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2013 Mid Winter Party Recap

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A bit of old man winter also attends the Mid Winter Party

While it may have been cold and snowy outside on Saturday, February 2nd it was warm and wonderful inside the Sewickley Car Store. Festivities started around 6:00 PM. The band was in full swing by 6:30. The music was terrific. Food & drink was first rate. The company was warm and inviting. I can’t think of a better place to be on a cold winter’s night. All for just a $10 donation.

KC Kowalyk and the Sewickley Car Store staff were gracious hosts. As a result of this evening the club has raised some much needed money for timing gear in support of the 2013 autocross series.

[singlepic id=629 w=320 h=240 float=right]While the festivities were being enjoyed by all there was serious work to be done. Ken & Louise Jeremiah received a special award recognizing their significant contributions to the club over the last 8 years.

In addition to the awards, Rob and Missy Hoffman have added a number of new items to the goody store. We now have a very cool selection of hats, jackets, hoodies, sweatshirts, golf shirts and long sleeve tee’s. They will be available at future ARPCA events as well as through the web site (details coming.)

Take a look through the gallery of pictures. If you missed this event you missed a good time. We look forward to see you at a future ARPCA social in 2013.

2013 Mid Winter Party Recap

[singlepic id=630 w=320 h=240 float=right]

A bit of old man winter also attends the Mid Winter Party

While it may have been cold and snowy outside on Saturday, February 2nd it was warm and wonderful inside the Sewickley Car Store. Festivities started around 6:00 PM. The band was in full swing by 6:30. The music was terrific. Food & drink was first rate. The company was warm and inviting. I can’t think of a better place to be on a cold winter’s night. All for just a $10 donation.

KC Kowalyk and the Sewickley Car Store staff were gracious hosts. As a result of this evening the club has raised some much needed money for timing gear in support of the 2013 autocross series.

[singlepic id=629 w=320 h=240 float=right]While the festivities were being enjoyed by all there was serious work to be done. Ken & Louise Jeremiah received a special award recognizing their significant contributions to the club over the last 8 years.

In addition to the awards, Rob and Missy Hoffman have added a number of new items to the goody store. We now have a very cool selection of hats, jackets, hoodies, sweatshirts, golf shirts and long sleeve tee’s. They will be available at future ARPCA events as well as through the web site (details coming.)

Take a look through the gallery of pictures. If you missed this event you missed a good time. We look forward to see you at a future ARPCA social in 2013.

2013 Mid Winter Party Recap

[singlepic id=630 w=320 h=240 float=right]

A bit of old man winter also attends the Mid Winter Party

While it may have been cold and snowy outside on Saturday, February 2nd it was warm and wonderful inside the Sewickley Car Store. Festivities started around 6:00 PM. The band was in full swing by 6:30. The music was terrific. Food & drink was first rate. The company was warm and inviting. I can’t think of a better place to be on a cold winter’s night. All for just a $10 donation.

KC Kowalyk and the Sewickley Car Store staff were gracious hosts. As a result of this evening the club has raised some much needed money for timing gear in support of the 2013 autocross series.

[singlepic id=629 w=320 h=240 float=right]While the festivities were being enjoyed by all there was serious work to be done. Ken & Louise Jeremiah received a special award recognizing their significant contributions to the club over the last 8 years.

In addition to the awards, Rob and Missy Hoffman have added a number of new items to the goody store. We now have a very cool selection of hats, jackets, hoodies, sweatshirts, golf shirts and long sleeve tee’s. They will be available at future ARPCA events as well as through the web site (details coming.)

Take a look through the gallery of pictures. If you missed this event you missed a good time. We look forward to see you at a future ARPCA social in 2013.

2013 24 hours of Daytona Recap

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A quick quiz…

  • Like Sun?  Check.
  • Like Warm Weather? Check.
  • Like Racing? Check
  • Want to get out of Pittsburgh in January? Check.
  • Where to go? – Daytona Beach of course…

Planning started back in August when Melinda and Chuck Clark suggested that a contingent of people come down to Daytona late January to enjoy some time in the sun and see one of the great races in the world – the 24 hours of Daytona.

What makes it one of the great races in the world?  Ah – I’m glad you asked.  For starters, it is on a grand track – a 3.5 mile configuration at the Daytona International Speedway where cars approach 200 miles an hour on the banked oval. Next, the race is for 24 hours – a real test of man and machine. Finally, it is the first major racing event of the year – held the last weekend in January in a very lovely location, Daytona Beach.

