26th Jun2017

NASA Utah Round 4: Batten Down The Hatches!

by Michael Chandler

NASA Utah Round 4 was a weird, interesting weekend.  I didn’t stick around for the races on Saturday because I had to go to my friend’s wedding, where I ran into Dave Kizerian’s (NASA Utah director. Big guy, affable, ginger.  Know who I’m talking about?) wife.  While I was out I guess the Spec Z guys decided that that was the perfect time to get wild.  Jerks!  

Then Sunday came to be, where it was far windier.  I learned that Mike Kresser has a Porsche tattoo, wind does stuff, and I either need a haircut or a chinstrap for my picture takin hat. Don’t want it blowing on track and causing a black flag.  Enough of that, let’s talk about who did what!

Taking both of the GTS2 wins on the weekend was Tom Rogers, in the trusty #160 BMW 325i.  Remember how I just said Sunday was windier than Saturday?  You can see that in the lap times.  Tom’s best lap in Saturday’s race was a 1:48.923, whereas Sunday’s best race lap was 1:51.181.  I was talking to Blake Troester ahead of Sunday’s qualifying session, and he mentioned how much the wind was impacting some of the cars.

Speaking of Blake, he and his fry-o-later grease powered Porsche took home back to back wins in ST4.  He and his crew chief, Grimace, were seen celebrating their win in the Lake Point McDonald’s Play Place.

The Rearden Racing camp collected a pair of GTS3 wins.  Steve Marx (I’m out of Marxist jokes) took the win on Saturday in his white BMW M235i Racing, and Greg Warnock took home the win in his Mercato Partners liveried M235i Racing.

In PTD/Japanese Classic Touring Catagory: Troy Duffin in DUFN8LY, a Datsun 510, took both of the weekend’s wins.  Those who are reading this, let’s put together a field of classic vehicles (around the same vintage of Troy’s 510) that would be awesome to see out there.  I’m thinking another 510, an SA RX-7, a couple of E30 BMWs, and a lunatic in an old Civic.  Like a 1300 CVCC hatchback.  Yeah, that’d be insanely awesome.  Drop your choices in the comments below!

Did you know that Paul Mitchell can be a handful?  Yeah, it sets records and wins races, but according to Todd Green it was a bit hairy to drive.  He remedied this by doing an alignment! And corner weighting the car.  And replaced some bushing, two control arms (one of them was  bent!), and changed the spring rates. All that work yielded the same results: wins in PTE.  Wait, when did PM get a hole in its hood??? 

Andy Moench, proud pappa and owner of a sweet rookie stripe, won Saturday’s Spec Miata race.  Could he repeat on Sunday?  Well, no… Carter James won on Sunday, so therefore Andy couldn’t.  We can only have one winner Andy!  Congratulations James.

Thunder Roadster is still the most fun group to watch.  Bob, JD, Joe… The other guy who wasn’t on the timing sheets.  Anyway, Joe Sim’s sideways antics paid off on Sunday, but Bob Evans channeled the wisdoms of the giants and got himself the Saturday win.  

Perry Needham is establishing his dominance in 944 Spec, which is weird.  Not Perry winning all the races on the weekend, or even the class itself.  The name is weird.  Shouldn’t it be Spec 944?  Anyone?  Greg?  Perry?

Spec Z had their own race group on Saturday, which is great because that means the class is growing and according to folks with business degrees and acumen: growth is good!  To that end, we haven’t seen that many different winners.  I’m not going to complain, especially when Tom Kaminski and his retro HKS themed Z win.  Which he did on Saturday.  On Sunday the class was back with the Thunder group, which isn’t a bad thing either.  Other not bad things are Lyfe Motorsport’s #22 entry, driven by either Cole or Kyle but not Chris because he’s “Other Gary”, taking the win in class.  Speaking of class, guess who wasn’t at round 4.

If you guessed Shawn Murphy, you’d be correct!  You’d also be correct if you guessed Santa Claus, Jordan Taylor, or any number of other imaginary people.  So that means he and his “street car” won’t be mucking up these results!  One person benefiting from the cowboy’s absence was Jordan Priestly.  He ran the JDP Motorsports C7 Corvette development mule extremely consistently in TT1, posting a 1:39.833 on Saturday and a 1:39.762 on Sunday.  

Two other people benefiting from Shawn’s fall into the Mystery Spot are Brendon Stewart who, despite figuring out his new tires, posted a 1:43.392 on Saturday.  Other good news for Brendon: he fixed his electrical issues and has all of the forward gears!  Always glad to see his *rolls 1D10* Evo 6 fully healthy!  Sunday’s win was claimed by the man in the brightly colored, and hugely winged Lotus Elise: John Howar!  His best time on Sunday was a 1:44.972.  

A pair of iconic red vehicles split the TT3 wins.  Both are two wheel drive, and both are sporting forced induction.  One is a great FWD platform, and the other is a 3 Series.  Yes, of course I’m talking about Tyler Mikesell and his red Integra and *moves results page closer and further from face* Geoffrey Crockett and his red E36 M3!  Tyler posted a 1:49.675 on Saturday, while Geoffrey threw a 1:50.477 on the board.

