrected her old "pink" Camaro and took delivery of a drag racing relic. 

Summer is racing Brian Havlik's Fastest Street Car Shootout at Tri-State Raceway in Earlville, Iowa. This is a reunion of sorts of the cars that raced in the early years of the NMCA.

Summer, who has since relocated to Hendersonville, NC., from Aiken, SC., headed down the mountain to Tommy Mauney's shop for a few safety items in the bid to bring her classic Chevrolet up to code, a piece of drag racing history reached out and slapped her in the face. 

"We're going over what my car would need to get an SFI cert, when I turn around and there's a picture of Tommy's famous Pro Modified car Barney," Summer said of the car that won the 1995 IHRA Pro Modified championship and broke up Scotty Cannon's consecutive streak. 

"Tommy drove it. Shannon drove it. I'm like, 'Man, I love that car." 

The famous 1941 Willys, which some Pro Modified enthusiasts consider to be one of the doorslammer wonders of the world, held a special place in her heart. 

Summer was so touched by the car, she took one of her son's electric cars he'd outgrown, painted it like Mauney's Willys and then gave it to the chassis builder's son as a present. Mauney still has the present that Summer delivered while driving her 1985 Dodge Caravan. 

Then Summer said the magic words, "Man, I'd love to have that car."



Mauney walked into his office, flipped his Rolodex, grabbed a Post-it note, and started writing. He then walked out into the shop, handed the piece of paper to Summer, and instructed her, "When you leave here, you need to call this man." 

Summer was on the phone with Milton Ledford an hour later and made a deal to get "Barney."

"I did, and he gave me a price. I said, 'Okay, consider it sold," Summer said. "He said, 'Well, I got a truck too. You want that, too?" 

"I said, "Sold. I'll take it."

And just like that, Summer had a deal to purchase the car and every historic item associated with it. 

Before she could get in her vehicle to pick it up, two wealthy team owners from the Middle East heard about the car and tried to buy it from under her. 

Summer caught wind of the shenanigans and immediately told Ledford she couldn't compete with those offers. 

"He told me, 'Annette, this car is yours. It's going to the right place. My wife has prayed over finding somebody just like you that's going to do the right thing with this car," Summer explained. 

Summer not only got the car but the golf cart used to pull it during Mauney's championship. 

Ledford's intuitions were correct, as Summer plans to campaign for it at Cory Evenson's Legends of Pro Modified Series events. The car will be painted like the original Barney, with Tommy Mauney's name on the driver's side door, and Shannon Jenkins' on the passenger-side door. Above the driver's side door will simply be, "PINK."

These projects put Summer's return to drag racing back in full motion. 

"I had some health scares that are not talked about that was really bad, and it went from one location in my body to another," Summer said. "Got that taken care of. And I was running a business and trying to stay ahead of the game, dealing with parents that were declining in health. I let my own health go again. 

"And then in 2019, our water system where I live, downtown Aiken, is 93 years old and dilapidated. And I got a hold of a parasite in my body that almost took me out. I had the worst kind of parasites you could get. Doctors couldn't figure out what was wrong with me. It took four years to figure it out."



Summer finally got her health on the mend, but only after a taxing recovery period. All healed up, Summer will drive again and is committed to helping Everson with his new show. 

"It's all about preserving the history and these drivers being able to sit down, tell their stories, sign T-shirts, sign autographs," Summer said. "I spent my retirement to do this. Money I had saved for my retirement, I spent it all to do this because I am a firm believer in what he's trying to do.

"We're not promised tomorrow. These drivers can come back and they can get in their cars, the ones that are still living and able to do it.
Oh, that's just killer. I'm just excited; we are shifting our gears and doing it just like we used to."

When she was driving back in the day, it was a whirlwind of action—not much different from an F5 tornado.