With a little bit of planning this could end up being a great mini-vacation.  And, you know what, it was.  Who all planned to show up from the ARPCA region? Well, I knew of the following: the Rabenecks, Pattersons, Seilers, Sulouff’s, Cores, Schindels, Neffs, Pigmans, Clarks (unfair – they have a winter place in Daytona Beach), Jim Gregory (double unfair – he was crewing for Wayne Taylor Racing or WTR for short) & Dan Franzetta.

Many of us decided to stay in the same place – the beautiful Oceanwalk.  Right on the beach, this resort hotel is only 10 minutes from the track.  The Rabeneck clan had a great 2 bedroom, 2 bath suite on the 22nd floor.  The balcony looked north.  This allowed for lovely views of the beach and the sunsets.

Day 1 – Friday

While the racing schedule was a bit light (the Ferrari Challenge cars and the Continental Tire series was racing later in the day) there was lots to explore.  We wandered through the garages and up to cars. This is truly the “whos-who” of race car drivers.  Drives from every major series wants to attend this event to win the coveted Rolex watch.  Montoya, Donohue, Luhr, Bourdais, Wilson, McNish, Rahal, Fittapaldi, Rockenfeller are just a few of the drivers who I saw walking through the pits on Friday. One of my favorite Porsche factory drivers,  Patrick Long, was giving an interview.  After the interview he actually walked over to where a group of us were standing and started to talk with us.  I’ve met him a number of times in the past (the first time back at Parade 2008 in Charlotte).  Such a pleasant and engaging person.   We talked about his new team for 2013 – CORE Autosport and his ride with Park Place Motorsports car at Daytona.

During the day I met up with the Pattersons.  We took Kate for a ride on the Ferris wheel.  It gives a great view to the overall track.  We watched the Continental Tire 2.5 hour race.  It was a great battle. Billy Johnson and Jack Roush Jr won in their Ford Mustang.  The Rum-Bum Racing Porsche came in 2nd.  The racing was tight and fun to watch.

Friday evening the Rabeneck’s, Seiler’s, Patterson’s, and Chuck Beck met for snacks and cocktails on the balcony and then grabbed a bite to eat at the Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Co. before turning in for the evening.

Day 2 – Saturday

While the 24 hour race doesn’t start until 3:30 PM the track is buzzing with activity early in the morning.  Jim Gregory was up and adam early helping to get the WTR  team ready.  The Rabeneck’s were moving a bit slower.  We got over to the track right after lunch and started to watch the pomp unfold below. Daytona as a racing venue can be a bit overwhelming.  There are two sets of grandstands – on the front straight between turns 4 and 1 and on the back straight between turns 2 and 3.  They hold over 165,000 people.  In some areas the track is banked at over 30 degrees in the the turn and 18 degrees at the start finish (see the picture of Rachel sitting next to the wall to get a sense of the banking.)

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We wandered down onto the track and onto the starting grid.  We watched the pomp as the cars lined up.  We saw over 200 drivers introduced.  All very cool.  We decided to watch the start from the front grandstands.  The race began promptly at 3:30 PM Saturday afternoon.  The Ganassi Racing Daytona Prototypes were out front.  In the GT class there were over 18 Porsche 911’s in the field.  Again our marque was well represented.

One of the most impressive aspects of the track is the song of the engines when they are traveling around the tri-oval.  The Daytona Prototypes run a big bore 8-cylinder engine.  They truly “roar.”  In the GT class the cars more “sing” then “roar.”  The sound of the 911 flat-six is unmistakable.  And this is all very LOUD.  Without ear protection it can become painful rather quickly.

The other thing that you will notice when you are in the grand stands near the track is the rush of the air.  After 30 cars pass by you at speeds between 170 and 195 MPH the amount of air that the bring along is amazing.  It can blow you over if you are not paying attention.

We then took the long walk down to turn 4 and through the tunnel to get reach the infield.   The number of people moving around was a bit overwhelming.  Abbi, my lovely bride who could care less about racing (she came along for the vacation and the friends) finally said “now I know what hell may be like – very noisy, very dusty, and very crowded…”)  That was the signal to head back to the quiet and serenity of Oceanwalk.

