It's not a drag to race your brother
IT IS often said that the family that plays together, stays together.
This is certainly an adage the Oberg family has taken to heart with mum and dad overseeing their sons competing in the sport of drag racing.
Caleb, 14, and Ethan, 10, have each been racing in the junior dragster bracket since the age of eight and will be part of the action at Warwick Dragway on February 9 when it hosts the opening round of the 2013 JP Racing Eighth Mile Drag Racing Series.
While the family attributes the sport to strengthening their relationship, sibling rivalry does at times come into play.
"I hate racing my little brother - I don't like beating him, but at the same time I don't want to get beaten by him because then he and all my friends tease me about it," Caleb said.
In 2010, Caleb became the youngest ever Australian drag racing champion when he took out the junior dragster national title.
"Racing against him is nerve-racking and a bit weird - I like to win, but I don't like winning at his expense, and I know he gets nervous racing against me," he said.
"At our last race meeting, he was doing really great with his reaction times and everything but when he had to race me he red-lit (jumped the start) so I won, and I think if he hadn't been so nervous he wouldn't have done that and he would have beaten me because I wasn't doing so good.
"While it can be strange when we race each other, most of the time we just want to do well as a family and I try and help him out as much as I can. We are both really looking forward to the Eighth Mile series this year as we are doing the full series at all four tracks which is going to be exciting."
Ethan Oberg has fond memories of Warwick Dragway as the venue of his first victory when he won no less than three trophies at the 2012 Junior Dragfest event (C/JD Top Qualifier, C/JD Bracket Winner and All-in Bracket Winner).
"I love Warwick Dragway. I have won all my trophies there and the Eighth Mile series is a lot of fun. I love getting to race three times, as it isn't much fun sitting on the side watching everyone else if you are knocked out at the beginning," Ethan said.
"I do get nervous racing Caleb, he has been racing a lot longer than me, but I am trying to get better and hopefully I can beat him some more this year."
Father, Rod Oberg is clearly proud of the efforts of his sons who are sponsored by Queensland Nameplate Group.
"They love going and racing together at the track. Overall there isn't a great deal of real rivalry between them, just a bit of banter in good fun," Rod said.
"With two boys racing in the same bracket it can be a handful sometimes running both cars, especially when things go wrong, but most of the time things run fairly smoothly. My wife Kathy starts and runs Ethan's car at the track while I look after Caleb's, so we have a bit of a Team Caleb and Team Ethan thing going which adds a little bit of extra fun.
"I think racing together makes us a much stronger family unit which enjoys each other company."
Qualifying starts at 2.30pm on February 9 with racing from 7pm.
More than 100 nominations are expected in six classes, including a number of Warwick drivers.