Nam Yoon (more like Nam Yoonicorn!  AMIRITE???  I’ll stop now) and his white S2000 managed to beat out a TT4 field consisting of a BRZ (or FRS, whatever the hell Mike drives), a Lotus Elise, a Mustang, and a Spec Z (along with some other stuff) to earn both wins on the weekend.  He posted a 1:43.116 on Saturday, and a 1:42.717 on Sunday.  Good job Mr. Yoonicorn! Ok, now I’ll stop.

John Butcher’s TTC winning shares a few things in common with a Jaguar E-Type: they’re both British (well, close enough), both iconic vehicles (see previous parenthetical), and both have hoods that open forward and have integrated headlights!  However, only one of them did anything useful at round 4.  John posted a 1:52.098 on Saturday, and a 1:54.938 on Sunday.

TTD was a war of momentum cars, seeing Ken Russell and his Kanjo styled Civic hatchback hustling his way to the win on Saturday with a 1:50.573.  Trever Pope, in the more practical Miata that is a Subaru BRZ, took the win on Sunday with a best 1:52.051.  

The winningest Miata in all of UMC history, Paul Mitchell, was awarded more victories.  This time Todd Green, or any of the other seventeen drivers of the car, stood atop the podium to get the shiny TTE hardware.  Saturday Todd ran a 1:48.382, and Sunday he ran a 1:47.052.

Mike Kresser, the guy with the Porsche tattoo, took a pair of gold medals back to his motor-home for his TTU exploits.  Yeah, motor-home.  Complete with a coffee maker!  I don’t care how hot it is, coffee is the lifeblood for lunatics like me.  His coffee fueled best laps in his 996 generation Porsche 911 Cup car were a 1:37.049 on Saturday, and a 1:36.723 on Sunday.

And now we’re on to the final race group: Thunder.  And in the Thunder race group is the GTS4 field, where Daren Jorgensen picked up another pair of wins in his M235iR, which is apparently done up by Turner Motorsports.  At least that’s what the stickers on the bumper, and the giant windshield banner lead me to believe.  More on this, as it develops!

We had only one other GTS class running, and that was GTSU.  As you can see, there’s a different Porsche that we haven’t seen in a while here.  That’s because Al Tiley’s regular Porsche, the #31 911 GT3R, had a bit of a boo-boo after some contact was made with the Makes & Models Huracan Super Trofeo during qualifying.  It’s racing, bad touches happen between cars occasionally.  Thankfully everybody seems to be ok!  Or was when I talked to them in the paddock.  Al a bit more-so, because he swept the weekend.

George Smith was in fine form on the weekend.  He was running the Corvette in ST1 trim, which was a pretty good steup.  He took home both class wins, and the overall race group win on Sunday.  His battle with David Lockwood was an amazing one to watch, especially from the top of the Attitudes.

ST2, a class exclusively featuring Makes & Models employees, has been an interesting one to watch over the year.  Brendon has had his share of bad luck.  Engine troubles, then losing a gear and having to kick his fuse panel to keep the car running.  BUT he’s got that figured out!  Meanwhile Toby Crawford has been tweaking his Pink Ribbon Racing, and a bunch of other sponsors, BRZ as he’s been going.  He also had to deal with some issues related to the engine letting go at the end of last year.  Who would reign supreme: the Bad Luck Evo, or the ever changing BRZ?  Well, the Evo took this weekend.  Skills played a part, but so did Toby’s windshield being covered  in oil. Perhaps next month Toby’s aerodynamic trickery will push him ahead of Brendon.

ST3, the class where the winner is going to win a Friday test day in one of the Ford Performance Racing School’s BOSS Mustangs, saw a V6 Mustang beat out a pair of FPRS Boss 302 FRS Mustangs and a Minion on Saturday.  Yes, Steve Burns’s VP Racing Fuels/Ian Lacy Racing Mustang is only packing six cylinders of fury, but it was more than enough to take the win.  On Sunday, a Minion beat out all the Mustangs.  The Us Against One Clothing M3, called the Minion and not the Banana Mobile, held off all the ponies for the win on Sunday.

And finally we come to the Super Unlimited class, which was filled exclusively by Rearden Racing entries.  On Saturday, Greg Warnock in his Cayman GT4 Clubsport held off Lara Tallman in the TC spec 370Z.  At least I think it’s spec’d for Pirelli World Challenge TC class.  Anywell, Lara claimed the win on Sunday.

And there you have it, 1600+ words on the NASA weekend that was.  If you’ve made it this far, congratulations!  You deserve a prize of some sort.  How about this, you’re prize is knowing that next month (July 14-16) the NASA drivers will be plying their skills on the West Course.  But if you want a real prize: come up with the best nickname for any of the drivers mentioned above, send it to [email protected], and we’ll dig up something in the office (could be a t-shirt, could be some Hot Wheels, could be some random item!) to give to you.  See you all next month!

Find us on social media, subscribe to the CAMcast podcast, and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
02nd Mar2017

The CAMcast Goes Hollywood

by Michael Chandler

Hey hey hey everybody!  We’re back with one hell of an episode for you.  You’ve seen the NASA Utah coverage we’ve provided, maybe you’ve come out to an event or two, but do you know how we got a NASA region?  Or what goes into running a NASA region?  Well, we have Matt Guiver here to answer those questions, and more!

