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Zone Rep Report September 2016

Liz ShawIn the Zone by Liz Shaw

Hello Zone 9ers,

During the last few days of July, I attended Alpine Mountain Region’s “Rocky Mountain High Way” and had a great time. Chris and Kathleen Lennon organized a spectacular long weekend of events and they were rewarded with participation from 18 different states. In many ways, it felt like a mini-Parade, as many people knew each other from Parades that they had attended, and the feeling of camaraderie was strong.

On Friday morning, PCA Vice-president, Tom Gorsuch, and I headed to a driver training center (Master Drive) where the Gimmickhana was being held. I’ve always wanted to do one of these events and I was glad to pair up with Tom. There were 9 cars and the event was divided into 3 exercises. The first one had us on a couple of short roads with a connecting piece of pavement. There was a slalom on each of the roads and then a couple of gates on the connecting road. Easy, huh. Well, the challenge was to have the driver only be in control of the gas, brake and clutch (unless the car didn’t have one) and the passenger was in control of the steering. We got a practice lap and then 2 timed laps and Tom and I had the fastest time. All my years of autocrossing paid off!

The next exercise had the driver steer the car around in a circle, which was marked off in quadrants. The passenger had to hold onto the end of a thin rope, which was connected to a tall cone in the middle of the circle. Halfway down the length of the rope was a carabiner. The idea was for the passenger to hold the rope and carabiner off the ground and every quadrant that was cleared counted as one point. Tom and I came in 3rd overall.

The last exercise was the most challenging, as it had the driver wearing an eye mask and the passenger had to give directions on the course. We were back at the parallel road course and this time, we had to drive a short distance, then turn 90o onto a concrete pad. Then we had to back up and proceed backwards down the road and into an open box, marked by plastic poles. After stopping, we had to head toward the sweeper and then into the slalom. Tom and I did well, except for having to fix a navigator mistake when we exited the concrete pad. Yes, Tom fully acknowledged that the “blind” driver had to correct him on this!

All in all, a very fun event and we were rewarded with a trophy for placing Second overall.

After washing my car (with Tom’s help), I took it to the Show & Shine.

On Saturday, I joined about 20 other cars for a day-long tour to the ghost town of St. Elmo, off County Rd. 162. We had a lunch stop in Salida and then made our way to the town full of tourists (I didn’t see any ghosts). The trip back was memorable for one thing – a contact encounter with a young deer, which resulted in a dented front fender and a scratched hood. The animal came out of nowhere and the second I hit the brakes, he hit my car. I saw him hop away, not putting weight on his right hind leg so hopefully, he wasn’t hurt too badly.

The Final Banquet that night included the MC (Chris Lennon) and a few others poking fun at me: Liz has provided some fresh venison for us, Liz won the John Deere award, etc. All in fun! My Cayman is in the shop as of this writing and hopefully it’ll be fixed soon.


Coming up for me in the next several weeks are Werks Reunion, Monterey Motorsports Reunion, and Club Races at High Plains Raceway and Utah Motorsports Park (Miller).   

See you around the Zone!

Liz Shaw, Zone 9 Rep

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