Day 3 – Sunday

I wanted to experience racing at night.  Well, maybe more correctly very early morning.  I decided to get to the track around 5:00 AM.  This is often the time when there is “the most action” that takes place.  Why?  People are tired and dawn is still a couple of hours away…   Well, it was.  There were 3 cautions that took place between 5:00 and 6:30.   Lots of action.  When I arrived at the track the sky was clear and the air crisp.  Cars were running hard.  For about 30 minutes I stood next to one of the engineers from a DP team that had a radar gun point back towards the start finish line.  He was recording the top speeds of the cars as they were passing start finish just before beginning to brake for the hard left turn into the infield. The GT cars were averaging between 160 – 170 MPH.  The DP cars were averaging between 190 – 200 MPH.  That is darn fast.

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Around 6:30 I noticed that it seemed to be getting “darker” vs. “lighter”.  When I looked back up towards the lights on the back of the grand stands I could see the fog begin to poor over the back railing and tumble down the stands towards the track.  Really a cool sight.  This brought out the 3rd yellow since I got to the track.  After watching the cars run in the fog for almost an hour I decided that I’d head back to the hotel and have breakfast with the family.  Take a look at the picture of the fog from our balcony.

A very nice diversion – Visiting the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse

Before heading back to the track we decided to do a bit of exploring around Daytona Beach.  We drove both north and south on Route A1A.  We ended up at the Lighthouse and Museum.  This place is really cool.  If you have an opportunity to visit – do! The museum has a fantastic display of  Fresnel Lenses.  The walk to the top of the lighthouse is really fun.  The view is great…  For more information, visit: http://ponceinlet.org/

 

Watching the battle to the finish

We got back to the track in time to see the last couple of hours of racing.  The battle at the front of the field was fierce.  The top 5 DP cars were still on the same lap – after 22 hours!  The Ganassi and WTR cars were trading the lead back and forth.  Really tight racing.  In the GT class there were a number of cars that were leading within the last hour.  The lead continued to shift between Audi, Ferrari, and Porsche.  In the end, Audi had a great 1, 2 finish.  The Porsche’s were 5 and 6.

Wrap-up

Take a look through the gallery of pictures. We were able to “check” all the things that can make an event really fun.  If you look closely in one of the pictures you will be able to see the PCA banner on the Clark motorhome that they designated “home base” for the ARPCA contingent.

Will we go back?  Yes.  I’m now thinking that I MUST attend a DE at Daytona International Speedway.  The question is no longer IF – but WHEN.

2013 DE Supporting Materials

Pitt Race Turn 7

Pitt Race Turn 7

This area includes links to information and materials that will help you prepare for DE. We create a new page for each year. The sections below provide general information as well as specific details for each of the driving events. The sections will be updated with more details before each of the events. The page is structured as follows:

  • General DE Forms and Links: This section provides links to key topics that are applicable to all DE’s. These range from the safety form you must have completed to on-track insurance options.
  • Information for specific DE’s: These sections will include information specific to a given drivers education event. This includes:
    • Participant Guide: This provides all of the “need to know” items about the specific track and how ARPCA manages the event at this track. Mandatory reading!
    • Lapping day Addendum: For specific events where we include a lapping day this document will outline the “need to know” items for those who are participating.
    • Track Map: Turn-by-Turn instructions for the track. Review this material to prepare yourself for the event.
    • Event Schedule: The specific schedule for each event
    • Run Group Assignments: Who is grouped into which run group
    • Garage Assignments: When garages are rented by ARPCA the the track this document identifies who is in each garage bay
  • Other “Interesting Materials” Supporting your on-track habit These materials are additional information about on-track driving.
Running in the Fog at Mid-Ohio

Running in the Fog at Mid-Ohio

 

