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Road & Tach: The Reno SCCA Newsletter
Reno Solo Round 9 Notes - by Colleena McHugh

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In a break from the summer heat and the thick, choking smoke, Round 9 of the Autocross started bright and early at the Regional Public Safety Training Center on September 19. The track, coined as Mini Monza: Mozzarella Madness by creator Michael Ufford, was just that. If you compare the two track maps, the similarities are glaringly obvious.

We had a good turn out, which is important for the success of the program these days. Being from San Francisco, I’m used to big participant numbers, but the manageable Reno Region entries means usually getting four or five runs and finish by mid-afternoon.

A Solo Safety Steward training class was held just before the event so Reno has 18 new solo city steward candidates! The newly licensed solo safety stewards of these candidates are, Raina Sobiloff, Blake Sobiloff, Ahren Renner, Izaak Eberst, Kelly Martensen, Mark Skeem, Michael Ufford, Patricia Berlant, Nathan Berlant and Travis Hisken.

Brice Redinger is heading up our new Mentorship Program, where Safety Stewards are available to anyone who would like some help navigating the courses. The mentors will be wearing bright orange vests at the events, and anyone can request information, tips, hints, and even a passenger driving coach!

I have autocrossed for 40 years, and I will tell you, Reno regions courses are some of the most creative, challenging, and exciting layouts I have ever driven. If you can navigate these things, you can race anywhere! Today’s course was just that, difficult in its simplicity, yet tricky enough in the deceiving slower spots to cause a lot of excitement.

One of the more exciting cars in more ways than one, was the Ferrari 458 Italia run by Mike & Colleena McHugh. Mike was a little too spirited at the entry to the finish straight and wiped out 4 cones on his third run, making him Cone Killer of the day (Nine people from three corner worker corners stations had to pick up Mike’s cones) “I had it in automatic and it acted Squirrely”. Run 2 was his fastest and a 27.451 took first in SSP and top time of the day! I did poorly in the slower parts of the track and didn’t finish in the top three. Battling it out for second place were two Corvettes, one driven by Bryce Redinger and the other by Ed Reichley. Bryce took the lead early with a 29.3 and Ed countered on run two with a 29.0. Redinger’s Corvette wiggled at the exit of the sweeper, then he gathered it up, steering with the throttle all the way to the end, finishing a third run with a 28.0, a full second and a half faster than his previous run. Ed cranked out a 28.4 to steal 3rd from me! Roger Jacobson in a beautiful Yellow Corvette, got sideways at the exit of the sweeper, wiped out one cone, but recovered nicely to continue on to finish right behind me with a 29.6.

Patricia Berlant, sharing a Corvette with husband Nathan, missed a cone in the sweeper her first time out, but made up for it by shaving off four seconds on a clean second run to finish 3rd in TSSM with a 31.8. Sutee Dismanopnarong started out strong in a Honda S2000, whipping out a 29.7 for the SSM win on a first run. Nathan Berlant killed a cone and got a bit lost but rallied in the end with a 30.2 for 2nd.

Tori Speicher’s front wheel drive Veloster’s swoopy turns and all clean laps finished second in the DS, with a third run 32.2. Kelly Martensen, in a zippy WRX also ran cleanly to a 30.7 last lap win.

Steve Waclo’s Hemi Spyder, with its open, raspy exhaust sounds, leaned into every cone, but only tossed one in four runs. He was super fun to watch, and a good steer-with-the-throttle last run 32.8, sealed third place in ES. Chris Kannan drove his Miata around all cones beautifully smooth, tight and tidy. He just got the car, and with four aurocrosses under his belt tossed back a 30.5 for the ES win. Christian Kannan, in only the second time in the Street Tire Miata that he shares with his dad, came within almost 2 seconds of 2nd place Chris, with a 32.6 for 3rd.

Maggie Elorza was so hard on the brakes into the short straight, smoke billowed from underneath her BMW, but she turned a 29.4 for first place in FS.

Right before the back straight, Mark Berguland’s FWD, HS Cooper’s turbo kicked in and you could hear the tire chirp a mile away! A 34.0 locked him into 3rd in class. It cost the lives of three cones for Andrew Silva, in a Ford Focus, to claim the HS 1st prize, with a 32.5 second run. Paul Gilbert snuck in between them in a Cooper, and a 33.8 for 2nd in class.