You can stream the episode via the player above, or download it here.  Or if iTunes is more your thing, we’ve got you covered.  Whichever avenue you choose, please rate, comment, subscribe, and share these episodes around!  If you like it, then you probably know some other people who’d enjoy this stuff.  

NOTES

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 1

by Michael Chandler

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

The 2016 NASA Utah season came to an end this past weekend.  I know, I’m sad too.  But instead of the usual, conventional, “one track configuration for the entire weekend” business that we’ve seen at every other weekend this year; Dave, Matt, and Momma NASA (Cheri Miller) had something special for the end of the year.  Instead of running the Outer Loop, or the East track, or even the Full track, they arranged it so the drivers could race on ALL THREE IN THE SAME DAY!!! Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the TresDuro.

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IT’S BACK, BABY!  Just like last year, and the year before; BUT, unlike last year, they were blowing the dust off the gigantic Full track.  To the best of my knowledge, the last time the Full track was run was two years ago.  I should probably explain how one wins the TresDuro, since it has been a year.  It’s pretty simple for the race groups: you qualify once, and start the first race from that position.  Where you finished in that race is where you start the next race from.  Where you finish also gives you points.  Driver/team with the most points at the end of the third race wins.  For TT: they take your fastest times on each track, add them together, and person with the lowest overall time is the winner.  Got it?

It’s been a hot minute, but the drivers managed to drive the track without getting lost or forgetting which configuration they were driving!  However, the weekend wasn’t without incident.  That incident, while unfortunate, provides a convenient segue into the actual race coverage.

THUNDER

German Touring Series Unlimited

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Taking home the win in GTSU by a mere 5 points was Makes & Models, in their Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo 620-2.  Their main competition throughout the day was David Donner, in his Porsche 911GT3R.  You know, the other Effort Racing car that showed up at Air Power Racing at the beginning of this year.  David had the pace to run away with it, but a broken axle in race 2 served up the win to Makes & Models.  The TresDuro would hinge on the third and final race.  The Lamborghini was on the pole, and Les Long’s 997 Cup car was starting from second.  And then this happened.

This is video of the start of the third race, shot from Michael Eifling’s ST1 Corvette.  It was uploaded by Brendon Stewart, driver of the Makes & Models Huracan.  FULL DISCLOSURE: I’ve known Brendon for many years, long before he was working and driving for Makes & Models.  Makes & Models has been friendly with us, we have stickers on the Huracan and a few other Makes & Models cars.  That said, it’s pretty clear Les makes a move to the left to keep the Lamborghini behind him.  Then as the Lambo starts moving to his right and passing him, he moves to the right and pushes him West pit out.  The result of all of these moves was the Huracan spinning out in turn one, and having to rejoin at the back of the field.  Despite that, Brendon fought through the field and finished second.

 

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5 points behind Makes & Models was David Donner.  It’s been a few rounds since we’ve seen him at UMC, but he’s been spending that time wisely.  He’s very in tune with the 911 GT3R, and showed INSANE pace in the first race.  Good God was he flying!  David, I’m begging you!: come out for more races!  I’d love to see you, David Lockwood, Derek, and the DXDT guys have an all out death match (not really a battle to the death, but you know what I mean) one NASA weekend.  Do it for me, do it for the children, do it for America!  Or England if your James Burke.

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In third place, with 255 points, was Les Long.  He narrowly edged out David Lockwood for the final podium spot.  Les is a really good driver, but I’m not used to seeing him drive as aggressively as he did on Saturday.  From what I’ve seen over the years, he is most definitely not a dirty driver.  Just an aggressive driver, something we typically enjoy.  While he may be at fault for the incident at the beginning of the third race, I think he just got caught up in the heat of the moment.

Super Touring 1

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Being alone in a class has advantages sometimes, and Michael Eifling took full advantage of being the sole ST1 driver.  He took the fight to Robert Gardner, in the orange Jagermeister Porsche, and they had amazing battles all day long.  Good on ya Michael!  Thanks for not just turning laps, and taking the easy win.  Also, thank for bringing Buddha!

Super Touring 2

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ST2 started the day with two competitors: JR Smith in his Porsche Boxster, and Toby Crawford in his Subaru BRZ.  By the end of the first race, there was only one.  The head gaskets in Toby’s BRZ let go, allowing the man, the myth, the legend that is JR Smith to take the win.

Super Touring 3

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ST3 had a field of 5 cars: four of the Ford Performance Racing School BOSS 302 FRSes and the Minion mobile, the UAO Clothing M3.  I know I saw Alex in the car on Saturday, so I’m going to say it was he who won the shiny, not chocolate filled gold medal for ST3.  I’m sure I’ll hear about it if I’m wrong, but until then: congratulations Alex! UPDATE: Todd Ainsworth also drove on Saturday. Matt Guiver probably wasn’t in the car on Saturday, so we can rule him out.  So congratulations Todd and Alex on the win!

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In second place was Frank Gannett.  Frank the Tank has been pounding away in that Mustang, and doing a damn good job too.  Hopefully we see Frank in a different chassis next season, preferably one that doesn’t belong to the fine folks at the Ford Performance Racing School.

