Penske Party

By: Tino Mingori

There was stop and go traffic, there were accidents, there were traffic bulletins, there were helicopters overhead, there were a zillion commuters fighting to get home. Yet in spite of all these normal Tuesday evening hazards on the Los Angeles Freeways, more than a hundred loyal FCA members made their way to the impressive Penske Racing Museum hidden beneath Longo Toyota in El Monte. It reminded one of the old days at the El Monte Legion Stadium: Be there or be square! What a magnificent display of people, racing cars and memorabilia.

Upon arrival, we were guided to secure underground parking, with a special zone set aside for those members foolhardy enough to subject their Ferraris to the rush hour rigors of the freeways. Congratulations to those of you in this select group. I was unable to detect any dents or damage which may have resulted from an encounter with a gardener's truck, a mattress on the road, or a ladder in the fast lane. In an area just outside the museum we were invited to graze over a delicious Italian Smorgasbord consisting of salad, pasta (of course), fruit, cheeses, breads, beverages, etc. which were served in generous portions. Furthermore, you could go back as often as you wanted for more.

I can't recall how many times our hard working President Judd Goldfeder was seen loading up.

What a great chance to see friends and catch up on what's new (and old) in the motor world. Greg Penske was there to provide his personal welcome and relate a few experiences about growing up in the Penske world of racing and automobiles. Starting from the very bottom with a push broom in his hand, he worked his way up through various jobs in the organization to the position of President of the Penske Automotive Group, Inc.

Greg is a gracious and friendly host, and I very much enjoyed talking with him. Thank you Greg for a delightful meeting venue and the opportunity for a close up look at some spectacular racing cars. Your offer to come back sometime and take one of those gorgeous yellow machines for a few hot laps was very generous.

A bunch of thanks also goes to Scott St. Peter - race car museum, Bernie King - restorations, and, most importantly, Suzanne Castaneda - executive secretary in charge of everything and without whose help it would not have happened. A hearty thank you from the entire membership

By the way, about that word meeting. The little secret of the FCA Southwest Region is out. These "meetings" which occur from time to time are not really meetings at all. They are in fact parties. Absolutely no meaningful business whatsoever is conducted at one of these events. So for a good time, be sure to come to the Boyd Coddington "meeting " (heh heh) in January.