Kevin Weiss only needed one run to win TSM in his Blue Beast. A 27.9 stole 1st from Cameron Drudge. The meaty throttled STI turned a close 28.2 on his third run for 2nd. 3rd was claimed by Sean Mcmannmon in a Mustang on another fast first lap (32.4).

Anthony Tan picked up speed on lap three, with lots of lean, lots of accelerator and aggressive tire squeal, the Chevy Impala turned a 32.1 for the GS win.

Anthony Arreyque Corvette was not only beautiful, but powerful through the kink. His conservative, first lap 30.5, took top honors in BSP.

Maggie Elorza, handled the BMW perfectly, and with smooth throttle steer, she went 29.4 seconds fast for the FS win.

Ahren Renner, in his quick RWD T1FSP Trollrolla, also throttle-steer drifted to a 29.9 1st place win. Nick Johnson’s Corolla missed a spot-on lap one, but a second lap 32.2 carried him into 2nd.

Bob Williamson’s red Corvette was just beautiful, it had a nice lean, quiet tires and muffler, and was fast as All Get Out! A 30.5 last lap honored him with the AS win.

DSP Roxanne Fertitta’s Mini really wanted to lift up that unweighted wheel, but I didn’t have a good enough view to see if it actually made it. It stayed on the track and off the cones and a last lap 31.0 placed her into 3rd in DSP. Jason Lewis, in a Honda Civic R, also stayed off the cones and worked his way down to a 28.4, 1st place finish . Michael Fertitta slid in between them in the Mini with a 29.4 for 2nd.

Pat Drudge had his GTO looking just like it was on rails! Nice car control, perfect lines and no lean, so his second lap 29.0 held on for 2nd in Cam C. Boris Vujasinovic took the GTO to the win with a last lap 28.5. William Crowel’s Camaro blew by the finish in 29.5 seconds to shatter 3rd place.

Clearly not his first time, Carl Engle brought out a Super Fun Cam T Mustang, ran all clean laps and ticked off a 32.9 on his last run, for 1st in class.

STU’s Steve McLaughlin had a strong finish, powering his 350Z to a 28.0 win. Denis Savelyev Lancer Evo finished a close 28.9 for 2nd.

The Novice class was huge today, with 28 entrants, the class representing the bulk of our cars on the grid!

In Travis Hisken’s first Novice season, he is first in points and 1st in class, but even though his Silent but Deadly Tesla Model 3 AWD pushes, (It’s 4000 pounds and heavy) he loves it. His last lap 29.0 won over all other novices! The new Novice is not new to autocross, his dad raced 15 years ago in Fernley. Travis took the Starting Line Scca School at Crows Landing and highly recommends it for newbies. Mark Skeem snuck out of a tight pickle in the back kink like a pro and held on to 2nd place by three hundreths of a second! His 29.96, was just a tick ahead of the Isaak Eberst’s WRX. His smooth turns and AWD commitment turned a 29.99 into 3rd place!

MR 2 Chris Snyder pushed his MR2 to its limit in the fight for fourth. The MR2’s a sweet ride, smooth around cornerns, with great sound, just a beautiful car (I had one, can you tell?) and he missed 4th by 2/100ths! Blake Sobiloff took that spot with a careful first lap 30.1 in his gorgeous Cayman. Chris just missed it and took 5th with a 30.3. Sean McPike’s Solstice got Squirrley at exit of the sweeper on his second run but rode it out to 6th place with a 30.7.

Sedric Roque’s Camaro was the perfect picture of quiet elegance, with smooth, clean laps, and it was super fun to see whole car lift from the power when he got on it hard. It was a good lesson in the use of RWD around corners, and his 31.0 claimed 9th. Dane Weiler was a half a second back with a 31.5, the Camaro was a handful, but it stayed on the track, and after a strong finish, Dane snagged 10th.

