'When I took over I was hooked'
By By Matthew Nascone
Brandon Snider is a huge racing enthusiast and he has said racing is a huge part of his life, but that racing is not the only thing that gets his blood rushing.
"I first started helping out (coaching softball) about four years ago and when I took over as manager this year I got hooked," he said. "Being able to help more than just my daughter is a challenge to me and it is a great feeling to help them."
Snider's 9-year-old daughter Peyton is part of the team he manages, the Angela &Co. Nailers of the Atmore Babe Ruth Fast Pitch Softball League 6-9 year olds division.
Before he started coaching softball his No. 1 desire was drag racing.
"That adrenaline rush of going from a dead stop to the end of a one-eighth-mile track in four seconds is huge," Snider said.
He said he started out in bracket racing at the Atmore Dragway and he is now in the Pro-modified class of racing. He has traveled to various cities in Alabama and Florida for races. He calls Emerald Coast Dragway in Holt, Fla. his home track now.
If it involves some sort of vehicle and a dirt track Snider will be there. He races not only drag cars, but also dirt bikes and stock cars.
Snider said the desire to coach softball was never in his mind until Peyton wanted to play the sport.
"I was a football player in high school and I did not care about baseball or softball, but when Peyton wanted to play I became interested," he said. "Any kind of sports she wants to be involved with I will be there full speed behind her."
Snider was a four-year starter on the Escambia County High School football team and graduated in 1993.
He went directly into the Army National Guard out of high school and served the United States until 1999. He was born and raised in Atmore and he was at boot camp at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland where he received AIT training.
When he returned from boot camp he went to work for Coley's Air Conditioning in 1994 and worked there for 10 years until 2003. He also took care of the air conditioning units for the Escambia County School Board for three years and then a dream came true for Snider.
"Owning my own business has been a goal of mine for years," he said.
Snider attained his goal about one month ago when he opened A.C. Man Heating and Air Conditioning.
On the field Snider said he believes in self-discipline and teamwork.
"I stay on the girls all the time about staying positive about their performance," he said. "I will tell them to keep going if they had a bad game because they will do better next time. And I always make sure they know that we are a team and we win and lose as a team. It is not any one person's fault."
Snider said he began coaching to teach his own daughter how to play the game, but he now has to worry about more than that.
"I wanted to coach to help my own daughter, but now I have 14 other girls that I am helping and it is great," Snider said. "And the parents are great to me and they all have told me how much they appreciate what I have done and that makes me feel good."