Tag Archives: cayman

Another Post Card from the Grand Prix of Monterey and the California 8 hour at Laguna Seca

I wanted to share a few pix from the actual flag points during the PWC and SRO weekend at Laguna Seca… so here it goes.

My goal was to work in pit lane for this event. I was introduced to someone who chiefs that specialty and that person never replied. So to not miss the event, I decided to volunteer as a flagger and instead of requesting a specific post to work (like I did in previous years, like Turn 8 Corkscrew or Turn 2 last year for this very event) I just asked to be put wherever they needed me. And lucky for me they needed me in some very cool place. I got to work for two days in the beginning at Turn 3 which was amazing… and for the last two days of racing at Turn 11 which took the cake!

1957 was an amazing year it turns out… Lime Rock was built in 1957 and are celebrating their 60th this year. So is Laguna Seca apparently, and even VIRginia International Raceway was built in ’57 except that track went on hiatus for a bunch of years recently.

View from Turn 3 towards Turn 2 above and Turn 4 below.

A super convenient station which allowed me to sneak out to do another paddock walk to take some pictures during lunch time on Thursday. My awesome coworker helped me out by grabbing lunch for me at the Social tent which was delicious… I wolfed it down before the practice resumed in the afternoon.

The only European team in attendance. Belgian WRT Audi which “almost” won this event if it didn’t take aggressive actions against another fast Audi that lead most of the race and spun out into the gravel going down several laps before it was pulled out.

Pretty car though…

The Audi R8 that lead most of the race… they also had their Daytona 24 hour IMSA car on display in the paddock. Lead most of the race but were overtaken by Magnus Racing Audi towards the end.

Winner winner, chicken dinner.

Mazda of course had a prominent display in the paddock including their Miata “halfie” street/race car. And the new RF fastback.

I did some shopping before coming to the track so I had plenty of snacks to much on during the weekend…

Oh look “CARS” stamped fishies…

It was cooler in the mornings but the temps went up during the day, and the sun was pretty brutal especially at Turn 11 where I was without any cover during race days.

San Francisco Region SCCA did a fantastic job as usual feeding us.

Though I didn’t win this t-shirt that I really wanted, my buddy Ron who did win for some crazy reason offered to me. I’m super grateful!

On Friday evening SRO had rolled out all it’s cars for a group photo…

A very small group of only 19 cars to race for the 8 hour endurance, most of which typically only race sprint 2 to 3 hour races with PWC. team WRT of course and MARC Cars Australia have more endurance racing experience with Spa 24 and Bathurst 12 hours under their respective belts (along with many others I’m sure).

Thank goodness I had a bunch of bandanas to cover up so I didn’t fry my face… on Sunday it turns out Fort Ord conducted a controlled burn which scared the crap out of a lot of fellow marshals. Especially people working pit lane when ash started raining down (near fuel rigs). Oops!

My buddy Adam who hosted me for the weekend and who also works for SCRAMP came to visit me at Turn 3 and Turn 11.

Monday morning it was a wrap… a wrap of my two week California getaway. Speaking of wraps, I love the cover Adam is using on his Miata, and should probably invest in one for my car. Fits like a glove.

We grabbed one final lunch at my favorite diner in Salinas that severs the freshest salad I’ve ever had: Elli’s (get it, like Ellis Island)

And I headed back to return my 2017 Hyunday Accent at Hertz Seaside before heading back to Monterey.

I’m used to seeing Canadian flags here in New York at most places, but in California obviously the Mexican flag is more prevalent.

Then caught a $2.50 bus ride to the MRY – Monterey Regional Airport just a few miles away from town… where Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca was prominently on display encouraging people to visit.

It was such a fantastic trip. I would love to go back…

Memorial Day Grand Prix of Lime Rock Park (PWC) the debrief

To say I had a blast at this weekend’s (Memorial Day weekend) PWC event at LRP would be an understatement… I really, truly, genuinely had an amazing time. And the people I got a chance to work with totally contributed to that experience.

It absolutely makes a difference who you work with and this time I was super lucky. You know someone else is comfortable with you when she refers to you as “dipshit” to her colleague. That happened. Both of my series starters from PWC were amazing, and it was my honor to be working with them as a backup starter at the Start/Finish stand.

I thought the weekend went especially well. The racing was better than usual. We didn’t have too many bullshit crashes that tend to ruin other PWC events. The recoveries were smooth and quick, and there were awesome battles for positions throughout the field in all the classes. That was awesome.

I got to make a lot of calls on the radio. Which was good. I’m happy I didn’t make too many mistakes with that aspect. I was even able to do a debris run picking up a large chunk of debris from the race winning Turner BMW in the TC race. But I also made some rookie mistakes and they were to be blamed on me squarely. There were three instances where I was meant to point out a car to the series starters and I pointed out the wrong car. We did track it correctly, but for whatever reason I pointed at a different car that was similar in appearance. In the TCA/TCB race I pointed to the SAC racing 080 car instead of the race winning 70 car. Both were black with Green accents, but one was Teal and another bright Green… One was ND and another NC. And yet somehow I mucked it up. With the other starter I had real trouble with the Porsche Cayman GT4’s… we were supposed to track 018 car and I (for some weird reason) confused it with it’s sister car 017… luckily the series starter was better than me at identifying cars but it tripped her up too, unnecessarily. Maybe the dipshit comment was right on the money.