General DE Forms and Links

  • Safety & Tech Inspection Form: 2013 Safety & Tech Form – Used for all DE events. Print this out and have it completed by an authorized technical facility before attending the event.
  • ARPCA DE Novice Primer: ARPCA DE Primer – Designed for those new to drivers education, this is an introduction to DE’s explaining what to expect and how to prepare for an event.
  • Article – Why not DE?: Why NOT do a Drivers Education [DE]? This is an article by one of our Chief Instructors, Ralph Gaudio, providing great insight into DE’s. Very worthwhile reading…
  • Driver Training Manual: Drivers Training Manual – Developed by Porsche Owners Club (POC), this is a VERY GOOD document. If this is your first DE (or you are looking to improve your driveing capabilities) take time to review!
  • Racing Equipment (including Helmets): Apex Performance – Apex Performance has been a strong sponsor to ARPCA. They have created a promocode ARPCA Members can use online to order or call and mention ARPCA on phone orders. You will save 10% on most items over $75 (and 10% on ALL helmets). If you order your helmet from Apex Performance you will also receive a free fleece lined helmet bag and cotton headsock and free ground shipping. This is a good deal all around!
  • HPDE Insurance: High Performance Drivers Eduction (HPDE) Insurance – offered by Lockton Affinity. Note, most standard insurance policies do not cover on-track incidents. Not all tracks are covered. Check with Lockton Affinity for specific availability.

2013 Watkins Glen Materials

2013 Pitt Race Materials

  • Participant Guide: Pitt Race Participant Guide Review this before attending the event. This includes key information including directions, hotel information, access times to the track, etc.
  • Track Map: Pitt Race Track Map Turn-by-Turn instructions for Pitt Race.
  • Event Schedule: Not yet developed
  • Run Group Assignments: Not yet developed
  • Garage Assignments: Not yet developed

2013 Mid-Ohio Materials

  • Participant Guide: Mid-Ohio Participant Guide Review this before attending the event. This includes key information including directions, hotel information, access times to the track, etc.
  • Track Map: Mid-Ohio Track Map Turn-by-Turn instructions for Mid-Ohio.
  • Event Schedule: Not yet developed
  • Run Group Assignments: Not yet developed
  • Garage Assignments: Not yet developed

Other Interesting Materials Supporting your on-track habit

  • Tire Database: Tire & Pressure DB – This is a great reference for information about tires – not specific to DE’s but expect that our DE participants will be most interested.
  • Wheel – Tire Size Calc: Wheel / Tire Calculator – This tool helps determine wheel / tire fitment. It is a bit technical but can be very helpful.
  • Ultimate Speed Secrets: High Performance Driving Book Book from Ross Bentley on performance driving.
  • Track Videos: Hooked on Driving Videos This “for profit” drivers education organization has published a very good set of videos. There are a number that you can review in preparation for your first DE – or – just to get the “driving juices” flowing.
  • Teen Driving School: Video – Example Car Control Clinic Experience – THis video provides a good perspective on what happens at a Car Control Clinic event. Take a quick view!
  • Misc Video: Video – Killed myself when I was Young A reminder that the laws of physics have not changed in the last 100 years (great footage and a good recording.)

Watch what it’s like to do a DE here:

2013 Business Meeting Schedule

Everybody is welcome to attend the monthly ARPCA Business Meeting… they’re pretty casual meetings with light snacks and beverages provided by the Club. Emphasis is upon the events and programs conducted by ARPCA and fresh inputs are always welcome. Please attend and discover for yourself how much fun a business meeting can be.

Most meetings are on the 2nd Thursday of a month and promptly start 7:30PM (unless noted otherwise).  There are times when we do move them because of “competing events” such as Valentine’s Day or Watkins Glen DE in 2013…

Date Location
Thursday, November 14 Drake & Beth Core’s Office – Window Systems, Inc.
Thursday, December 12 Zielinski Estate
Thursday, January 10 Sewickley Car Store – above the (shhh) BMW Showroom
Wednesday, February 13 Auto Palace Showroom
4627 Baum Blvd – Pgh, PA 15213
Thursday, March 14 Sewickley Car Store – above the (shhh) BMW Showroom
Thursday, April 11 Sewickley Car Store – above the (shhh) BMW Showroom
Wednesday, May 08 Sewickley Car Store – above the (shhh) BMW Showroom
Wednesday, June 12 Seiler Estate – 7:30PM Meeting
Thursday, July 11 Prez Patterson’s Royal Palace
Thursday, August 08 Zielinski Estate
Thursday, September 12 Auto Palace Porsche Showroom
Thursday, October 10 Charles & Melinda Clark Residence

The meeting minutes are published as part of the Rundschau.  See you at the next meeting!

Why NOT do a Drivers Education [DE]?