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Rounding out the podium was Josh Williams, in the #85 FPRS BOSS 302 FRS.  It’s in my favorite color, which makes it the best looking Mustang they have at the school.  Ask for it by name!

Super Unlimited

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Super Unlimited also had a five car field, but unlike the ST3 field there wasn’t a dominant model in the field.  There was; however, a dominant team: CA Sport.  They represented four of the five cars, the fifth being George Smith’s Corvette.  It was also a rather diverse field: the aforementioned Corvette, a PWC TC Class 370Z, a widebody E92 M3, and a pair of Cayman GT4 Clubsports.  It was one of those Caymans, the #41 driven by Andrew Smith, that took home the win.

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Chasing Andrew was Davis Warnock, in the #70 CA Sport Cayman GT4 Clubsport.  It was really fun watching these two cars duke it out for first place, and mix it up with some of the other classes.  And the new liveries look great.

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Locking out the podium for CA Sport was Lara Tallman in the 370Z.  Hey!  I just noticed that it has one blue mirror!  I like that.  And also congratulations to CA Sport for locking out the podium!  That quite the feat, especially considering who all could’ve run in the class and taken a spot on the podium.

And there you have it for Thunder!  Looking for Lightning or Time Trial?  I’ve got those in their own posts, so you don’t have a 3000+ word article to rifle through

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14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 3

by Michael Chandler

Time Trial C

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With a total time of 7:24.302, Max Dufford claimed a big TTC win.  Having to drive three different tracks in one day, including one that nobody has driven on in a couple of years, is a test for anyone.  Max rose to the occasion, and drove his Boxster to the limits set forth by the modifications allowed in the rulebook!

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Taking home a shiny piece of silver neck wear was Rod Kujaczynski. Still rocking a RaceCo decal, but sans cowboy hat, Rod’s total time was an impressive 7:29.662!

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Bringing home the bronze was Joe Evers, with a total time of 7:30.852.  Three medals went to three people who drive German cars.  Coincidence?  I THINK NOT!

Time Trial D

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Trever “with an E” Pope managed a combined time of 7:53.343, not too bad for running around in a more practical Miata.  Trever is one of the many drivers who helps out, and instructs the HPDE drivers.  The young up and comers, or older up and comers, can learn some things from Trever.  He may be alone in TTD, but he’s consistent and he doesn’t get caught up trying to run down someone in a faster class.

Time Trial E

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Piloting his trusty Mazderati, Tyler Nisonger threw down a total time of 7:41.375.  As you can see in this photo, Tyler saves weight by only having one door mirror.  These are the little things that separate the winners from the “also ran” crowd.

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Erick Gerday also ran, but wasn’t an “also ran”.  His combined time of 8:02.322, while not stellar, is nothing to sneeze at.  Explore the limits of the rulebook a little bit, and get some more seat time, and Erick should start knocking seconds out of that time.

Time Trial B

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Darin Beaudoin, the goofy fella in the best Miata ever, took home the TTB gold.  How?  NO CLUE!  But I do know he waved at me on one of his out laps.  Did I get a picture of it?  NOPE!  Blame Andy Moench.  He was ahead of Darin on track, and waved at me first.  Quick PSA: If you’re going to wave at a photographer do it on an out lap, a pace lap, or a cool down lap.  Don’t do it when you’re trying to set a flyer, or mid race.  It’s one of those things that’s cool for the two of us, but will be infinitely embarassing if I have to write “and as they waved at me, the accidentally dropped two tires off track, which caused them to spin, which got them stuck in the sand trap”.  Ok, with that out of the way we can move on.

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Jan Gerday, running both TT and Spec Z, had a combined time of 7:32.775.  Running six total session in the same car is quite the feat, and it’s validated when you get a medal at the end of the night.

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Another Z getting a medal.  The 350Z is a useful tool in a racing situation, if you know how to use it.  And Justin Jones knows how to use it.  His 7:38.607 was six seconds off the pace of the Spec Z driver Jan Gerday, but eight seconds ahead of fourth place finisher David Muskovitz.

Time Trial 3

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James Pasquier was back, after some noticeable absences in the recent past.  The lack of a doctor’s note notwithstanding, James’s combined time of 7:06.328 got him another gold medal to add to the sizable pile.  I assume it’s a pile.  What I’m trying to say is James wins a lot.

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In a stunning upset, Mechanic Mike Bratsch beat out Andy Moench!  This after Mike helped Andy fix his car between sessions.  Sponsored by crippling instruments of debt, AMEX credit cards, Mike pounded out a 7:08.188.  You can’t drive fast enough to out run your debts Mike.  You just can’t.  Sounds cryptic, but really is absolutely meaningless.

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Andy Moench, with a car fixed by the skilled hands of Mechanic Mike, drove slower than Mechanic Mike.  He did drive all of the sessions, and he wasn’t that much slower than Mike.  His total time was 7:09.727.

Time Trial 2

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Shawn Murphy continued to set records.  He reset his record on the Outer Loop, and took over the East and Full track records.  His car still has a full interior, and he drives it around on the streets.  His total time was 6:37.029.  It was the fastest of the TT drivers.  His car, and how fast it is, hurts my brain.  I don’t understand it, I never will understand it, and I’m ok with that.

