Club Racing News

Oak Tree

VIR Oak Tree Down!

Alton, VA, July 2, 2013 – There is no easy way to say this – The Oak Tree is down. The iconic landmark that has come to symbolize VIRginia International Raceway has fallen, broken at the base.

“We are in shock and mourning,” said track owner Connie Nyholm. “We’re too busy right now trying to get the racetrack cleared of debris.  We are grateful no one was at the corner station or on track when she fell and that there is no damage to the track surface. Tomorrow we’ll begin to get our arms around what this really means, but I can tell you that it means more than any of us want to think about today.”

The massive oak stood sentinel at the south end of the racetrack, looking out from the highest point on the property at the sprawling facility and its 3.27 miles of serpentine asphalt that has come to be regarded as the most challenging in North America, if not the world.

Its branches shaded the apex of the legendary Oak Tree Turn, looking down on the likes of Roger Penske, Walt Hansgen, Tom Kristensen and Richard Petty as well as a host of race drivers from the brilliant to the not so.

“I can tell you this,” Nyholm said, “The Oak Tree will live on in our minds and hearts, and we will give it an appropriate send-off. Please email your thoughts and suggestions to oaktree@VIRnow.com for proper ways to honor this old friend.”

Oak Tree

You don't want to miss it!

The Double MARRS / Double SARRC is always a great time and great races. Join us this weekend at VIR and you won't be disappointed. The Double Double means more race cars and more racing excitement. Sign up now at motorsportreg.com

Two exciting days of racing along with the usual amenities - breakfast and lunch both days ( including a hot lunch on Sunday ) and a Saturday night social. Schedule and supps can be found here.

Remember to watch for the signs directing you to the new registration location as you enter the track. Registration is at the OLD Synergy building in the VIR Raceplex. You'll need to turn right before you get to the guard gate.

Flag meeting at 7:35 at the north flag shack ( the usual place ) Green course at 8:20.

Sincerely,
Your award winning NC Region Flag Chiefs
North Carolina Region SCCA

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The SARRC/MARRS Challenge

Double Double at VIR

May 11th & 12th, 2013

It’s almost time for the last race in our spring flurry, the Double SARRC/Double MARRS is this weekend!

You don’t want to miss it!

The Double MARRS / Double SARRC is always a great time and great races. Join us this weekend at VIR and you won’t be disappointed. The Double Double means more race cars and more racing excitement. Sign up now at motorsportreg.com

Two exciting days of racing along with the usual amenities – breakfast and lunch both days ( including a hot lunch on Sunday ) and a Saturday night social. Schedule and supps can be found here.

Remember to watch for the signs directing you to the new registration location as you enter the track. Registration is at the OLD Synergy building in the VIR Raceplex. You’ll need to turn right before you get to the guard gate.

Flag meeting at 7:35 at the north flag shack ( the usual place ) Green course at 8:20.

Sincerely,
Your award winning NC Region Flag Chiefs
North Carolina Region SCCA

 

The following link will provide information from our website and rental contract and offers more information on the fuel available at VIR. http://virnow.com/about-vir/fuel/

As always, if you have any questions or comments about this change, please feel free to give us a call.

Sincerely,

Kerrigan Smith
Director of Track Operations

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Attention Racers: Announcement from VIR about fuel

The following announcement was sent out via email by VIR regarding fuel available at the track. For additional information, click the link in the story or write to info@virnow.com.

ANNOUNCEMENT

January 31, 2013

In an effort to better serve our Track Renters, Participants and VIR Club Members, we have made the decision to replace the 112-octane fuel in the North Paddock with 98-octane (260 GTX).  This is an unleaded fuel which is ethanol-free and for off-road and racing applications only.

We hope this switch will better serve our customers’ needs and make it more convenient for them by eliminating or reducing the need to bring drums of fuel to the track.  Of course, VIR will not enforce any restrictions against fuel grades we do not carry.

The following link will provide information from our website and rental contract and offers more information on the fuel available at VIR. http://virnow.com/about-vir/fuel/

As always, if you have any questions or comments about this change, please feel free to give us a call.

Sincerely,

Kerrigan Smith
Director of Track Operations

 

13 Hour Videos & Pics

Check out these videos from the 13 Hour “Charge of the Headlight Brigade…

First is this video of Pam Thompson splitting the grid that Eric Danielsen posted on You Tube,
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mqGgtUmP9w&feature=g-all-lik

Justin Deffenbaugh posted this time lapsed video of the pits at the 13 Hour
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EE56cPKJ2ZI#!

Also, here’s a link to some pics that Pete Romanowski sent. That’s one awesome sunset over Turn 17 from the Start stand! Click here.

Great work guys! Thanks!