One tenth of a second behind was William Gamoika. His AWD Suburu Impreza performed great four wheel drifts around corners, and a last lap 31.60 set off another great battle. Skip Bry, in a Porsche 911, handled the track with purposeful intention, sliding the pretty car into one off-track excursion before settling on a 31.64 and lucky position 13.

Only 2 Novice drivers got into the 32’s, Amish Anand (32.6) and (32.7) Royce Roque. Anand showed a good use of the throttle in his BMW to squeak ahead of Roque’s Camaro for 15th.

Novice Jennifer Kauble’s M240, like many, lost it in the kink, pushed a couple of cones around, and made big tire squeals in the corners, trying to stave off Kidrick Fore (270z). It was all for naught, the two of them turned exactly the same time, to the thousands of a second! Their 33.047’s were a mere half second off of Spencer Burke’s ILX. His smooth handling of the corners resulted in a slick 33.1.

The rear broke loose as Jose Estuipinan tried to autocross a Z set up for drifting! A drifter wanting to master all types of driving, the Novice used way too much throttle entering the back straight. Three cones and two tours of the countryside left one chance for Jose to get a clean lap. The Most Improved Driver of the Day drove a beautiful run for a 33.6 that did it.

Keeping all of the 34’s to himself, Troy Stansbury threw his Outback at every cone. Leaning and squealing, the wonderful, sprightly sound revealed a 34.3 third lap.

Alvin Weiler decided to make a 35.1 the creamy center of a DNF Oreo Cookie! His Camaro logged 5 points for his effort. Christian Godeho pushed into the finish cones like Mike, but his Mustang did not cream any of them! He turned the fastest time of the 36’s, with a 36.0. Running not far behind, in the same car, Chris Sceafidi found that the Mustang proved to have too much power, and, after an early course schooling, turned a fast time of 36.41. Miki Jones brought out a Chevelle and, what sweet ride! We were all treated to the lyrical whaaaaa, whaaaa, as he shifted up through the gears at the finish, wonderful fun! He kept that beautiful car off of every cone to turn in a time so close to Miki’s (36.47), I had to look twice at the results!!!

Pravine Elongo’s Mazda 6 made a big boo-boo at kink in backstraight, threw away a couple of laps, figured out what went wrong and had no more drama, turning a 37.3 to round out the class. That’s what the Novice class is for! Drive hard to figure out what you and your car can do, then whittle your times down, and move up the class ladder. We all did it! Good going Pravine and all the Novices today. Welcome! SCCA needs you!!!
SCCA Board of Directors Election

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Current SCCA Area 9 Board of Directors member, Charlie Davis is running for his second and final term on the Board. Charlie has represented us well during his first term and deserves serious consideration for re-election.

Subject: Candidate statement
I have served on SCCA's National Board of Directors, representing Area 9, since late 2016. I joined SCCA in 1978 as
an autocrosser , Pro Rally organizing committee member and road race tech inspector. Since then, I have served on
numerous advisory committees, the Solo Events Board, and spent over 20 years as a San Francisco Region Solo
Steering Committee member, chairing that committee five times. I have also been a roadrace communicator and club
While serving on the Board of Directors, I have been liaison to the Club Racing Board and more recently to the Solo
Events Board and Time Trial Board. Our current Board of Directors has made a lot of progress toward getting a handle
on the financial situation of the club and specifically the Pro Racing portion of the club. I can't take any personal credit
for this progress, as the 13 member Board is truly a collaborative effort along with the Executive Team in Topeka.
Despite the bizarre circumstances of 2020, we are strong, lean and poised for an even brighter future.
Our club structure is a very complicated business model. We are a club with member staffed committees and boards,
and at the same time a business with a paid staff that implements our programs with club members as shareholders. I'm
very proud to have been a part of our search to find a President and CEO several years ago and I am very glad that we
found Mike Cobb to serve in that capacity. When you find someone capable of wearing all the hats that the President of
this club wears, the Board of Directors has to know when to step back and let that person run the show, and have the
confidence that he will do it well. We have that confidence in Mike.
The person who you choose represent San Francisco and Reno Regions needs to be a team player who values all of our
programs equally and the hard work, dedication and contributions of all the members. I believe that I am that person and
I serve the club without conflict of interest. I also believe in continuity, and feel that when an incumbent is representing
the members well, he or she should continue into their second and final term to that end.
Thank you for allowing me to serve our club.
Charlie Davis
SCCA Area 9 Director 2016-2020
Racing In Another Era

