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Old 02-06-2021, 05:27 PM   #1
Dave Deborde
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Default Solo Round 11 Wrap-Up By Colleena

October 3rd invited Reno autocrossers back to the Regional Public Safety Training Center for another fun filled weekend! The Course was designed by Ahren Renner, and was a repeat of the first event this year. Dubbed “The Butterfly Effect”, because it looks like one, it was beautiful and very tricky in its simplicity. On the first swoop to a slalom (you must force yourself never to forget to slalom), first you go to the right and then you go to the left, back to the slalom and a fast finish. Knowing it was challenging, Ahren applied good use of cones around the course, in an effort, I’m sure, to make it slightly easier for racers like me!!!

Bryan Brown, in his “B Awsom” Camaro is gonna need new pads after this weekend! The Vintage racer threw plumes of brake smoke up in every corner, turning his class winning 35.6. Awesome!!!!!

Jordan Catalano, in an Arrest-Me-Red Mustang, sped through Ahren’s course like he stole it! Jordan knew exactly when to reign it in and the sporty racer turned quicker and was tighter in the slalom than I thought was possible. A cone and a slight off-track excursion didn’t stop him from scoring a 32.2 for 2nd in FS. I looked up from the wall just in time to see a silver streak that turned out to be Maggie Elorza’s BMW. She flew by with blinding speed, then she lifted a wheel up in a corner, in a rear wheel drive car!! 1st was her destiny and a 29.3 sealed the FS win.

Jonathan Compton controlled his Ford Focus ZX3 passionately, from its precise lean and tire squeal to his forcefulness in the slaloms. A wheel-up exiting the first slalom, the huge break lock up entering last slalom and a perfect finish slalom awarded Jonathan 1st in STH (31.380).

Three generations of Kannans, in two cars and classes, joined us today, adding to the excitement of the day! Although not really a twisty small car course, Pamela Kannan’s Focus ST sure loved the slaloms! Only the sound of acceleration betrayed her effort, but the sight of her wheel-ups gave some indication. She took GS with her first run 29.35 and a 2nd in PAX! Chris Kannan Sr. shared the racer and had at least one wheel up through all slalom cones. All of his laps began with a 29. but a third lap 29.38 crowned him 2nd in GS and 3rd in PAX.

Bryce Redinger’s Corvette turned a fast 28 before anyone else in the class, but a squiggle in the slalom and a tiny push, let Mike Mchugh squeak ahead. On the last lap, the Vette battled a little slip at the entrance of the last sweeper, but Bryce pulled it back in to finish 1st in SSP, with a 28.339. McHugh seemed to struggle with the Ferrari 458, blowing the last slalom on lap one (DNF & many, many cones), sliding wide in the comeback corner and shifting up to third and down to second before the last slalom. A third lap 28.6 put him just behind Bruce for 2nd, while Mike’s wife, Colleena’s first lap, in the same 458, took 3rd with a 29.4. (In my defense, on lap three, I shifted into third on my way into the course, but I forgot and then shifted into fourth, thinking it was third and then had to downshift and I got lost. On my fourth lap, a fluffy bunny ran across the finish line and I was so distracted and concerned, that I lifted before the finish!!!) Everyone turned their heads when they heard the roaring power sounds coming from Roger Jacobson’s Corvette in the sweeper. On his fourth lap, Roger took control (the car looked like it was on rails) and, pushing the racer, he hit the rev limiter before the finish lights for 4th in class with a 30.2.

Mark Berguland, in a front wheel drive Mini Cooper, spent most of the time in every turn with one rear wheel up. A bobble in the small sweeper made it seem like he’d stay in the 35’s, but a clean 34.7 slid him into 3rd in HS.
Andrew Silva’s Ford Focus joined the Wheel-Up Club with a nose dive into the small sweeper. He swept up the class with a 32.4, while Gary Lencioni grabbed 2nd with his Mini Cooper and a 34.190.

Izaak Eberst had a strong start flying uphill to the first green flag, but, sliding wide in the small corner and a couple of cones thwarted that effort. He made his WRX use all four laps to earn his 29.3 and 1st in DS. Kelly Martensen (WRX) didn’t drive too deep in that small corner like many, and she zipped through the finish slalom perfectly, to grab 2nd in class with a 30.6. Tori Speicher kept the baby blue, Honda Veloster completely flat, no lean, until a push in the small corner brought a wheel up, making the run exciting and rewarding. A 32.1 snagged her a 3rd place in DS.

Cameron Drudge hit the Rev limiter heading into the first slalom on lap two, stayed tight and tidy through the rest of it, and then got sideways in the last slalom, to prove he was in it to win it! Strong acceleration sounds gave away his effort, and the radical wing on the STI kept the rear end planted long enough for Cam to tear off a 28.7 for 2nd in TSM. Kevin Weiss, in his popular BLUE Beast, rotated around apex cones like they weren’t even there! He brazenly shifted in the slalom for a good, strong finish and the win. His 27.7, 1st overall lap came sandwiched in between a couple of cones, so don’t worry...even the fast guys tag 'em!!!

