RSR Rendez-vous May 2000
An Exciting Summer:
As Mike Delaney wrote last month, we are going to have a
very different program this year. It’ll be fun to learn
new tracks like Sanair and Ste-Eustache, not to mention the
newly renovated Mosport.
Learning different circuits makes everyone a better driver.
Probably like skiing, going to different mountains seems to
improve skills by some magical process I’ve never figured
Sanair (to the south of Montreal off highway 15) is
a relatively short track compared to Tremblant. It’s very
technical and the odd concrete wall adds zest.
Ste Eustache (Northwest of Montreal) is also a smaller track
and like Sanair it gives car and driver a real workout.
Turns come at you quickly with hardly a moment to catch
The good news is that neither track will eat our tires the
way Tremblant does. Brake pads are another matter of course
and I bet Mr. Delaney goes back to twenty minute sessions
to give us a chance to cool things down.
I’m pretty familiar with Ste-Eustache (Circuit Deux
Montagnes is the official name I think) as on Monday
evenings during the summer, quite a few Rennsport Trackies
gather there to test setups and generally have fun. Unlike
DE, we have to pay by the minute, twenty bucks, twenty
minutes. DE is a better deal financially.
There is a real benefit to Ste Eustache though, it has
real bathrooms and a restaurant. The place is jam packed
with stock car fans most weekends watching huge cars race
nose to tail and door to door around a 1/4 mile oval.
There will be special drivers meeting for Ste Eustache. The
proper line coming off the north end of the track will take
you right across the area where dragsters do burn outs.
You’ll see the thick black patches of rubber. In the
wet, they are a lot like ice and we avoid ’em. One other
warning, is that loud cars will be black flagged. The
management has had problems with folks who built homes
kinda near the track. Loud cars annoy them and to avoid
irritating them more, the track uses a dB level meter. My
car with the Fabiani Supercup exhaust does not pass even
with the muffler cores installed. Ron Whitehead beware
There’ll be an Autocross at PMG Blainville ground school
weekend and another on the Ste Eustache DE weekend. By the
way, to get to PMG Blainville follow Mike Delaney’s
directions but it will help you to know that when you exit
the Laurentian Autoroute (exit 25) follow the main road
heading East and cross Route 117 which is the main North
Because I know how to get to PMG, Mike’s instructions
confused me. My fault, his way is best. I didn’t realize
that you can get there more easily by NOT turning left onto
117. This will spoil my fun though. It is sooooh enjoyable
navigating a Porsche through heavy traffic, rich in
minivans and suv’s trying to find the teensey little PMG
sign on 117. I eventually see it after three tries. This
give me lots of opportunities to wait at interminable
traffic lights to make a left turn onto some street, make a
U turn and wait at the same forever-long light to get going
in the opposite direction. Michael’s shortcut avoids all
that. Sad huh?
I get “conefused” at Autocross. Hint, it really
pays to volunteer for gatekeeper duty before your runs.
After you’ve spent a half hour watching everyone else get
lost, you’ll have no problem “seeing” the layout and you’ll
know which way to turn. Delaney may take pity on us (me!)
and trace a chalk line showing the route.
Forty Centimeters of Snow! Are you guilty too?
OK, as I write this, about a foot and a half of snow is
piling up outside the house. Earlier this week we had days
of teeming rain. Why this freak of nature you ask? Well,
Louise and I did our part. We picked up our 911’s from
Strasse after their spring inspections. Worse, the cars were
polished and detailled. Some years ago I figured out that
I “didn’t need no stinkin lawn sprinkler” system. Wash a
Porsche and it rains within 12 hours.
What’s the penalty for taking two freshly polished
Porsches out of winter hibernation? We figure maybe two
inches of snow. To achieve 18 inches, we’re positive we
had help. How many of you picked last weekend or the week
of April 3rd to bring out your babies? Maybe we should
test this theory, if we all put them away again, will
the week of April 17th be 75 degrees and sunny? It’s
probably not worth the test, because I have a sneaking
feeling that a bunch of lawyers and doctors contributed to
our misery by rolling out their Harleys.
Rennsport is grooming a whole new crop of Instructors to
keep up with our growth. Did I mention that Auto Strasse
has gifted us with another 58 new members just recently?
John Raymond buys them memberships and we give them a free
DE weekend. Everybody wins!
Our Instructor Training program (that’s the new guys as
well as the retreads like me) is made a lot easier this
year. Rob Martin (he’s the one who slaps) and Marc
Belanger (who doesn’t) have written a comprehensive driving
and teaching manual. This is a serious piece of work. I
can only speculate about how many hundreds of man-hours
went into it. We’ll be using it as the cornerstone of our
program starting now.
You’ll be seeing part of it at Groundschool (about the time
you get this). Mike Delaney is using segments for the
Theory session and, you’ll get to practice it in the
afternoon on the skidpads. By the way, this year we
promise to run the sessions in parallel with no waiting.
Last year we were caught off guard by the very high
attendance. We’ll be using the big (really big) pad this
year and there’s room to safely run multiple exercises in
Chris Kirby Comes Home:
If you read the “Who’s Who” part of Auspuff (yeah sure)
you’ll have noticed that Chris is on the board and
responsible for driving events. Recent members may ask
“Who’s Chris Kirby?”. He’s one of the founders of
Rennsport and for many years, a prime “mover and
shaker” at Zone One where he is among other things, Chief
Since “the Zone” accounts for a large percentage of PCA
members in North America (maybe the largest single
percentage) it made sense that Chris should devote his
time to it. That’s why you didn’t see such much of him in
Rennsport. The good news is that Chris is active in our
Region again, and this is a “very good thing”.
This is going to be a weird time for me. I’m taking my
company public; something called an IPO which stands for
“Intensely Painful Operation”. The process is
complicated and demands completion of major projects
with ridiculous time tables. The whole accompanied by
stupendous legal and accounting fees. These, designed to
keep the underwriters out of jail and (I hope) the
principals of the company as well.
All this to say that as of now, things are really busy and
will remain this way for a couple of months. I’ll try and
keep up with RSR Rendezvous, but if I have to miss the odd
one, I apologize and hope you’ll bear with me.