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The following is a memo to Carol in response to a message sent out about the Reno Update Status. He is a member of Reno Region and has been a SCCA member since 1954. Thought I would post this and help others “remember when”

We missed the movie Ford vs. Ferrari, so I ordered it from Best Buy and we watched it last night. It lived up to the publicity. We both enjoyed it a lot! There was one error in it, but a necessary one. Miles died at Riverside, not Willow. It was in the High Bank as I seem to recall, and in a race, not a hot lap. But Riverside is now a Shopping Center or something, what else could they do. His loss had to be remembered.

I was on the track with Miles twice. In '62 before I got the teaching job at UNR, I was in the East Bay and a member of the SF Region. I went to a meeting in the City and won the Door Prize! A Free entry to a race at Riverside that spring. A friend in Reno was storing my race stuff, Brooklands screen and straight pipe. I kept the roll bar always in my TR-3 and drove it daily. That was Ed Shaddock, likely he died before your time here. He ran a Signal Oil Station at Fifth and Keystone and had been a Stead Survival Instructor. He was going to tow the TR to Riverside, but snow delayed him. We arrived only in time to practice with the big Modifieds. I had a National License so they let me do it. It was fun waving Balchowsky past in Ol Yeller! Miles went past too in as I recall his famous "Flying Shingle" MG Special. In my EP race I managed 2nd Overall despite a slipping clutch. A Twin Cam MG beat me, but he was still in sight on the straight. There were Porsches in the race, so I don't remember the class the MG was in D or E. I really liked that track, second only to Laguna Seca, but with the Stockton Port Course a close one to those. I did get a free clutch sent to me by TR for being lead Triumph. Kas Kastner from TR was there, nice man! My TR was pretty stock, I had the 2.2 liter cylinders that became stock in '58 and some head work. Also well balanced, trimmed flywheel and Michelins instead of the Dunlop 5.50-15 bias plys. Not even headers.

In a race at Laguna Miles lapped me in practice coming out of the corkscrew. That taught me that the line was not a close in apex, it was the middle of the track after just leaving the turn. There was positive camber there. That saved me a couple of seconds a lap. But that was years ago. Miles was in what must have been the world's fastest Sunbeam Alpine. He pulled away so fast heading down to 9. No, I'm sure, it was not a Tiger.

I did stand next to Shelby one time in the pits at Road America. We and many more were watching the left at the bottom of the back straight. I can still smell the Sheyboygan Fire Department's Brats cooking on the grill. He was driving that weekend so was in the driving suit. He had on an old pair of shoes so bad that he had used electrical tape to wrap the front with an old Champion spark plug box to keep the sole on. He didn't look anything like the actor in the movie. They got one of those pretty close to Miles look. I was crew that weekend for one of our wealthier Cincinnati members. He was driving a Pontoon Fendered Testa Rosa. My candidate for the prettiest race car ever. We had some well known drivers in town. Briggs Cunningham being best known. Also Ebby Lunken, and Deacon Hively, an Eagle Squadron Pilot from WWII. Terribly nick named! One of our members dated his daughter. Some time we'll have time to talk of her and others with us taking Sunday rides in Portago's 2 liter Ferrari.

Still an addict and worse, an old one that likes to reminisce!

Time Trials National Event at Thunderhill

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Reno Region is co-hosting the first SCCA Time Trials National Event at Thunderhill West on April 13-14, 2019. For information about classing your car, safety requirements, licensing (it's easy and free), and registration info please go to http://timetrials.scca.com.
"Pumpkin Dash" PDX & Time Trial

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The season final track event will be on October 3 & 4, 2015 at Thunderhill Raceway Park on the 2 mile west course. Entry to this event includes:
-Overnight Camping (Tent or RV) with electrical hookup Fri and Sat nights
-Lunch both days
-Social Sat evening
-4 twenty minute sessions each day for all groups
-Instruction for PDX drivers on an as needed basis

----New for this event, an option is available to drive Saturday or Sunday and Flag the opposing day. This option will be available to the first eight eligible people that sign up for each day.-----

Follow these links for additional information and to register

Event Flyer: www.renoscca.org/documents/Trials/2015/October flyer.pdf

Program: www.renoscca.org/documents/Trials/2015/Oct 3_4 PDX_CT_TT Program.pdf

Info & Registration: www.renoscca.motorsportreg.com
Two Days of Thunder PDX/Time Trial

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The first event of the 2015 season is March 21-22, 2015 at Thunderhill on the 2 mile West course.

