Rendez-vous February 2000 – The double-oh year!

RSR Rendez-vous February 2000

The double-oh year:

 Did you spend New Years Eve watching CNN expecting to see all sorts of glitches?  Kind of a non-event wasn’t it?  After all the hype that led up to Y2K, I admit to being a little disappointed.   Those who feted at Chateau Vaudreuil  (location of the AGM three years ago) appreciated that the management turned off the power for a minute just after midnight.  Other than that, we were left wondering “Why 2K?”.  Even my Win 95 computer worked! Happy 1900 everyone!

 These are the dog days for Porsching.  Not much to report.  The Factory has pulled out of Le Mans again this year. That SUV seems to be taking a lot of their engineering talent.  I wonder just which parts of the truck are designed by the guys who normally assigned to Porsche race-cars?  The cup holders maybe?

I have been advised that my Boxster S will be built in March. That’s good news because it implies April-May delivery if things go normally.  I wouldn’t want a car with a build date of 23/12/99 for instance.  Couldn’t happen though since Porsche was not building Boxster S models in December and January for reasons not specified.

Ya bunch of yellow ….

 It seems that everyone in the Montreal area has decided that 2000 is the year of “speed yellow”. I thought I was the only lunatic who would risk driving a sports car in the one color assured to attract “les gendarmes”  more than Guards Red.  Turns out that there are already a half dozen on order.   Now that you know this, would the rest of you mind picking something different?   By the way, anyone wanting a 1996 C4S should get in line behind Raffaele Papalia and email me.

Cops Blitz Drunk Drivers:

 The weeks leading up to the holiday were interesting as  Police organized road blocks in random spots looking to keep drunks off the road.   A good idea but  I was not thrilled to have to wait 20 minutes to blow up the balloon.  I was astonished to see quite a few cars being hauled off on flat-beds through.  I’d have thought that people would be more restrained at the office parties.   Should this happen to you, here’s a few examples of what not say:

1. Can you hold my drink while I get my license?

2. Jeez, Officer, I didn’t realize my radar detector wasn’t plugged in.

3.  Aren’t you the guy from the Village People?

4. Hey, you must’ve been doin’ about 160 Kph to keep up with me. Your mini-van is faster than I thought.

5. Why don’t you bust people in the Tim Horton parking lot instead?

6. I thought you had to be in relatively good physical condition to be a police officer.

7. You’re not gonna check the trunk are you?

8. I pay your salary!

9. Gee, Officer! That’s terrific. The last officer also gave me a warning!

10. Do you know why you pulled me over? Okay, just so one of us does.

11. I was trying to keep up with traffic. Yes, I know there are no other cars around.  Galarneau is a least two miles ahead of me..

12. When the Officer says “Your eyes look red, have you been drinking?”

You probably shouldn’t respond with, “Officer, your eyes looked glazed, have you been eating donuts?”

The Best Answer:

How about the two guys in Georgia driving down Interstate 85 in a pickup.  It was hot so they were quenching their thirst with a few beers. As luck would have it, a cop pulls up and gives chase. Knowing that being pulled over with a beer in hand is a major no-no, the quick thinking driver yelled to his pal “quick, peel the label off your beer, ditch the bottle under the seat and stick the label on your forehead!”.

When the cop pulled them over a few minutes later he was confronted with two good-ole-boys sitting in the truck with Budweiser labels stuck to their foreheads. The cop asked “you boys been drinking?”. The answer .. “no officer we’s on the patch”. Compliments to Dave Rost for that one.

New Instructor Program:

Have you ever wondered about what it’s like to be a Rennsport instructor?  While some of the perks are pretty obvious, we don’t talk a whole lot about the work involved.   

 Since we have too few active instructors these days, the people wearing instructor shirts  get to spend an average of  six 30 minute run groups per day as a passenger.  Being a pasenger is hard work!  I had the pleasure of role playing with Tim Smith last fall. He was surprised at the amount of information which had to be processed mentally as I drove the car around (slowly) like a complete novice. 

Cataloguing  errors, minor and major, prioritizing them and remembering them (in order of priority) so that corrections can be applied before the offending corner,  is hard, stressful work.  If you have only one student per day it isn’t too bad.  If you have several (check rides and “can you help me with corner “x” count!) or even two students, it’s very taxing.   On the other hand it can be very rewarding.  When someone gets it right, the feeling is really great. 

The growth of Rennsport caught us by surprise.  Last year we were seriously undermanned.  We’re attacking this problem in a variety of ways. This will be a future article I suspect but here’s a capsule summary:

A two tier system. Level I (instructor) and Level II (senior instructor).  Level I will teach the lower run groups and Level II any group.

Uniform teaching, the same method will be taught by all within a run group.Additional emphasis on improving our teaching skills.Aggressive program to find and teach new instructors.

Incentives to bring back the less active senior people and hold on to those we have.

Off-season training for new and existing instructors.

 This is the fun part of my new job. While Peter and Rob do the hard stuff, I get to play Santa!  For the 2000 DEW season, qualified Tremblant instructors will get a $50 discount on event providing they – sign up and pay three weeks in advance and – they are willing to teach at that event.  This applies to all the DEW’s except September when instructors get a free day on the Friday.  In fact all Zone 1 instructors will be invited to that day.Instructor days will have more fun time since we’ll be doing any and all theoretical work off track and not in the third floor of the tower while forlornly gazing at the front straight.  Our off track sessions will be starting in March I hope and next month’s issue should have the details.

The 2000 Instructor Team:

On the back of this magazine I’m shown as Chief Instructor. I suppose that’s so but it doesn’t really provide the true picture.  I like to think that my mom gave birth to a kid with a few brain cells and the CI job is way too big for me to handle. 

We’ve broken the CI post down into more manageable parts.  Peter Korsos is the Chief Driving Instructor. His job is to improve driving skills.  Since great drivers do not always  make great teachers,   Rob Martin, Chief Teaching Instructor will help us communicate more effectively.   The team will expand as we find more talented volunteers to help out.    Me? I’ll take care of the paperwork and wash the dishes and stuff.  

Le Circuit Under New Ownership:

Lawrence Strohl is the new owner.  Track Chair Mike Delaney is watching things closely as you can imagine. Lawrence has also secured the Montreal Ferrari dealership. For those who don’t know, he is an avid car collector and his garage houses a number of exotics from Mercedes, Ferrari and  (natch)  Porsche. He treated us with his 959 at instructor day last year.  Maybe we can revive the tradition of inviting Ferrari owners to our DE weekends!  While I love Porsches, a few red Italian cars would liven things up a bit don’t you think?  We should be very thankful that the new owner is an avid car-nut as opposed to say, a golf fanatic!

We know a few details. The Jim Russell school will continue to run as usual. The track will be renovated.  Details are still sketchy while the engineers finish up their studies. It seems certain that we will have a new surface, and run-off areas for turns One, Seven and Namerow’s.

What we don’t know is when the work will be carried out. It could be before the season or after.  Mike has promised a report as soon as he knows.    I hope it isn’t in this issue! We’re all wondering if the renovations will bring back big time racing to Tremblant. Wouldn’t an American Le-Mans event be a treat?  That would take quite a bit of work though. The track is many years behind the times in terms of safety and amenities and bringing it up to present standards will be a major undertaking All hail Lawrence Strohl for saving us from a golf/condo developer!

Imagine fresh paving!  Tires lasting for two seasons?  I guess Louise can have that new dress after all.


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