Ralph Gaudio with his GT3

Ralph Gaudio with his GT3

By Ralph Gaudio, Jr.
Co-Chief Instructor
ARPCA

If you’re reading this you are probably a member of the Porsche Club of America and its local chapter, the Allegheny region. It is also likely then you own a Porsche. The kind of Porsche does not matter. All Porsches are designed with the racetrack in mind. Few cars are able to transition from street to track without a single modification from factory specs but Porsches are built to do so. Any Porsche, any model, new or old, is able to demonstrate to its owner just what Ferdinand Porsche had in mind when the first 356 rolled off the line in Gmund, Austria over 60 years ago.

From those early 356s to the latest 911, the bloodline continues. Spirited street driving will provide a glimpse but the only way to truly experience all a Porsche has to offer (in the USA at least) is to drive on a racetrack. If you haven’t, then you’ve denied yourself the opportunity to appreciate what those owners who have already know. You can shine it, wine and dine it, and park it at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix but you ca not know its soul. You might think you do but believe me, you do not.

If you have a desire to take your Porsche to the track, but have been reluctant to act on the feeling, let me try to convince you it is not as difficult as you might imagine. Really, it is rather simple and safe. All it takes is willingness to invest some time and a little money. The actual time involved is a weekend and depending on DE selected it can be done for several hundred dollars. Considering the thrills you get, most people think it is money well spent.

Now desire, that is another matter, and if you do not have it that’s fine and there is no need to apologize. The Porsche garage is vast and accommodates many tastes.

The chartered intent of Porsche Club sponsored Driver Education was to create a venue where Porsche owners could safely experience the thrill of driving their STREET CARS at speed on a racetrack. That is still true today.

Note I use the term street car, a box stock street car, not a modified street car, to describe your Porsche.

Note, also, I do not use the term racing. Racing is a different venue altogether, though it is fair to say more than a few racers have come up through DE ranks.

So what does one need to do to experience a few track days with their beloved Porsche? Well, not too much, really. Oh, and by the way, one really does not need a Porsche to do a PCA sanctioned DE. ARPCA accepts nearly any marque, many of which are great cars in their own right.

If you have really wanted to take your Porsche on track but have been hesitant taking the plunge this is all you have to do:

  1. Select the ARPCA event you wish to attend by going to arpca.motorsportreg.com and follow prompts to register. (you can also link to events thru ARPCA.com)
  2. Download the ‘Tech Update and Safety Inspection’ forms from ARPCA.com and read them thoroughly.
  3. Take your car to an authorized inspection facility. Any Porsche dealer is so authorized and, as an example, Sewickley Car Store has extensive experience in track support. Your car must pass track safety inspection, which is no big deal for the Porschephile who normally lavishes attention on his or her car.
  4. Buy or borrow a helmet which meets the club’s Snell Special Application Rating for the season. A helmet may be purchased for less than $200.
  5. Clean your car in anxious anticipation of your first event (It is important to note here for you anal types who must have a spotless vehicle to be seen in public, you’ll be in good company. It is not unusual to see some driver’s washing their cars between on- track sessions).
  6. Show up at the track event you selected at the proper time and you are good to go.

That’s it!

You need do nothing else to attend a DE or track day and have a blast. Your car can be box-stock and, in reality, this is how you should begin. Bring your street Porsche to the track. It’s certainly how Porsche envisions it.

Remember now, everyone was once a novice. Don’t show up at the track and expect to set the track record because you won’t and your in-car instructor will be greatly distressed if you attempt it. So if you decide to come, plan to relax, learn and enjoy the track time and camaraderie.

It’s important to emphasize as you explore your cars capabilities, you will be exploring your own. Learning how to drive it will provide not only a sense of accomplishment but it is also loads of fun.

If you haven’t been to The Porsche Driving School, a Skip Barber school or equivalent, and you don’t autocross, it’s possible you don’t know how to drive your Porsche in the manner needed to fully appreciate it.

For example, some years ago I had a novice student who informed me he drove “very fast on the street” and was looking forward to doing the same on track with his late 80’s 930 Turbo. Indeed, he drove the car was very fast on straights but the driver frequently forgot to brake and turn at the end of straights despite my telling to do so in ever increasing decibels. He seemed to forget straights only serve to connect turns and driving turns is the key to speed. So, the car was fast but he was not because he’d never learned how to drive it properly. Throttle inputs, braking, steering and shifting are required for good car control and good car control is needed to go fast. It was a humbling experience for him but it was what he had to learn before he could reconstruct his driving techniques and be the better for it.