I must have not been too terrible, because unlike the series starter last year she greeted me with a hug in the morning, which was an AWWWW moment. She must not hate me. And on race day she gave me a little gift, a pin of a Guardian Angel that one of her colleagues designed. AWWWW again! She doesn’t want me to die. That’s nice. I really enjoyed the weekend and I really hope I get another opportunity to work with these folks again… somewhere!

Pirelli World Challenge was a standalone feature of this Memorial Day weekend. So we only had the GT/GTA/GT Cup, GTS and TC/TCA/TCB cars at the track. What was different was the fact that the field of TC cars grew so large in size that they got to run a race on their own without the usual TCA/TCB addition. This meant that the TCA/TCB ran a race of their own too… and it was clear as day to see how well the Global MX-5 Cup cars performed on their own in this series. I knew they won at VIR and Mosport (both races I volunteered) but since there was a different overall winner in TC class, it wasn’t so obvious who won TCA. The older Miata’s in TC class though qualified super well, they were in row 2 and 3 on the grid, but as soon as the race started they faltered. Many DNF’d. Which sucks! But the cars are getting old, and the newest addition to the field this year, the BMW 235M blew up in size, it seems like they are completely dominating this series. In the GT race there were quite a few incidences, but overall it was super enjoyable to watch and especially neat to be a part of in such an amazing position on the start stand. I’m incredibly grateful!

Best of all I didn’t have to choose between having lunch or taking pictures during our downtime. I was smack in the middle of all the action. I could just walk over to the dummy grid and take a few snaps before heading back on duty and the series starters were happy to help me out with a few selfie style shots to capture the moment of this experience. It was tremendous!

I would love to do it again!

Cars & Coffee at Tice’s Corner in Woodcliff Lake New Jersey July 2016

Best thing to do in the summer time, check out a bunch of awesome looking cars on a beautiful Sunday morning. This Cars & Caffe was held at Tice’s Corner in Woodcliff Lake, Northern New Jersey. Lots of cars coming in and out. Good variety. Pretty neat experience.

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Oooh… spotted another Miata and moved mine over next to it. Went into Panera Bread to pick up a chai late and another MX-5 joined us!

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C’est fini! See you at the next one ­čśë

Cars and Coffee at the Fireplace in Paramus, NJ June 2016

Another great weeknight get together at a local restaurant. First, hats off to the Fireplace in Paramus for being a gracious host for this car enthusiasts meet-up! Second, to Cars & Caffe for organizing it!

A little bit of oldies flavor this time…

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fireplace paramus cars and caffe 2 corvette

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 3 thunderbird

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 15 cadillac

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 16 mercury

A blast from the past with this Soviet Motorcycle (my dad had one, with the side cart and all…. MADE IN USSR)

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And the rest…

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fireplace paramus cars and caffe 10 alfa romeo spider veloce

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 11 alfa romeo spider veloce

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 13 alpina bmw

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 14 viper acr

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 15 viper acr

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 17 ferrari

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 18 ferrari

And some color coded parking jobs:

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 19 porsche

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 20 bmw

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 21 jaguar

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 22 jaguar

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 23 viper acr

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 24 corvette

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 25 corvette

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 26 corvette

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 27 ferrari

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 28 porsche

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 29 lamborghini

fireplace paramus cars and caffe 30 lamborghini

Looking forward to the next one!

Cars and Coffee Paramus, New Jersey May 2016

I just went to church on Sunday… it was held in a parking lot of Paramus Towne Square and there were a lot of other car enthusiasts in attendance… Cars and Coffee’s around the country are like a religious experience and I’m so happy to be able to attend one.

Today’s variety was incredible once again. Besides some of the many cars I’ve seen before over the past few C&C’s I’ve attended before, there were some new things to oogle at. I loved it!

Here’s the pix:

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cars and caffe paramus towne square 30 aston martin

cars and caffe paramus towne square 29 lambo

cars and caffe paramus towne square 28 corvette

cars and caffe paramus towne square 27 ac cobra

cars and caffe paramus towne square 26 jaguar

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cars and caffe paramus towne square 25 lotus

cars and caffe paramus towne square 23 ford

cars and caffe paramus towne square 22 viper

cars and caffe paramus towne square 21 acura

cars and caffe paramus towne square 20 mazda

cars and caffe paramus towne square 19 miata

cars and caffe paramus towne square 18 oldsmobile quad 442

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cars and caffe paramus towne square 15 ferrari

cars and caffe paramus towne square 14 viper

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cars and caffe paramus towne square 12 oldsmobile

cars and caffe paramus towne square 9 fiat

cars and caffe paramus towne square 10 fiat

cars and caffe paramus towne square 8 porsche

cars and caffe paramus towne square 7 ferrari

cars and caffe paramus towne square 6 lotus

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I’m so happy to see a Miata at one of these, even though I still don’t know who the owner is. Maybe next time I’ll get to wash my car before attending so I could park next to it again (my car was pretty filthy with a cover of dust from yesterday’s trip to Lime Rock).

Props to┬áTony Boniello for organizing these things on a regular basis, and while I understand as an LLC Cars & Caffe is a unique name, but that name sucks… just call it Cars & Coffee like everyone else does and enjoy your day!

See you at the next one. (Hopefully)