Sunset at VIR, October 27, 2012. 13 Hour Charge of the Headlight Brigade. (by Pete Romanowski)

 

 

13 Hour Tailgate Party was a Huge Success…and the Race Wasn’t Bad Either!

ALTON, VA – (NCRSCCA) –Wow! The Region’s Thirteen-hour Tailgate Party and Cooking Contest was an unqualified success!  There were participants from all over – New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Georgia, Texas, and even the Netherlands!  Yes, our party at VIR was a must-attend stopover on the international scene. And the food was fabulous!  I was on Station 17 all day with RE Rex Deffenbaugh and various volunteers from the racing teams. Racing Teams?  Oh yeah, I need to mention the “Charge of the Headlight Brigade” enduro we had as entertainment.  That made this the best tailgate party ever!

But back to the food!  John Uftring joined Rex and me in the afternoon.  He’d have been there sooner but he wound up in the ER for about 6 hours waiting for his thumb to be stitched up (OK, they actually super-glued it) after he sliced it open preparing food for our dinner the night before.  But that didn’t stop John.  He unloaded a complete camp kitchen from out of the back of his 3-series BMW (no kidding!) and brewed us gourmet coffee for starters.  Then it was on to the incredible Chicken Cacciatore he prepared, right out of the pages of Joy of Cooking. But I’ll bet Irma Rombauer never prepared it by the glow of a camp lantern and passing headlights.  John, or “Chef Gaston” as we have come to think of him, served his chicken in wine sauce over rope pasta, with fresh green beans and new potatoes.  For dessert, he provided bread pudding in a whiskey-flavored sauce. All the alcohol was long gone by the time dinner was served, of course, but the flavors alone were intoxicating!  For this feast, the food judges awarded John the “Most Excellent Chef” trophy.

Other accomplished chefs also won awards. Brian Huff was awarded “Extraordinary Chef” for his extraordinary grilled pork, mac & cheese, and homemade salsa for chips. I heard that his pineapple upside down cake, an apple fritter type, was to die for.  But he wasn’t alone.  Justin Deffenbaugh’s smorgasbord of ribs, chicken, potatoes and onions, and pizza earned him the title of “Awesome Chef.”  It was well-deserved!

In addition there was a costume contest Saturday morning.  This event was a costume party after all. Most people came dressed as SCCA flag marshals in a variety of white outwear, but there were a few notable exceptions, and not just international course marshal Arjen Bleeker in his signal orange jumpsuit, who came from the Netherlands to work both the Petit Le Mans before, and the ARRC after, our event.  I rather liked Brian Huff’s roast Thanksgiving turkey hat; but the most amusing costume was probably Flag Chief Eric Danielson’s “flasher in a trench coat”, though the only thing he flashed was his orange jumpsuit from the 24 Heures du Mans. Assistant Flag Chief Heather Clark was also in costume, dressed from head-to-toes as a large (but cute) bumble bee, which seemed quite appropriate given her propensity to flit about all day solving problems.

Kudos to them both for a well-run party! But they didn’t win the awards. “Most Excellent Costume” went to Bria Gardner for her skeleton outfit; Jamie Gardner won “Coolest Costume” for her interpretation of Cleopatra; and Anna Crissman, Chief of Timing and Scoring, stole the show as a giant yellow banana.  She earned “Funniest Costume”, and probably a new nickname, for that one!

Did I mention the race?  I said we had a race for entertainment. When you report on a Superbowl party, you have to mention the game at some point, so I guess I should report on the race a bit as well.  Some 51 cars signed up to see who could cover the most laps of VIR after thirteen hours.  If you needed practice being a blue flagger, this was the race to attend.  The early lead was taken by the Superlite Coupe sports racer of Ryan Ellis’ team, which drove around the rest of the field like they were tied to a post.  The Porsche Cayman driven by Jack Baldwin and Buz McCall was almost as fast, and between the two of them and a plethora of BMWs, the blue flag was waving at nearly every corner for the first three hours.

But, eventually the Sports Racer developed mechanical problems and the Cayman slowed, and by the 5th hour it was the Johnstone Supply Racing M3 of Harold Petit in the lead, which was no surprise to followers of this race from previous years.  He was followed closely by another BMW, the 328 of James Clay’s team, and the yellow Lotus Exige of local favorite Jim Taggart of Cary, North Carolina. But after nine hours the leader had hit the tires at station 14.  Then the 328 had mechanical issues, and finally the Lotus got into an altercation with another car.  By the 11th hour, the remaining BMW 1 series of Mitchum Motorsports was in the lead, followed closely by the MX-5 fielded by the Grand-Am team Freedom Motorsports.