ARPCA’s Car Control Clinic (CCC) provides an excellent stand-alone introduction in how to drive your car and learn vehicle dynamics at the same time. It’s a great (though not required) pre-requisite for DE. As is AutoCross (AX) participation, which also teaches good car control skills.

Unique at ARPCA’s Pitt Race DE (Pittsburgh International Race Complex formerly BeaveRun), we actually include elements of our CCC in the novice experience. In my opinion, our Pitt Race DE is probably one of the best novice events available through PCA and scores of first time students agree with me.

At any of our DEs, you’ll be assigned to a novice class with drivers of similar experience. There’s no need to worry about being grouped with highly experienced drivers because run groups are stratified by level of experience. Also, your on-track sessions will be supplemented by classroom teaching but, trust me, you’ll have plenty of track time.

So if you really want to track your Porsche, it’s not difficult. If you remain unconvinced about doing a DE, let’s clear up a few other points:

It’s safe. You and your car are probably at greater risk driving on the street but that is not to say you don’t have to be careful on track. You’ll be one of 20 or so cars all going one way on a course with plenty of run-off. An in-car instructor will be with you and corner workers are there to guide you. Personally, I’d rather drive on track than on I-279 at rush hour.

Also, your auto insurance is not invalidated. This is Driver’s Education not a racing school. You do not need take my word for it though; feel free to check with your insurance company. [Editors note: Many insurance companies have recently changed their policies with on track events. Check with your specific carrier for any implications. There is track day insurance that is available for those individuals who want added security.]

You will not wear out your car by doing a few DEs. Porsches, especially, were built with the track in mind. Now if you get hooked by the experience and do frequent track days, it will shorten the life of some components like tires, brake pads and rotors. If you get to that point, however, you’ve already got the disease and are more than willing to feed the beast.

When and if you decide your life is incomplete without spending a significant portion of it on a racetrack, the necessary modifications to your car will come naturally as they become obvious. In essence, you’ll take a dual-purpose vehicle and convert it to a single purpose vehicle, one that may no longer be fun to drive to your local Starbucks but will be an even greater blast at Mid-Ohio.

The intent of this article has not been to create a new class of track junkies. You get to do that on your own if you’re so inclined.

The intent rather is to tell you by not tracking your Porsche, you’re missing most of the thrills it can provide. Gaining that experience is easier and safer than you might think.

Even if you only do a few DEs, you will come to appreciate your Porsche’s fine pedigree and you will begin to learn how to drive it as was intended. At the very least, the experience will make you a better street driver.

If you don’t believe me, come try it!

From the President December 2012

KJeremiahWell the time has finally arrived – my last “From the Driver’s Seat” article – about time!

We had our final social event of the year – our Porsche Prom. I want to thank Sandy and Bill Zielinski for coordinating things at Wildwood Country Club for us. While the occasion was smaller than usual (less than 40 members), I thought it was one of our better social events – good music and great food. I also want to thank Louise for her efforts in putting everything together including center pieces and dessert.

Eight years is a long time to be president of anything – especially a volunteer organization and I want to thank the “active club members” for making it a successful term. We’ve accomplished a great deal; thanks to folks stepping up with their ideas and participation.

We’ve had (after a minor hiccup) an extremely successful Driver’s Education program thanks to the leadership of Bruce Graham, Ralph Gaudio and the Pryors (both Larry and Larry, Jr). With their abilities we always had successful and safe DE’s. We’ve had great participation and most events were sold out. I also want to recognize Dale Rabeneck for implementing our new on-line registration feature (which we now use for most of our activities.)  This program has made it much easier for our DE and social chairs to plan and organize our events.  Because of their success, we’ve managed to implement other functions.

I also want to thank John Schrenker for managing the Car Control Clinic. John suggested this program and we’ve had terrific results and attendance. Although designed for new drivers, many new Porsche owners and spouses took advantage of these events to obtain an “inkling” of what Porsche performance is all about. I never saw anyone leave one of our CCC’s without a smile on their face (except for ML and Abbi – long story).

We also had a come back this year for our Autocross program. Rob Hoffman and Scott Mores asked if we could have an Autocross event. Even though they had never participated in an Autocross, they quickly got up to speed and we ended up having three events and they even made money – great job.
Iron Jack Purvis created our new rally events. I’m surprised we don’t have better attendance (usually 12 – 20 Porsches) because with the assistance of Frank Buniciky they are really well organized and a great deal of fun.