Sign up now at http://www.renoscca.motorsportreg.com!

Event Flyer

Event Schedule
Jim Gandy Passes Away

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Long time Reno Region member and valued friend Jim Gandy passed away quietly at his home on October 15, 2014 following a lengthy battle with cancer. During his many years with the club Jim was involved in all aspects of the Club as a Competitor, Event Organizer, Board Member, Regional Executive and Editor of Road & Tach. Jim took great pleasure in organizing Road Tours and Track Tours as a way for people to enjoy touring in their vehicles with other enthusiasts.

Jim was a source of wisdom and advice for me on so many occasions and was certainly one of the people that helped make this the great SCCA Region that it is.

A Celebration Of Life ceremony is pending.

Jim Gandy - May You Rest In Peace!
Obituary: Anthony Settember

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Anthony (Tony) F. Settember
July 10, 1926 - May 4, 2014

Tony passed away peacefully at home with family and friends by his side on Sunday May 4, 2014. Tony was born July10, 1926 in Manila, Philippines.

He led a full life, from helping to fight the Japanese as a teenager in the Philippines, to racing in Formula 1 in the early 1960's. He also raced at Le Mans, Spa, Nurburgring, Monza, Targa Florio... the list goes on. Upon returning from his racing in Europe, he raced in the Can Am series, USRRC, Trans Am, F5000 and many SCCA events. Before going to Europe he had his own auto repair business specializing in British cars and Mercedes Benz. He was part owner of VeySet Mercedes Benz in Ontario California in the early 1950's. He was also a member of the American Legion, the National Rifle Association, the Mercedes Benz Club of America, and The Sports Car Club of America

During WWII in the Philippines, Tony helped fight the Japanese invasion as a teenager, before he was enlisted with the U.S. Army. He was captured by the Japanese, and was a POW for a short time. He managed to escape and continued fighting until the Liberation.

Tony also held a private pilot license and owned several planes during his lifetime. As well as enjoying flying, he also enjoyed attending the Reno Air Races. If you knew Tony, you know that if "race" was involved with any activity, he would either be a participant or an enthusiastic spectator.

Tony touched many people in his life... all of those who knew or met Tony would say that he was a true gentleman and a very sincere and giving person. There isn't enough space to list all that Tony accomplished and did in his lifetime.

He is survived by: Patti, his wife of 31 years, Son, Anthony (Linda) of Rancho Cucamonga CA. Step daughters, Susan Steneri, Yerington NV, Laurie Cordano (Duane), Sparks NV, Annette Steneri-Meehan (Greg) Reno, NV. Grandchildren Michael (Taunee) (great- granddaughter Elise) of Rancho Cucamonga CA , David (Nickie), of Ontario, CA, Lauren Thomas (Scott Vandover), Sparks NV, Aubrey Meehan, Reno NV and Sgt. Colby Ann Thomas, USMC Mali, Africa, and special friends Carolyn and Alan Prentiss of Carson City NV.

Tony has taken his last checkered flag. He will be missed by all... rest in peace Tony, in your final victory circle.

Special thanks to St. Mary's Hospice care staff and all of our friends and family that helped us through this difficult time.

Services will be June 6th at 10:30 AM, at the Northern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Fernley NV. There will be a celebration of life at 1:00 PM at his daughter's (Annette) home, 604 Sugar Tree Court, Reno NV. Please no black attire.
Huge Turn-Out at the Season Opening Solo Weekend!

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Article submitted by Kevin W. (k-dogg39). Photos thanks to Tim (Tim.Flat4).

Wow! What a first weekend to start out the Solo (autocross) season!

Saturday started off with the Solo School and Test & Tune.

