The weather was hot but the new track was fun at the Alfa/FCA track event in Las Vegas on June 10th and 11th. The track is now 1.75 miles long with 9 turns and 2 straights, similar to Willow Springs but much flatter, tighter and slower. It is a challenging track with a couple combination turns with decreasing radii that really test a driver's ability.
The best news is that participation from the Club is up, and we're starting to see members like Joel Quaid get the racing bug and move up from the Intro group to the Time Trials. Below is a list of members who made the trek to Sin City:
|Marshall Buck||LA Area||Corvette|
|Jeff Littrell||LA Area||Mazda RX-7|
|Neil Miller||LA Area||Mondial t s/n 82553|
|Paul Porteous||Port Hueneme, CA||BMW M3|
|Joel Quaid||Santa Barbara, CA||348 ts s/n 89754|
|Tim Strombo||Missoula, Montana||308 GTSi s/n 41085|
|Arthur Trejo||LA Area||308 GTS QV s/n 50701|
|Drew Kelley||LA Area||330 GTC s/n 9911|
|Marv Landon||LA Area Southwest Boeing 727|
Paul Porteous relaxes between sessions.
Another member who really made an extra effort was our illustrious competition chairman, Marv Landon. Marv couldn't participate in this event because he had to attend a wedding on Saturday but he still went through the expense and effort to fly out Sunday, rent a car, and drive to the track just to make sure all us FCA guys weren't giving the Club a bad name. Drew Kelley must get some mention also for taking his own special, 14 hour route in his 330 GTC from Downey to Las Vegas just to watch the rest of us drive around the track. Think about that next time you look at your Ferrari languishing in the garage.
Although you can't tell, Joel Quaid is smiling ear-to-ear behind that helmet as he comes in from a some hot laps.
But my favorite member of the weekend was Joel Quaid. Joel has a beautiful blue 348 ts that he bought to drive on the street. But as happens to so many of us, he came out to Willow a while back, participated in the Intro group, and got the racing bug. He has subsequently installed a 5-point harness and fire extinguisher in his gorgeous cream colored interior and dramatically improved his driving skills by working with instructor Brad Gray. In Las Vegas he had the foresight to sign up for the novice time trial group and therefore got more track time than anyone else. He got to follow the instructor's car around the track to learn the racing line and also got classroom instruction on time trial techniques. As a result he had a lot of fun and greatly reduced his track times. His Ferrari is no worse for wear either.
Joel Quaid's 348 chases Niel Miller's Mondial through turn 3 at Las Vegas Speedway Park.
Member and perennial track hound Marshal Buck out classed the field in his Corvette to win the race on Sunday while the rest of us worked on our time trials.<