We’ve kind of been up and down with our tours, however the ones we had were again a lot of fun and I want to thank Mike Ferraro for his work. We now have a new “Tourmeister” in Jason Monyok and I’m sure these events will once again be a great success – what’s better than driving your Porsche though great country and having lunch with interesting people.

All of our events were and are on our website thanks to Dale Rabeneck and his team of assistants. I hope our members become more active in utilizing this up-to-date quality communication tool. Also thanks to Nancy Lowe and now the team of Iron Jack, Scott Ishler, Rob Hoffman and Paul Nickoloff, our region has one of the best newsletters in PCA. The one time we entered our newsletter in the PCA competition, we took third place. I’m hoping we will enter in 2013 and I’m sure we’ll do even better.

Thanks to Earl Seiler, we’ve created a new communication vehicle with our email blasts. Our club is notorious for waiting until the last minute to register for our activities and our email blasts have really helped in encouraging our folks to register earlier assisting event chair(s).

Our Wine and Shines (and Speed and Sushi) have become extremely popular and I want to again thank those who chaired the various events. I mean what’s better than driving your Porsche somewhere for refreshments and meeting great people.

Our Porsche Project for Patriots (P-3) has been one of our proudest achievements. Suzanne Carlin and George Patterson came up with this idea (they both had relatives serving in Iraq and Afghanistan and so we created various venues to send gifts, usually phone cards, to our troops in these conflicts). With the generous support of our members, we have contributed thousands of dollars and have been rewarded with numerous notes of thanks as well as recognition from top military officers. I believe this is one of the greatest things we do and hope we will continue to receive the support from our members.

Finally, I want to thank all of our members who supported our most attended events – the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. Louise and I chaired these events after taking over from Linda and Clark Hamerly (which was a difficult act to follow). We continued to expand our presence at the PVGP, and usually had the largest attendance for any car club. In 2011, with Mark Hanson leading our efforts, we blew the place up with a record 502 Porsches and contributing $73,500 to the PVGP charities – this is still a record and probably will be for a long time. We had probably fifty club members who assisted with our efforts and had Porsches from twelve states and Canada. What a great team effort and a demonstration of how strong our club is in putting together a major effort.

I want to thank all those individuals who were officers and chairs during my term. We could not have accomplished so much without your dedication and time. A terrific group of people – thanks do much.

My tenure as president, thanks to many of you, was an enjoyable experience. I know that with George Patterson taking over the driver’s seat that our club will continue to grow and prosper. And I’m sure that with George’s creativeness and dedication, we will see some great venues and activities in the future.

Oh, please send your suggestions, ideas and comments — to George.

P3 Update


Update by Michael Coyne

The Porsche Projects for Patriots (“P3”) program continues to move forward, and we have just made new donations of phone time on behalf of the club to troops serving our country overseas. The most recent donations went to 4 U.S. Army bases in Afghanistan where Soldiers of the 264th Engineer Route Clearance Company are stationed. We were connected to this particular group through ARPCA club member David Hergenroeder.

The Soldiers in the Clearing Company do incredibly dangerous work under very difficult conditions. Through the P3 program, we are able to offer a small token of our thanks to these men and women deserve an easy way to get in touch with loved ones back home, especially over the holiday season.

The following is a the response that we received from 1LT Jeff St. Gelais thanking the ARPCA:

264th EN CC, RCP 47

(click to enlarge)

Mr. Coyne,

Thank you so much for your kind gesture. The PIN Codes have been given out to 10 of the soldiers in my Platoon. As you can see in the attached picture, all were very excited to receive the codes. On behalf of my platoon, I want to express our appreciation for the gifts that you have sent. These codes will go a long way to ensure that soldiers are able to speak to their families during the holiday season and that in turn goes a long way in keeping morale at a high level.

Thank you again for your kindness.

Very Respectfully,

1LT Jeff St. Gelais
264th EN CC, RCP 47
Platoon Leader

I will continue to post updates on the P3 program in the newsletter and on the website, with information on recipients, events, and new ideas for the program.

If you have a friend or family member currently serving in the Armed Forces overseas and you would like us to consider them for the P3 program, please contact me via email or at the number below.
Please help us continue to grow this important program – thanks in advance for your help!
Please contact me at michael.coyne11@yahoo.com or (724) 601-7848 for more information.