This is such a great start to the season, it provides the opportunity to beginners (or Veterans) to be able to come out and take a class taught by Solo School Chief Instructor Dean Benz in the morning and move on to driving obstacles and courses in the afternoon. There were approximately 30 students and many volunteer instructors and test-n-tuners.

Instructors and test-n-tuners are able to drive the course elements while students are attending the class. The elements consist of a skid pad with a constant radius or a figure 8, slalom of varying difficulty, as well as a short portion of a course. Once the class is finished students head to their cars to drive while instructors join them in the passenger seat. Students rotate through the entire course elements learning valuable techniques.

After a brief lunch break, a full auto cross course is set up. Dean leads a guided course walk for instruction on what to look for and how to attack certain areas of the course. Then back to driving! Students ride along in the instructors cars for a couple runs then get in their own cars to drive the course. Great times were had by all attendees!

Sunday brought us to Round #1!

What an incredible turnout we had for the morning run groups. People just kept showing up. With approximately 130 drivers attending the event, it may have been our largest opening round ever.

The day started off with the blue run group which consists of the Prepared competition class (BP, CP, DP, EP, FP, GP, XP), Street Prepared 2 competition class (DSP, ESP, FSP), Tuner competition class, and the Vintage Competition class.

Then came the green run group which consists of the Stock 1 competition class (AS, ASR, BS, BSR, SS, SSR), Stock 2 competition class (CS, CSR, ES, ESR, FS, FSR), and the Stock 3 competition class (DS, DSR, GS, GSR, HS, HSR). The afternoon had a few less participants than in the morning.

The White run group started off the afternoon sessions. This group consists of the Street modified competition class (SM, SMF, SSM, SU), and the Street Touring competition class (STC, STF, STR, STS, STU, STX).

The final run group was the yellow group which consists of the CAM competition class, Junior Karts competition class (JA, JB, JC), the Modified competition class (AM, BM, CM, DM, EM, FM, FSAE, KM) and the Street prepared 1 competition class (ASP, BSP, CSP, SSP).

On to the results!

Top Raw Time went to Bryan Nelson in the Lotus with a 42.371, followed by Ahren Renner 0.470 from first and Kevin Weiss 0.610 from first place.

Top Open PAX was taken by Ahren Renner with a PAX time of 35.463, Patty Evans was 0.337 from first followed by last year’s open PAX champion Matt Roy who was 0.395 from first then John Evans 0.412 from first. Should be a fantastic battle for the open PAX championship this year!

Top Ladies PAX went to Roxanne Fertitta in her mini cooper with a time of 38.915. Shawnda Purdy was 1.485 behind first and Lia Jackman 5.744 from first.

Stock One:
Last year’s reigning champion for the class Alex Rademacher came out claiming first place in event one edging out David Jansen by 0.219 and Nick Clarke by 0.595. Looks like it could be a fight shaping up for the championship in this class.

Stock Two:
Dean Benz came out of his hiatus to claim first place in his new (to him) auto-x Miata. Debbie Kerswill borrowed Dean’s car and came in 0.298 behind. They were followed by Rich McSwiggin who was 1.144 from first.

Stock Three:
With one of the narrowest margins of victory Patty Evans managed to edge out last year’s Stock three champ Matt Roy by 0.058 with John Evans right on their heels behind Patty by 0.075. This could be an epic mini battle all year long!

Matt Roy attacks the course in his D-Street classed Mini

Roxanne Fertitta took home first in Stock three ladies with a time of 47.749.

Street Touring:
Another close battle here on opening weekend. Vic Chalk came out on top with Nathan Gabriel in his Miata just behind by 0.154, and Renee Chalkette at 0.794 behind Vic. Rumor has it that Vic may not make many events this year so the class could be up for grabs.

Street Prepared One:
Two year reigning champion in this class Joe Ysais came out ahead thanks to the street tire modifier as he snuck ahead of Bryan Nelson in his lotus by 0.339. Anthony Arreygue was just behind them in 3rd place.

Shawnda Purdy won Street Prepared One Ladies in an STi with a 46.651 time.

