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Zone Rep Report May 2009

Sean CridlandIn the Zone by Sean Cridland

After the flurry of activity that February was for a new Zone Rep, March was a time for getting one’s feet back on the ground. No junkets off to exotic locales or rubbing shoulders with big-wigs, just getting down to looking through rule-books, getting acquainted with forms, and getting things set up for a busy summer ahead. I could take solace that Zone 9 wasn’t already in the thick of activity in the same way that Zone 12 is in Florida. The Zone Rep from that region is responsible for PCA Car corrals at both Sebring and Daytona endurance events, not to mention that she has 15 regions that are within (relative to the Southwest) easy driving distance. She says that she often visits four different regional activities in ONE weekend! Certainly a double-edged sword: it’s a huge time commitment, but also a lot of fun. Don’t we wish that we had a Daytona and a Sebring in our Zone!!!

Nonetheless, the ground is warming in Zone 9 and the buzz of activity is in the air. As many of you know, High Plains Raceway is open for business, adding to a nice array of useable tracks for the Colorado Regions. Miller Motorsports Park in Utah will be hosting the American Le Mans Series in May. Several regions have already had autocrosses (the Roadrunner Region barely stops for the Holidays!) and the first DE’s are coming up soon for RMR, AMR, IMR, and the Carrera Region.  With the advent of spring weather, several driving tours will be going out and there are more and more social events happening in the Zone.

As I write this report, I’m packing my bags to for a drive to Denver for two PCA meetings. The Parade Committee meeting will be held on April 18 at the Hyatt Regency Tech Center location. The PCA Executive Committee will be flying in for the occasion. That evening there will be a social/mixer for the locals and the national officers to meet and greet. I’m very much looking forward to that mixer, since it will be the first time that I’ll be meeting some of the members of Regions from outside of my own in my new capacity as Zone Rep. The following day, the EC will be having its spring meeting. As hosting Zone Rep, I’m responsible for taking minutes for that meeting. Then, if the weather is cooperative, I’m hoping to travel through Keystone to check out some of the venues. While it’s certainly not on the easy route home, I did live in Colorado for 30 years and I just want to see some of my old haunts again on the way home.

I’ll be home for just long enough to catch up on some work, then it’s off to the other end of the Zone for another event. The West Texas Region has been working closely with the RUF dealership in Dallas to bring some of their cars to Lubbock for a show of the cars and their capabilities. It’s a traditional event for WTR and perhaps their biggest event of the year, so I’ll be making an appearance there as a Zone dignitary and to meet more of the members of our large and geographically diverse Zone (and to see some of the great RUF cars!). Then it’s back home for awhile.

As some of you may already know, I’ve been busy this winter putting a roll-cage in my car. So I need to finish up that project and get the car drivable again. Though it’s a big step that many Porsche-owners agonize over, I decided to do it for a couple of reasons. One, I’m planning some suspension upgrades and I wanted to make sure I had a solid chassis foundation before doing so. There’s no use putting stiff suspension on a soft car.

Secondly, some of the events I’ve been doing have been what I would call “sustained high speed” events. I’ve already been using a harness bar and a neck-collar, but it occurred to me that being on the safer side is always a better option. And that brings me to a segue for this column.

Just become I’m doing it, don’t think that I’m one of those people who think that everyone should be doing what I’m doing. Just because I’m putting in a cage, I don’t expect that everyone should run out and do the same thing. However, with all the activity that the summer months will bring, I am hoping that safety will be on everyone’s mind. Whether your adding extra hardware to your car, buying a new helmet and HANS or just being more conscious about your, your family’s, and your friends’ safety during the tours and social events, it should be a topic on everyone’s mind as we get ready to embark on a summer of fun events.

So, as the safety talks for the autocrosses, DE’s, tours, and tech sessions are given, let’s all keep our ears and eyes open for one another and be sure that at the end of the year we’re all just as happy and safe as we are just before the season gets started. It’s part of what we do.

I look forward to seeing each of you at some event this summer.
Sean

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