Ed Reichley seized 1st in TSSM and 3rd overall when his Miata crossed the lights in 28.1 seconds.

Sean McManmon drove the stripes off a Mustang SVO, but perfect car control and a smooth third run won him 1st in SM (32.6).

Sutee Dismanopnarong’s Honda S2000 hit the Revlimiter at the entry of the track, every lap! In another car with a gigantic rear wing, Sutee was able to perform a gorgeous side-slip to the line, and just barely missed the last cone (unlike many others). Two 29.5s were divided by one 29.327 and a 1st in SSM was his reward.

Steve Waclo pitched his classy, 1987, E-Street, Alfa Romeo Spider Quadrifoglio against Christian Kannan in the family Miata. There was magic on their third runs, as both cars did their best, the springy, Hemi Spider landing the win with a 32.0, Chris trailing a tad behind (32.4)

Steve McLaughlin’sbeautiful 350z[/B] crouched low, lean and tight in the finish slalom on his first lap, and that’s all it took! The smooth 27.8 landed him 1st in PAX, 2nd O/A and 1st in STU!!! What a ride!

In another winged wonder, Denis Savelyev put his Lancer Evo through all of its paces. Bouncy in the small sweeper and wheel-hopping everywhere, hard braking in the sweeper kept the car in control and a 2nd in class was his (29.32.

Boris Vujasinovic, in a fun, but deadly serious yellow GTO, had a huge head of steam at the start lights, and the car lurched forward with aggressive acceleration, at every opportunity. Charging hard, the GTO pushed like crazy the last lap, sliding everywhere and stepping out at the start of the slalom and into the sweeper. His third lap 29.0 stood for 1st in CAM C, 2nd in PAX. After cranking out a 29.5 on his first lap, Pat Drudge, trying to catch up with Boris, took a shortcut and slid the GTO sideways through the first gate. No improvement was had, so he took home 2nd in CAM C.

CAMT included Carl Engel’s Mustang, which is always such a wonderful site, a beautiful car that lifts with every throttle push and leans on every apex cone. No wonder a 33.7 and 1st place title was Carl’s reward. My favorite boyfriends all had Mustangs, but none of them sounded like that one! It demands all the attention whenever he runs!!!

Sticking with the CAM classes, Mark Heinrics, in another silver Corvette, kept the sleek racer tight and tidy in the first slalom. Then, he decided that sideways in the slalom at finish was fast and more fun! A second lap bobble at the exit of the last sweeper didn't deter him at all, and the slippery supercar finished 1st in CAMS with a 29.1.

Jason Lewis spent most of each lap on three wheels, the Honda Civic R hopping side to side in each corner. He pushed the DSP racer so hard, you could hear the tires gripping the concrete, and he was so tight in the slalom, it looked like he was going straight!!! He crossed finish lights in 28.4 seconds for 1st in DSP and 5th overall. Going so fast it looked slow, Michael Fertitta, in a beautifully prepared Mini, fought with wife Roxanne for the second spot. Every lap, he got a wheel up under braking, and, looking for a fast finish, he went wide at the last slalom cone, ruining the lap. Totally controlled in the same car, Roxanne worked her times impressively down to a 31.2 (3rd), but Mike’s third lap 30.3 claimed the 2nd spot.

Daniel Hayward, in an Audi TT, spent an awful lot of time shifting! How, with all of that distraction, he managed to turn two 31.8’s is beyond me, but the grippy STX took the checker with a final 31.3 for the win.

Nick Johnson had a screaming fast, lap one start, then TFSP Corolla got a bit unruly! Nick was just hanging on, as the car looked like it was on ice! He was sawing at the wheel, sliding around every corner, and crossed up through the slalom. He was so crossed up, I couldn’t tell if he was driving the car or the car was driving him! Then the cones, oh, the cones, cones all over, cones everywhere! A 29.8 was a welcome, last lap achievement for the win.

Another consistent competitor, Ahren Renner sandwich two fast laps with two ever so slightly slower laps to come out on top in FSP. After starting with a nice 29.4, the next two laps were experiments, which included being crossed up at the sweeper exit and missing a shift in the small sweeper, but another 29.4 closed the deal. The Trolrolla sped through the finish slalom so tight, it looked like it hit every cone, but the orange soldiers escaped unscathed.

Bob Williamson stomped on the gas and crushed the brakes in an effort to bend his Corvette to his will. The Vette listened to every command and obeyed (except for a little slide into the gate) and a last lap 30.9 locked up 1st in AS. Amazingly, Bob has had 22 Corvettes, “Cut my arm, and I bleed Corvette!” When asked how he got started in Autocross, he said that in 1967, while in the Air Force, he had a ‘67 coupe with a 435 hp, 427. He was based for four years in Minot, North Dakota, and when he and his buddies could, they autocrossed at a nearby mall parking lot, but in the winter, they autocrossed on frozen lakes! They called the autocross club, The Random Sports Car Club, because, “You brought whatever you had!” When asked what he did in the service, he said he had his finger on the Minuteman missile launcher button, and smiling, he said, “You could shoot them over the pole if you had to!”