Street Prepared Two:
Last year’s class champion Ahren Renner sure didn’t look rusty at all in the season opener. He even let Nick Johnson borrow his car (and warm the tires) to drive in the class and Ahren showed him how it is done by throwing down a 42.841 raw, Nick was 0.919 in class behind Ahren. They were followed by Michael Johnson in 3rd.

Street Modified:
2013 Champion Kevin Weiss came out ahead in the class in his Subaru STi Frankenwagon, beating out Josh Brandenburg by 0.979, and Chris Dewey didn’t get any favors from the Street tire factor as he was in 3rd in the borrowed Godzilla (GTR) by 1.007.

Lia Jackman finished first in SM Ladies.

Scott Knauf’s Datsun 510 held together and posted top time in this class with Robert Morrison just behind by 0.534. John Arnold in his beautiful Corvair took home 3rd.

Vintage class cars from Scott Knauf (Datsun 510) and John Arnold (Corvair) on grid

Don Smith knocked the cob webs out after his first two runs improving by almost 2 seconds on his third run. He posted the top time in this class with a 45.270. Ian Kono was just behind by 0.150 followed by Bart Miller at 0.742 from first.

Classic American Muscle:
The new class of American muscle cars debuted for the first weekend of competition. Chris Miller was able to come back and take the class after he had a mechanical issue in the morning. Chris posted a 48.092 just sneaking in front of Chuck Tischler by 0.047. Chris Peterson ended in 3rd.

So many new drivers showed up to test the limits of their cars. Ken Ueno posted top raw time in the class but it was while not running for points. Chuck Cook in his Corvette took home the class win with a 44.838 time followed by Kameron Baker, then Reid Fletcher.

Thank you to all of the Chiefs, volunteers, instructors, team solo, and everyone for coming out to make this an awesome start to the solo season!
A Full House for our Tire Rack Street Survival

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Tire Rack Street Survival, in conjunction with the Reno Region of the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), held a Teen Survival Driving school at Reno/Stead Airport on March 22, 2014. Thirty students attended, and with both classroom and behind the wheel instruction, they discovered not only the limits of their cars but also what to do to safely regain control once that limit had been breached.

Tire Rack Street Survival Spring 2014 Class

Skid pad – both wet and dry – runs showed them how their cars handled at the limits of adhesion, and their in-car instructors taught them the correct way to recover without over-controlling. Next it was on to an emergency braking zone – once again both wet and dry – so they could feel the car’s brakes in panic stops, and receive instruction in coming to a controlled stop under maximum braking even while turning and on a wet surface.

After more classroom instruction it was back onto the track to run through a slalom course at speed; the object here was to show the students how a car would behave if driven through a series of quick left/right turns, while avoiding hitting any of the cones marking the course. The in-car instructors showed them how to keep the car under control without over-correcting the skids, and as the speeds went up so did the students confidence. Soon they were getting through the slalom at speed while keeping the car under complete control and missing the cones.

Then it was on to the most popular element: the emergency lane change. Going about 40 MPH they approached three different lanes, at the last second their instructor would call out which lane they had to take and they needed to quickly swerve into it to avoid running down a wall of cones. At first there were lots of squealing tires and knocked down cones, but as the students became more self-assured the speedy lane change become almost second nature to them, they learned to quickly avoid whatever would have been in front of them and maneuver the car into a different path without over-correcting or losing.

The final part of the day was combining all the elements into a mini-road course and letting the students take their parents for a few quick laps. By the end of the day there were smiling faces all around, happy parents who felt better about letting the kids hit the roads on their own, and 30 teen drivers who were better prepared for any situation they might face behind the wheel.

The class was able to use Reno-Stead Airport’s new facilities for the classroom with new tables and chairs and lots of open space and great views of the airport. Lunch was inside away from the windy weather and students and instructors were able to sit down and talk with parents a bit before starting up again.

Special thank you to the Reno-Stead Airport for letting us use their conference room and donating a water truck with driver all day to keep the course wet when needed. Thank you to the Santi Hut Company for their donation of the outside facilities, and to Reno Wrecking for donating the air bags for demonstrations.

This Tire Rack Street Survival event had a waiting list and Reno SCCA intends to host another event for these teens in a program this fall.
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