Shopping at Sears
Can you believe it?!? For the first time since last September, or maybe it was August, it didn't rain at a Glen Region event. Instead, Sunday, May 16 turned out to be a gorgeous, partly cloudy, but sufficiently sunny day. A day one was glad to be an autocrosser instead of wondering about the cost of a set of rain tires. It was sufficiently appealing to attract 40 of us to the Arnot Mall just to the southeast of Sears for our annual pave-the-Sears-lot-with-rubber challenge. And pave the lot we did. The course design committee, forgoing the usual #2 at the local fast food franchises, dedicated their early Sunday morning to creating a very serviceable, counterclock, kidney shaped layout. The coutnerclock layout must be a NASCAR influence, but whatever it was, the course was fun to drive, if a bit rough on the pylons of the world. So much for that new wienie award, the Kone Kindess Kup or whatever they call it (PC has gone much too far in this humble writer's opinion; Okay, skip the humble part). Cones were being booted, shoved, dragged farther than some of my previous cars could run without having to stop for repairs, and in all ways imaginable, tortured incessantly. What's more, I don't remember anyone saying, "Are you sure I hit that cone?" Most of us being surprised that we left any standing.
As is typical, the largest classes of the day in order were: G-Stock, Street Touring S, B-Stock, and Street Touring X. G-Stock was the primo class with 7 entrants, all pretty darn good wheel flingers. In the end, though, someone had to win and it was Brian Tyburski ('94 Ford Probe), who drove all the way from Boston to take the class honors. Great to have you back, Brian. Nile Heermans ('90 Nissan 240SX), excited at the prospect of driving on dry pavement for a change, managed a respectable second place, followed by Jeff Tyburski ('94 Ford Probe) in third place. Barry Butterfield ('03 Mini Cooper S) led a "Mini Brigade," but had to settle for fourth place ahead of Mark Roloson ('03 Mini Cooper S), Joe Pavlovich ('03 Mini Cooper S), and Jeremy Dawson ('01 VW Jetta).
Geoff Peterson ('00 VW GTi) returned to the home soil to reclaim first place honors in Street Touring S, but Todd Totman ('95 Plymouth Neon) running on two cylinders fewer than normal (That's not a metaphor, Casey) still managed to capture the silver giving away less than a full second's time. Barney may be bruised and battered but is still willing. Matt Lockhart ('03 Toyota Matrix XRS) trailed in third followed by Matt Latyszoneh ('98 Neon), Jeane Totman ('95 Plymouth Neon), and Erick Van Duyner ('91 Honda Accord).
I led off B-Stock with a decent first run, but wasn't able to improve on it, allowing the others to walk all over me. In the end, Nick Brewster ('01 Honda S2000) took class honors followed by yours truly, Phil Cornell ('95 BMW M3), and Eric Navestad ('00 Honda S2000). For those of you who weren't there or didn't notice, this was Eric's maiden voyage on R-compound tires. We could tell as Eric kept saying, "The car actually turns?!" Wait 'til the next event, Eric, if you think this one was fun.
Another newcomer to a Glen Region event, Kevin Roche ('02 Subaru Impreza), got the award for most exciting driver at the event. He took first place in Street Touring X with what had to be flattest turning Subaru I've ever seen. That exhaust note was pretty sweet, too. Kevin's time was good enough to earn him both the fastest time of the day (FTD) and the beloved PAX trophy at the same time. Behind Kevin ran Ken Pierce ('87 BMW 325is), Greg Pierce (ditto), and John Pierce (ditto, yet again), none of whom are exactly slouches behind the wheel (or so Becky tells me).
There were a few other multi-car classes that especially sunny, Sunday. Starting up in E-Stock, Tedd Hurd ('83 Mazda RX-7) continued his 2004 winning streak by claiming a victory over Rich Chernosky ('88 Toyota MR2) and novice David Miller ('84 Porsche 944), while the comeback kid, Mike Taves ('84 BMW 318i). won at his first Solo II appearance in over a year, by beating John Monk ('93 Eagle Talon) and Brandon Ragan ('95 Pontiac Firebird) down in H-Stock. In D-Street Prepared, George Dohanich ('94 Plymouth Neon) suffered "mechanical difficulties" which precluded his taking all of his entitled runs, but he was still able to get through the timing lights a little quicker than second place Ken Moyer ('97 Honda Prelude). Aaron Boltman ('02 Camaro SS) battled Jeff Eames ('99 Mustang Cobra) in a battle of the big block cone killers, making some of the greatest automotive sound effects, ever. Made it worth the watch! Finally, in Street Modified Dan Keen ('02 Chevrolet Camaro) held off Chris Keifer ('01 Subaru ) and Traian Stanev ('03 VW Jetta) for class honors. I've been watching Traian the past several races both in the Glen and in other regions, and I think he may be a force to reckon with in the not too distant future. Course, I suspect that Dan knows that, too.
All of the remaining drivers and their times can be seen on the Glen Region web site at: http://www.glen-scca.org/solo/2004/results20040516.asp. There are also some pretty good photos and video clips at that location for those of you who like to see that sort of thing. I know I do.
On behalf of the Glen Region, I want to thank the good folks at Arnot Mall for the loan of their parking lot and I want to give personal thanks to Pat Scopelliti, not only for excellent chairing, but for some good driving advice even if I wasn't able to follow it (I tried, Pat, honest I did). We old timers need all the help we can get and several of you were kind enough to try to help me. It's always appreciated, believe me. Our next event is a Solo II School scheduled for Saturday, June 19 at Ithaca College. Robby Craig, instructor extraordinaire, will be in charge. If you are interested in attending sign up NOW as there are only a limited number of openings. Sign up is on the web at http://www.glen-scca.org/solo/2004 On the very next day, Sunday May 16, and at the exact same location will be the next Solo II event. In the meantime, may all your apexes be good apexes. See you at Solo!