NASCAR nookie?

A new romance series to fulfill all your hard-driving fantasies.

Published February 2, 2006 3:35PM (EST)

Ladies, start your engines!

Thanks to Gawker for drawing our attention to the new and unlikely romance between Harlequin novels (you know you love those Fabio covers!) and NASCAR, red-state-America's favorite sport.

The two groups have apparently teamed up to launch a "racy" series of paperbacks for all the women (and men?) out there with fetishes for canvas jumpsuits and checkered flags.

And if the advance press release is any indication, no bad pun or conventional plotline will go unused. Here's a glimpse of what you can expect from the first novel in the series, "In the Groove" by Pamela Britton, a "racetrack romance" that goes on sale "just a few weeks before the Daytona 500":

"In the Groove features down-on-his-luck NASCAR driver Lance Cooper and ex-kindergarten teacher Sarah Tingle. They meet when his car hits her. She gets a bump on the head. He's driven to distraction. When he looks at Sarah, Cooper "feels like he has been shocked by a loose spark plug wire."

How sweet, how saucy, how all-American. Is it safe to assume she gives him a "tuneup" next?

By Sarah Karnasiewicz

Sarah Karnasiewicz is a freelance writer and photographer based in Brooklyn, N.Y. Until recently, she was senior editor at Saveur magazine; prior to that she was deputy Life editor at Salon. She has contributed to the New York Times, the New York Observer and Rolling Stone, among other publications. For more of her work, visit and Signs and Wonders.

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