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Re: Race Report, sort of...

To: Henry Frye <>,
Subject: Re: Race Report, sort of...
From: "Jack W. Drews" <>
Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2002 14:57:41 -0500
Stop stop stop

Laughing this hard isn't good for my heart

At 02:07 PM 9/23/02 -0400, Henry Frye wrote:
>OK, so it was not really a race, but it's a report I know you autocrossers
>will enjoy!
>The town of Stowe, Vermont hosts The British Invasion, a huge car show open
>to all British marques. It's the biggest British car show in New England,
>about 600 cars this year. Sure, it has lots of really nice cars polished
>within an inch of their lives, but the people are great, the town is great,
>and the event is just superb.
>The organizers started a "Backseat Drivers" contest last year. Was a great
>success, so they did it again. The concept is they blindfold the driver and
>the passenger talks the driver through a course of cones like an autocross.
>This is a timed event with a time penalty of 5 seconds per cone touched.
>The event is held on grass.
>Now, picture pristine XKE's, Bentleys, Austin Healey 3000's, MGA's, etc,
>inching their way around the course fearing they might scratch their paint
>from hitting a cone! The smell of clutch lining hangs thick in the air...
>Then there was me, Phil Barnes and my three seasons daily driver, a 72 Stag.
>Phil has had his TR6 for 25 years, and holds an SCCA competition license
>for Rallying. He has been navigating for years, and currently has a ride
>for a couple of SCCA Pro Rally events a year. He was the logical choice for
>my navigator as we planned to show the spectators how this was to be done!
>Under Phil's direction we were going to get around that course _way_ faster
>than anybody else and if some cones got in the way, so be it! To make
>matters even more fun, the grass was wet from the rain that night...
>We lined up at the start, I was blindfolded. The word was given, and with
>flying dirt and grass I was off. Whenever I was pointed in the direction of
>the way we needed to go, Phil's instruction was "Stomp it". Nobody ever has
>to tell me that twice! Grass flew everywhere. Chris, the guy running the
>event was truly scared when we were going around one of the three circles
>and Phil purposely directed me right into the cones. As I heard those
>orange suckers bouncing off the underside of the car the crowd was
>screaming, and Chris was yelling, "Stop, Stop!!!" Being a good rallist, I
>only listened to my navigator, and accelerated. Phil was kind enough to
>inform me that we were in the cones....   ;-)
>The course had an area where you needed to pull into a stop box, then back
>out at 90 degrees into another stop box, then pull out and go the other
>way. The rules said I needed to get within one foot of the end cone. As
>Phil was not saying slow down, I was tooling along with the crowd and poor
>Chris screaming away. I got the Stop order from Phil, hooked up with
>reverse and as I was backing into the box the sound of Chris pleading with
>me to stop was just too much. I stopped, but we were 5 feet from the cone!
>Chris directed me to go forward, so we did, again with much grass flying
>everywhere. The last "Stomp it" was overheard by Chris, and he was trying
>ever so hard to get me to pull away in a civilized manner......
>So, we finished 35 seconds faster than anyone else, but mowed down 12 cones
>in the process giving us 60 seconds of penalty. I understand we will have
>pictures real soon of the whole thing, with cones popping out from under
>the Stag... I will be sure to share the link when I post them on the web.
>Still, came in 4th overall and for sure was the crowd favorite. Funny, I
>don't think they are going to let us compete next year!   ;-)  Especially
>after we admitted we both hold competition licenses....

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