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Finishing in second place was Jenn Wolthoff in the Makes & Models Porsche 911 GT3.  Her total time was 7:09.621.  I understand that time, and how fast that car is.  There is no witchcraft involved in it.  Just good, clean, wholesome, pure, unadulterated speed.

Time Trial 1

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TT1 had two drivers who drove in all three races AND all three TT sessions.  And they did it in different cars.  David Gilliland hopped out of his Spec Z and into his Viper T/A.  His 6:58.015 was deserving of a gold medal at the barbecue.  I agree with the decision to give him a gold medal.

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David Bradshaw was a nother Spec Z driver who was jumping between cars all day.  He would jump out of his Spec Z, get some feedback on his race, then hop into his 996 Cup car for a TT session.  Then out of the Cup car, feedback, into the Z, and race.  His game of musical cars didn’t hurt his times, as he ended up with a 7:03.08.

Time Trial Unlimited

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Mike Kresser got himself a gold medal, after playing musical cars like his Lyfe teammate David Bradshaw.  Mike drove like a man possessed and posted a total time of 6:48.304.  Not too bad for a guy with a bad back and another race car to drive.

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Greg Warnock, and his widebody M3, came up just short against Mike’s 997 Cup car.  His total time was 6:58.414.  Again, not bad for someone who was pulling double duty all day.  And if you’re someone who says “I hate flares!”, then you haven’t seen this car turning laps.  It needs those flares to cover the massive slicks it uses to grip the tarmac.  You don’t hate flares, you just hate useless and/or ugly flares.

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Rounding out the top three is James “1000% not Jordan” Collier.  Less than two seconds separated him from Greg.  James’s total time in his Viper ACR was 7:00.335.  Notice how a lot of the photos are with the headlights on?  That’s because they got way behind schedule at some point.  So far, in fact, that the final TT session got underway AFTER sunset.  I made the most of it, and got some very cool pictures.  The corner worker at Tooele Turn had a brief, but loud meltdown.  We were all out of our comfort zone, corner worker.  But we survived.

And there it is, at least for TT.  Looking for Thunder and/or Lightning coverage?  I’ve got them in separate posts.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.

 

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14th Oct2016

2016 TresDuro: Tres Means Three Part 2

by Michael Chandler

German Touring Series 2

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Five cars took the grid for GTS2, not a bad number.  We had some familiar faces show up back on track, and another 911.  Never a bad thing.  Unfortunately my favorite Porsche model didn’t take the top spot, BUT my favorite Boxster did.  Adam Heller in the 09 Emotive Boxster took home the win in all three races, and walked away with some shiny hardware.

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In second place is Tom Rogers, in his E30 3 Series.  The old #160 was dead reliable, as far as I could tell, and finished each race on the podium.  Quick side note: I don’t know why I want to, but I have this strong desire to spell Tom’s name with an H.  Thom instead of Tom.  No reason why, but I just really want to do it.  Anywell, Tom ran well all day, and all season.

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Getting himself the only medal that is man-made (gold and silver are naturally occurring, mankind had to figure out how to make bronze), was Chris Haunold.  I’m pretty sure he keeps chatting me up at the events, but I’m not 100% sure.  If it is, you’re a pleasant fellow.  If it isn’t, then there’s a pleasant fellow roaming the paddock and making small talk.  Neither is a bad thing.

Pro Touring E

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The sky is blue, the sun rises in the east, and Todd Green (aka Poppa Smurf, aka the unofficially official corrections department of this fair website) won himself another PTE medal.  It wasn’t easy, the blue car was willing to go fast, but it made Todd work for it.  The hard work paid off, and Todd got himself some more hardware.

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Troy Duffin in his Datsun 510 (still packing an L series engine and drum brakes in the rear) was your second place finisher in the class.  It’s good to be shooting photos of Troy again, takes me back to when there was NASA sanctioned open wheel racing at our weekends.  Good times.

Rounding out the podium was Team Slap Hands in the #158… car?  I shot 4600 photos over two days, and I don’t have a #158, which (according to MyLaps) only took part in the first race.  I do have some photos of a #58, which was around the cars that the Team Slap Hands car supposedly did.  Who is the #58?

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PAAAAAAAAAUUUUUUUUUULLLLLLL MITTTCCCCCCHHHHHHHEEEELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL.  Speaking of MyLaps, guess who didn’t run the race that produced this photo opportunity? Yeah, so good ole Paul (who had a rotating cast throughout the weekend) either took home third, or fifth.  Regardless, Smilin Joe Sims is listed in 4th. UPDATE: Yeah, it was all Paul Mitchell.  The 158 and 58 are one and the same.  The Timing and Scoring system doesn’t like having the same number with multiple drivers in a class, hence this whole confusion.

Spec Boxster

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Spec Boxster is still a thing, and it’s still occupied by one man.  One hero: Mark Boschert.  He wasn’t all by himself though.  His pace on two of the three races kept him close to either the GTS2 cars, or the PTE field.  On East he outran the Spec Miatas by a few seconds, but trailed the slowest Spec Z by over four seconds.  Boxsters are cheap, people!  Come on!  Someone else grab one, and get in on some spec racing!

