WEST FARGO-Kelly Jacobson has some pretty harsh critics giving their opinions about the way he races.
His father, Scott Jacobson, who's in his 24th year of auto racing, and Scott's uncle, Joe, who began racing in the 1960s before he bowed out of the sport, seemingly find every mistake he makes.
"My old man is always on me," Kelly said. "As much as he points out what I'm doing right, he's definitely on me for what I'm doing wrong. They get on me. They're pretty critical, but I know they're just pushing for me to get better."
Some families prefer the peacefulness of fishing or the adventure of hunting.
For the Jacobsons of Fargo, they prefer the adrenaline rush of auto racing.
Scott and Kelly are near the top of the IMCA Sport Mods points standings at the Red River Valley Speedway where Joe raced for nearly half a decade. Scott's daughter, Andrea, races go-karts and his younger son, Nicholas, hopes to do the same soon. The speedway has races scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday, July 22.
"They're all little motorheads," Scott said. "It's a family affair. It's what they do. It's an escape from life and everything else."
Scott stepped back from racing when the Red River Valley Speedway closed down and focused on giving advice to Kelly, who races at three tracks almost every available night.
When he heard the Speedway was going to be in full operation again this summer, he scrambled to get an engine together and is now in his 24th year of racing.
"I grew up watching those guys race," Kelly said of Scott and Joe. "(The Red River Valley Speedway) was the one track I went to every week with my dad. It was almost heartbreaking to see them close it. It was a second home to you. It was awesome to see it open back up."
Joe began racing in 1966, and hung it up three years ago.
Kelly is in his sixth year.
"I've been going to the West Fargo track since I've been old enough to walk," he said. "Watching my uncle and dad race there back in the early '90s when I was four or five years old, I never missed a race."
Seventy-three-year-old Joe still goes to races to help out Scott and Kelly.
Well, as much as he can.
"I'm talking to a wall when I'm talking to him," Joe said of Kelly. "He's probably giving me advice. These cars are way different than what I used to run. They were fast, but not like nowadays. They get new engines and everything."
Joe said racing helps Scott and Kelly by keeping them busy. While many racers simply park their cars in garages until the next races roll around, that's not how the Jacobsons operate. Scott and Kelly are usually working on their cars whenever Joe visits.
"If you've got racing all the time, you don't have time to be racing like a madman out in the streets," Joe said. "I get pretty close with (Scott) that way. ... When he grew up, he was always at the racetrack. He wanted to be a race car driver, and he turned out to be pretty good."
Scott began racing at 16 - his first race was in West Fargo - and always strived to be as successful as his uncle, who Scott said has a room full of trophies in his basement dating back to 1966.
"I always idolized uncle Joe," Scott said. "That's where you set the standard because he was always the winner. He always won. When he didn't, it was no big deal, but he always won."
Scott not only wanted to carry on with his uncle's racing success, he also wanted to carry on with the same attitude of being a role model for Kelly.
Scott usually points out Kelly's flaws, even after a good race.
That's the way Joe treated Scott.
While it's been a struggle teaching Kelly the finer points of racing - "he thinks he knows everything" - Scott believes Kelly will get better.
"He's a fine racer. He's going to be really good one day. Right now, he's good," Joe said. "A couple years already he was winning a lot of features. ... That's all right for a guy just starting. Some guys don't ever win a feature. If you win one, you have to think that might be your last one."
Scott said he sometimes gets emotional watching Kelly race.
"Not that I get a tear in my eye, but it gives a good feeling," he said. "It's my son. My son is getting better with every lap that he's run."
Like Scott, Joe said he doesn't usually show a lot of emotion, but seeing his family race is still exciting.
Especially on a course he began racing on in 1969.
"I do enjoy going to the races and them winning it," Joe said.
So even if Scott keeps his rivalry alive and well with his own son, he knows it's only pushing Kelly to become even better than what he already is.
"I push him like you do with kids," Scott said. "You always push your kids to do better and better, but once your kid starts to do better than you do, and I'm not saying I'm great, but it's a pretty good feeling. It's a pretty high moment."