Ten newbies negotiated nicely around the exceptionally difficult track. Vlad Radulescu, in a Tesla Model 3, was smooth and tight everywhere, and, except for the tire squeal, you wouldn’t know there was a car out there!! Looking for the next car to enter the track, I didn’t hear the silent Tesla coming, the black car charged (get it?) up the hill to the start line like a panther! His fastest lap 31.6 placed him 1st with the only 31 second lap, in the eighteen Novice field.

Driving the perfect car for the slalom, David Davidow cautiously negotiated the bright red car through the line of cones. The Camaro copped a squat and stayed there, as the confident driver turned a 32.21 on run four. Thank goodness an off-track, lap three excursion didn't faze him and 2nd place in Novice was his.

Cedric Rogue brought out his totally cool Camaro Z28 to see what the silver sports car could do. Lap one saw it sideways through the first gate, the wide rubber just barely making it through. As if to rethink the whole thing, Cedrick was much more prudent the second half of that lap, but brake smoke into the small slalom, a little fish tail out of it, and wiggle into the second slalom, kept him from besting his second lap 32.28 for 3rd.

William Gomolka's Impreza squealed as he flew into the slalom on a screaming fast first lap! Even a little push in slalom didn’t stop him from improving on lap three and he took the novice 4th (32.7).

Jerome Gamolka came flying through the first lap, got sideways at exit and missed a spot, so it didn't count. No matter, the silver Corvette had three more laps, so he swung a fishtail out of the small sweeper which looked like fun, but it didn’t help his time. He only needed another lap to turn a 32.90, just ahead of Ian McIntosh’s Corolla (32.9 for 4th.

Jose Estuipinan, in his epic Nissan 350Z, has decided to own his piece of Solo by turning at least one perfect lap each event! That lap came his second time out, so when he slid wide around the first corner, he decided to just keep drifting his last two laps (he’s known for that)!!! Five Novices finished in the 33’s, and coming in on top of that fight was Jose’s 33.1. Skip Bry’s 911 was beautiful to watch out there today, delicate lines and graceful cornering made it look easy, but strong, controlled finishes resulted in first and last lap 33.4’s. Roaring power sounds reported a much more aggressive third lap, and a 33.3 put Skip in a Novice 8th. Tortured tire screams announced Spenser Burke’s sporty Acura ILX as it flew fast into the small sweeper. A little FWD push would have rattled anyone, but not the guy driving the car advertised as having, “Edge-to-Edge Fearlessness”. That’s what it took to work up to his fastest last lap 33.4. Michael Rea's Camaro leaned into every apex, powered out of every corner and was incredibly nimble in the slalom. He kept it from sliding wide and drifting (the powerful car really wanted to) and Michael rounded out the top 10 with a 33.5. Rodney Lewis' Hundai Veloster, had a wild first lap and a controlled third, but his last lap was so smooth it was fast! His 33.6 was one tenth out of the top Novice ten.

“Thrilling Power” was how the magazines described Jennifer Kauble’s M240! The rear-end of the feisty BMW scooted around exit cones like it was on ice! Tire squeals revealed the effort it took for her to finish one/one hundredth of a second ahead of Royce Roque with a 34.47. Even with huge, wide wheels and lots of stick, Roque proved you can still get it loose if you're trying hard enough! On his last lap out, a big spin in the slalom ended in tears, but a clean third lap 34.48, ended in another very close finish. Eric Rush could be seen working at the wheel of his MX-5 and steering with the throttle everywhere, but the car never stepped out of place. The Miata just loved that last slalom cone, sliding past it (wheeeee!) every lap with ease and ending the day with a 34.9.

On his first lap out, LaShonn Ford threw a Camaro (why not a Ford? I’ll have to ask), too fast into the small sweeper, taking a wild ride and scrubbing off time! A careful third lap sandwiched a 35.45 between two 36.6’s giving him a tiny edge over Pravine Elango’s Mazda 6 (35.46). Everyone could hear Pravine working his throttle up the hill and into the entrance of the fast track, but the grocery getter wanted it too much and the last lap got away.

Cullen Sloboda’s Corolla had a wheel up around every corner, every lap, and, bonus, you could hear it skipping along the ground! Sure, the Toyota pushed here and there, but what can you expect when it’s always on three wheels! He was sideways at the finish slalom on his fastest lap and a 36.1 finished just a tic ahead of Veera Vakkalagadda. Veera showed up in a nice, convertible Mustang and had the same luck on his last lap, and his fastest 36.4 rounded out the group.
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