Spec Miata

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It was Williamson and Bond vying for the class win.  By taking the first two races, and finishing second in the third, Chris Bond earned himself a much deserved martini.  It was close though, Matt Williamson kept close in those first two races, just like he did all season.  The TresDuro was a microcosm of the entire Spec Miata season, and it was awesome to watch.

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Matt Williamson was knocking on the door all season, but he couldn’t get over the hump.  I’m telling you, next season he’s going to clear that hump.  Spec Miata is an old class, but it always breeds great drivers and good racing.  Next season, spend some time watching Matt Williamson fight for the crown.

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Craig Shane finished the day in third.  He’s a grinder, he was the only Spec Miata driver to start every race this season!  That’s sixteen races!  Craig is a lot like the Miata he races: dead reliable.  Craig deserves some sort of award for his reliability.

Spec Z

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You guys remember when Spec Z was just three cars?  I do.  You know how many cars took to the tarmac for this year’s TresDuro?  16.  Man how this ridiculousness has grown.

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Topping this ridiculousness was Arthur Golebiowski, one of the OG Spec Z drivers.  Doing this for two and a half years gives you some skills and insight, and Arthur has all of those things rolling around his head.  His average margin of victory was over six and a half seconds in the TresDuro, which begs another question: what does he think about while he’s all by himself at the front?  Is he like Kimi Raikonen, dreaming of his next nap?  Kittens?  Arthur is a mystery, wrapped in an enigma, strapped into a silver 350Z.

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Not an OG, but definitely a long time Spec Z driver, Chad Aalders took home second place!  Chad spent most of his day battling another OG, and looking longingly at Arthur’s taillights.  Well, I’m not so sure about that last part, but he spent a fair amount of time looking at the back of Arthur’s car.

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Rounding out the top three is Tom Kaminski.  He spent plenty of time in his retro liveried Z battling Chad, and chasing down Arthur.  Tom and Arthur having been battling it out with each other since 2014, and I hope they keep it up for years to come.

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Speaking of blasts from the past, we had a Thunder Roadster field!  JD Stull came out swinging, and took the win in all three races.  Normally I’d stop the Thunder Roadster writing at that, BUT THERE WAS ANOTHER THUNDER ROADSTER!

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Yes, there was another!  Jihn Han, coming out of nowhere, took home some hardware.

And there it is, the round up of the Lightning group.  Looking for the Thunder and/or Time Trial write ups?  I’ve got separate posts for them.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
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20th Sep2016

More NASA Utah Goodness!

by Michael Chandler

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Went to the Tinners meet on Sunday!  Still working on those photos, and something else, so here’s another 20 photos from this past NASA Utah weekend!  Do you want more from this weekend?  Perhaps in the form of something to hang on your wall?  Well good news!  I’ve just put a ton of photos on the SmugMug page!  Head over there to grab a paper print, a high resolution digital copy, or even a mounted canvas print.  Support those who support you!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
16th Sep2016

NASA Utah 2016 Round 7: The Penultimate Round!

by Michael Chandler

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It was a crowded weekend, and it was a good weekend.  We had the good ol’ boys and the plucky series from California joining our local heroes: the NASA Utah drivers, crew, and hangers on.  We’re going to start our recap of the races, at least Saturday’s races, in the Lightning group.  Specifically in the GTS2, where Chris Haunold drove like a madman to take the win.  He didn’t have to drive like a madman to do so, because he was all by his lonesome on that day.

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Papa SMurf is wise, but Papa Smurf also has had some issues with his Smurf mobile.  This Saturday it was some unintended three wheel motion that sidelined the blue Miata, but thankfully Todd Green has access to the legendary, mighty, and all powerful Paul Mitchell.  With the noble steed betwixt his thighs underneath him, he secured himself the win in PTE.

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In a tight Spec Miata race, Chris “three measures of Gordon’s; one of vodka; half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it over ice, and add a thin slice of lemon peel” Bond somehow held off Matt Williamson.  Matt was on a mission the whole race, but couldn’t get anything to stick.  So great to see this race happen.  I’ve been telling you people to watch Spec Miata!

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Our lone Thunder Roadster entrant, JD Stull, ran a solid race and turned a fastest lap of 2:16.545.  Not too bad.

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944 Spec has a new driver!  Otto and Sam have a new challenger: Greg Troester, and he made his presence known by taking the class win by over nineteen seconds!

We’ve now come to Spec Z, which was insane.  Not because it was a close race, but because almost everyone felt the need to test the off-roading prowess of the Nissan 350Z.

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There were a lot of Z’s covered in dust at various points in the day, and plenty had some after the race.

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Speaking of, Arthur Golebiowski took the win.  He dominated, because that’s what he does.

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Jeff Burton, in his Cayman R, hung a 50 second lead on Mark Reichman to take the GTS3 win.  Now, we need to have a chat Jeff.  You seem like a nice enough guy, but you need to do something about the looks of your car.  It’s too understated.  Hear me out!  Throw a classic Porsche livery on there.  Not Matrini, not Rothman’s, definitely not Gulf.  No, you need the Pink Pig.  Think about it…

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Anywell, in GTS4 we had Byron Smith and Darrell Troester battling it out.  Unfortunately, Byron retired from the race.  Having the win in hand, Darrell kept getting good laps in.  His best time in the race was a 2:03.079.