These were 2 powerhouse teams! The Freedom Autosports MX-5 was closely allied with Long Road Racing, which had 2 other Mazda Miatas entered and supplied crew assistance for Taggart’s Lotus. The number 25 MX-5 in second place was piloted by brothers Tom and Chris Long. Tom is a regular Grand-Am driver for the Freedom team, but Chris is an engineer for another outfit and his first time in the seat was when he took over for Tom after the first 40 minutes of the race!  What a drive!  It should be noted too, that Mitchum Motorsports also had 4 cars in the race, 2 BMWs and two Mazda Miatas.  One of the Bimmers and one of the Miata’s DNF’d, but the number 60 BMW was in the lead with 2 hours to go.

That’s when things got really interesting.  In the darkness, by the 12th hour, the MX-5 got by the BMW by dint of superior driving and pit work, and with some more very exacting driving and perseverance, they manage to stay there, finishing a bare half a lap ahead.  How else could an underpowered MX-5 beat a BMW 1-series after 324 laps from daylight into dark? Congratulations to local boys Tom and Chris Long, and to all the class winners as well. What a race!  And what a tailgate party!  You shoulda been there! (13 Hour results here)

Photo courtesy of Sput Dodge

Remembering David Page

ALTON, VA – (NCRSCCA) – At the Goblin’s Go event at VIR , the volunteers had a small memorial for our departed friend  David “Santa” Page who left us in 2011.  His wife Jan had donated David’s worker gear to us and we held a raffle for it. Richard Mosely won David’s orange vest and a pair of orange gloves; Jean Quick walked away with his white zippered sweatshirt, bucket hat, and whistle, Chris Sigmon won David’s MG shop apron, work gloves, and green vest; and Grid Chief Johnny Dunbar got the grand prize, David’s Radio Shack scanner.  And Race Chair/Flag Chief Eric Danielsen got a new pair of orange gloves to replace the ones he had given away to a new volunteer that morning.  We cheered David’s memory and thanked him posthumously for the stuff.  We miss you David!

Above (left to right), David Page, Canadian flagger Arlene Chase, Mark Biamonte and David Turner, the “Senna corner” 2A crew at the 2007 Canadian F1 Grand Prix.

David Page

David in his beloved Sprite.

Tarheel Cup Pro Series

NCR Starts New Series–Tarheel Cup Pro Series (TCPS)

Tarheel Cup Pro SeriesRALEIGH, NC – (NCR-SCCA) – New series announced for 2012:  Tarheel Cup Pro Series (TCPS)

Drivers take note, no matter what class you currently run, you may be eligible to participate in a new series being offered at the NCR’s March Memories event on March 10-11.  See these rules for more specific information and feel free to contact us for more details.

Tarheel Cup Pro Series 2012 Rules (PDF)

 

 

LIVE TIMING for the Bob Huff Memorial Charge of The Headlight Brigade – 13hr Enduro!

RALEIGH, NC (NCR-SCCA) – NCR SCCA will have live timing available for the 13hr Enduro at VIR this year. Please visit http://livetiming.net/scca/ncr/

This site can be accessed by any person on the internet on most any device (smart phones, ipods, ipads, laptops, etc)

Dave Page

Checkered Flag – Dave Page

Dave Page

Very sad news. I received the following email from Vicki Wilson on Saturday, Aug 13:

Hello SCCA folks,
This is Vicki Wilson, former flagging and communications worker. Most of you know Dave Page who also flagged for many years. Dave passed away this morning at Duke Med Center following a brief illness. Funeral arrangements are listed below and I am trying to help the family notify his many friends. I also sent an announcement to James Shanks asking him to notify folks. I have been in contact with Dwight and Chuck.

Thank you for spreading the word.

Vicki

vwilson5@triad.rr.com

The Funeral/Memorial Service will be held on  Saturday, August 20, 2011 at 3:00 p.m.

St. Luke’s Episcopal
1737 Hillandale Road
Durham, NC 27705

With a memorial reception following in Johnson Hall at St. Luke’s

If you can attend, it would be a great way to let Dave’s family see how well liked he was and how much he meant to us. If you can’t make it and would like to send a card, Dave is survived by his wife Jan,

4509 Cheshire Ct
Durham, NC  27705

Also received, was this note from Dave’s daughter:

Hi, this is David and Jan’s daughter.
An obituary will be in the News and Observer and the Herald Sun on Tuesday. We have stated that if one wishes to make a contribution in Dad’s name, to please do so to a charity of their choice.

Thank you,
Susanne Conway

NCR Returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway

CHARLOTTE, NC (NCR & CCR SCCA) – On Saturday, August 20, 2011 & Sunday, August 21, 2011, Central Carolina (CCR) & North Carolina (NCR) SCCA Regions present “Daylight Into Dark”, a double SARRC/CCPS race at Charlotte Motor Speedway! Click here for more info and registration links.