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ST1 had the closest finish of the day, and maybe of the season.  Bob Evans and Michael Eifling had a close battle all race, with neither one giving an inch.  Bob, being cagey, got the nose of his Sprint Cup Ford Fusion JUST ahead of Michael’s C5 Corvette at the line.  Bob’s margin of victory was .045 seconds!  This battle was good enough for Bob to win Racer of the Day honors at the barbecue.  Recognizing the hell of a drive Michael had, Bob decided to give the award to Michael.  It was a great act, but not without a touch of Bob-ness: Dave Kizerian made the announcement that Bob was giving his award to Michael, Michael came up and gave Bob a hug.  Bob, while still hugging Michael, spun 180 degrees.  They let go of each other, and Bob began making his way back to his seat… with the award still in his hand.  He gave it to Michael, but it was a fun little sequence.

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Despite not having a splittler, due to it coming loose and disintegrating during an earlier TT session, Toby Crawford took home the ST2 win.

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Todd Ainsworth, in the Minion mobile, defended himself against a herd of Ford Performance Racing School Mustangs in ST3.  He held of the colorful ponies, and got himself the win.

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We had a new challenger in Super Unlimited.  Well, a new car.  Steve Burns hopped in this former Trans Am Mustang, and went toe to toe with the likes of the Makes & Models Huracan ST, the Air Power Racing 911 GT3R, and Swamp Thing.  He did well in the new car, beating out Swamp Thing for the class win, and coming in P2 overall.

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In P1 overall, and setting a new class record in the process, was Derek Wolthoff in the Makes & Models Huracan ST.  He ran away with the race win, with a 29.990 second gap over second place.

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Lyfe Motorsport had a few drivers out in some Porsche Cup cars.  In the yellow 996 Cup car was David Bradshaw, who took TT1 with a best time of 2:06.481.

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We had a dramatic upset in TT3!  Mike Bratsch, taking advantage of James Pasquier’s absence and Andy Moench being a new daddy (congrats buddy!), ran a fast lap of 2:09.044 and got himself a shiny new piece of hardware.

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We had some Miata on Miata violence in TTB!  Darin Beaudoin, in his white S2000, faced an attack from Nam Yoon, in his white S2000.  Less than a second separated them, but in the end the affable Darin got himself another win.  Does this win prove that the S2000 is the ultimate TTB machine?  YOUR GUESS IS AS GOOD AS MINE!

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Max Dufford, in the wrong-from-a-purist’s-POV-but-right-from-a-physics-stand-point Porsche, ran a 2:16.078 en route to a TTC win.

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Trever with an E Pope took home another TTD win, and hit the kerbs in the Attitudes like they owed him money.

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Pictured above is Papa Smurf, winning PTE with a best time of 2:15.343 and before he drove a wheel off of the Smurf mobile.

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In the second of the Lyfe backed Porsche Cup Cars was Mike Kresser.  He was driving it in TTU, and took home a win with a 2:01.452.

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This f*ckin guy.  I mean, seriously.  Shawn Murphy set a TT2 record last month AND became the first Subaru to break the 2 minute mark on the Outer Loop, and now this month he breaks his own record by over half a second.  Is it not good enough for you Shawn?  WHY CAN’T YOU JUST BE HAPPY?!?  But seriously, this is a hell of a feat.  He didn’t just break his own record by a little but.  The .6whatever it is he broke it by, is a a decent margin.  And this is still a “full interior street car”.  Imagine if it were lighter…

And that’s that.  We have one more round coming up, the legendary TresDuro!  Keep October 7, 8, and 9 open, because there will be multi track configuration racing on Saturday, and FULL TRACK MADNESS ON SUNDAY!!!  You best be out there.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.

 

15th Sep2016

NASA Utah Round 7 Gallery

by Michael Chandler

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Photos by Michael Wells

I am bailed out, once again, by the talented Mr. Wells.  I’m a bit behind because I’m trying to get Big Ronda running for the Salt City Tinners meet this weekend, and after running flawlessly the car decided to not start today.  Fun! But that’s a story for another day.  Today’s story is this massive gallery Michael Wells sent over from the NASA Utah/NASCAR/USTCC weekend we just had.  42 images await your eyeballs, so get to clicking!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
12th Aug2016

The Utah 6 Hour

by Michael Chandler

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It was the beginning of the best ten days on this year’s calendar.  Acting as the meat in a sandwich where the delicious bread is a Salt City Drift event and Pirelli World Challenge, and the condiments are a NASA Utah weekend, was the annual Utah 6 Hour.  Now a staple on the NASA Utah calendar, the Western Endurance Racing Championship stop provides a unique opportunity for the drivers and fans to drive into the night, and see nothing but lights piercing the dark Tooele night.  And if you were out around turn 5 around 10:30-11, you would’ve seen me with a string of LED lights strewn about my torso.  I was easily identifiable, for safety!  Anywell, let’s talk about who took home a trophy!

E0

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Lyfe Motorsport was out with one of their own Spec Z’s (the Towne Storage Z) and supporting the #99 DLG Racing Z.  Showing that 350Z is life, the Lyfe backed teams finished 1-2 in E0!  The Towne Storage Z completed 147 laps in the 6 hours, with the DLG Z four laps behind them.

E1

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In E1, completing 153 laps in the allotted time, was the #65 E46 BMW of Strom Motorsports.  It was the teams second win of the day, having taken the win in the GTS5 class during the Lightning sprint race earlier.

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The Fit is fucking go!  The #12 Honda Fit of Honda Performance Development completed 143 laps in 6:01:09.257, and probably had to stop for fuel once.

E3

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It was a battle of the Miatas in E3: the mighty and legendary Paul Mitchell versus the bug-eyed RJ Racing Miata.  I mean bug-eyed in the nicest way.  Look at those lights!  Those lights lit the way for 147 laps, and lit their way to victory.

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The ENP had one entrant, the Valkyrie Autosport Elan NP01.  Despite the teams best efforst, the little prototype went behind the wall after 29 laps.

ES

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This was a battle: the TruSpeed Autosport 997 Cup car versus the Makes & Models Huracan Super Trofeo.  A tried and true chassis versus a sprint race car.  WERC class leaders one win away from clinching their championship versus a team with multiple regional championships under their belt?  If you’ve been paying any attention to how these posts go, you know that by seeing the picture of the TruSpeed car that they won.  Not only did they win the Utah 6 Hour, they locked up the ES Class championship.  Congratulations to them!

ESR

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Now we arrive at the car I was most excited to see running.  Toby Crawford, driver of the Pink Ribbon Racing/Makes & Models Subaru BRZ, told me that there was a Ginetta G57 at UMC and that it was racing in the enduro.  It was the Ryno Racing team, sponsored by Design Masonry.  The G57 is based on Ginetta’s LMP3 design, and is probably a lot the same.*  The big difference is that the LMP3 spec Nissan engine, rated at 420bhp, has been replaced with a Chevrolet LS3, which makes 150 more horsepower than the LMP3 engine.  I was excited to see and hear the 900kg prototype tearing through the night, but unfortunately the car was retired after just 72 laps.

And there it is, another six hour race in the books!  I’m already looking forward to next year.  A tremendous shout out to all the race officials, corner workers, and safety crew for sticking it out until midnight.  A big thank you to the family, friends, and well wishers who came out and watched the race and cheered the teams on.  And all of the congratulations to all of the drivers and crew members for racing in the longest race on the NASA Utah calendar!  There were over thirty cars entered in the race, and they all took the green flag.  It was, as always, an amazing experience.

We can’t wait for next year.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.

 

15th Jun2016

THUNDA! NASA Utah Round 4 Thunder

by Michael Chandler

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The rain stayed away for the qualifying AND race for the Thunder group.  It was an incredible turn of luck, and something some of the drivers didn’t see coming.  We aren’t used to luck when it comes to weather!  Because of the poor weather, some of the drivers packed up and called it a day.  In my opinion, they missed out on one hell of a race.

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Darrell Troester took home yet another GTS 4 win.  He valiantly battled himself, and through sheer grit and determination he defeated himself to take home the win.

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I had to ask myself several questions during the race, but the only one that really is relevant right now is “When did they start running GTS3 cars in Thunder?”  I asked myself that, because Jeff Burton was out in his Cayman S, a GTS3 car, with the Thunder Group.  I let it go rather quickly, which was good because I watched Jeff drive a solid race, and take home the win.

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ST3 was a quartet of Ford Performance Racing School Mustangs, and Todd Ainsworth in the Us Against One M3.  Not good odds for the banana mobile, and things shook out accordingly.  A Mustang did win, and it was driven by a repeat winner, but it wasn’t Frank Gannett.  It was Dan McKeever, in the most evil looking BOSS at the school.

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Out of nowhere (maybe Colorado?  I have no idea) came a man in a small British car with a Toyota engine.  Bob Schader, said man in tiny car, managed to harass some of the ST3 field during the race.  Why would he do such a thing?  Because he was the only guy in ST2.  Thanks for coming out Bob, and for putting on a show.

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Sorry Bob, and occasionally George, but my favorite ST1 car was BACK!  Dan Worley and his glorious Porsche were out and running!  He was alone in ST1, but he was out there!  Man, I love that car.

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If I tell you that a 996 GT3 Cup car beat a 911 GT3R, you’d call me crazy.  And for good reason.  The old Cup cars are still great, but the GT3R is a different beast altogether.  That first statement would be crazy, but it happened!  Or so says My Laps!  Listed as the class winner in GTSU is Mark Brouse, driver of the above pictured 996 GT3 Cup car.  How did he do that?  He ran the full race, and the Air Power GT3R didn’t.

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SU was a four way deathmatch.  The R8 LMS Ultra driven by Kristian Boodoosingh faced off against Les Long and his 997 Pirate mobile, and a pair of E92 M3’s.  This was the Euro fan boy race of the day!  The only thing missing from the German fight was a Mercedes.  In the end Kristian in the R8 took home the win, after battling to get around Les.  Can we do that again next month?  Please?

Speaking of next month, there’s a race weekend next month!  It’s taking place on July 15th, 16th, and 17th on the East track.  Join us, won’t you?

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
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