Polar Bear…and Then Some

Perfect weather (okay, okay, a little chilly) and a total of 60 cars, which is undoubtedly a record for this annual event. The drive, which traditionally serves as the first road event for SLTOA, dates to the formation of the club in 1982. As always, all drivers/cars were welcome, which resulted in a number of reps from the Gateway Miata Club, multiple MGs and even a ’66 Chevy Impala, quite impressive.

If you’re in the St Louis area and are looking for more drive opportunities, check the SLTOA calendar, available on the web page at www.sltoa.org. If you’re looking for something to do this coming weekend, on Sunday 20 March there are two drives scheduled: SLTOA’s St Patricks Run and the MG Club of St Louis’ annual Terry Fanning Rally. Check out the club web pages for details, including starting location and time,

Polar Bear!

The club’s annual Polar Bear Run, the traditional first drive of the season, is coming on Sunday 20 February, one week after Super Bowl. Meet at the BP station at Chesterfield Airport Road and Olive Street Road, west end of Chesterfield, at 11 AM. Grab a snack and some hot coffee prior to the 1130 departure on a 28-mile drive, winding up at the Big Chief Roadhouse for lunch. Y’all come!

Vets Run IX

The weather cooperated (yes, at this time of year, it is fair cool in the morning), lots of sunshine and a darn fine route developed by two members of SLTOA. We had 23 people/15 cars participate this year, launching from our starting point at Sunset Overlook, west of Columbia on Bluff Road, for a river crossing and drive through historic Ste Genevieve to Chaumette Winery.

The portion of the route from Sunset Overlook to the Modoc-Ste Genevieve Ferry was all in the flats and incorporated the standard stop at Fort De Chartres. Once we crossed the river and cleared downtown Ste Genevieve and I-55, the terrain picked up quite a bit…let’s just say the drive to the winery was energetic and quite scenic. Afterwards, the majority of the participants enjoyed a good meal and undoubtedly some vino.

Details on the drive will appear in the December issue of Exhaust Notes. Our thanks to all who came out and contributed to this year’s vet’s support organization, the Gary Sinise Foundation.

The traditional start, with piper Dave Massey playing the service hymns.

2021 Vets Run: Haze Gray Underway

Okay, okay, it’s a commercial ferry so it’s not exactly “haze gray” and the underway portion lasted about 10 minutes, with the crossing of the Mississippi from the Modoc, Illinois, landing over to Ste Genevieve, Missouri.

Anyway, if you’re inclined to join the St Louis Triumph Owners Association and reps from a number of other local car clubs this coming Sunday for the annual Vets Run, this is a view of one of the components of the route that you’ll get to enjoy. The second photo shows the end point: Chaumette Winery, down by Ste Genevieve.

We’re meeting at Sunset Overlook on Bluff Rd (west of Columbia and south of the “Red Roof” Shell station) at 10:30 AM, with a planned 11:00 AM departure. The drive should take about two or so hours and we’ll finish up with lunch at Chaumette. If you wish to join us, please do; you will need $15 in cash or check for the ferry crossing. Y’all come out!

Great Day for a Drive!

The weather cooperated (well, it was a mite chilly), we did see a good amount of color (particularly at the higher elevations in Pere Marquette State Park) and we had an excellent turnout for this year’s Fall Colours Drive. About 23 members and friends participated, driving four TR6s, one TR8, one Morgan, one MGB, one Rover, an MR2, Infiniti, Corvette, new Mini and two BMWs.

The route, designed once again by Ed Kaizer, was a lot of fun. The excursion started and finished in downtown Alton, with extended runs up and down the Mississippi River, the trip through PMSP and a stop at Eckert’s/Grafton Winery.

Next up for our intrepid TR crew? Our last driving event of the year, the annual Vet’s Run on Sunday, 14 November. Come on out and join us; monitor www.sltoa.org for the details.

Fall Colours Drive

BTW, if you’re in the St Louis/Metro East region and are looking for something to do on Saturday, 23 October, come on out for the annual SLTOA Fall Colours Drive. Join in with a bunch of Triumphs and an always entertaining mix of other cars/drivers for a run from Alton up to Pere Marquette State Park and back, with lunch at Mac’s in Alton. Show at the Taco Bell on the river at Alton (just west of the Clark Bridge) at 9:30, cars roll at 10 AM.

39th All British

Yee-haw, what a time. On Saturday 18 September, 184 British cars took the field at Creve Coeur Lake Park off MO 141 and everyone had a large time. As usual, incredible representation of British cars: MG, Triumph, Austin-Healey, Jaguar, Jensen-Healey, Rolls Royce (the ’48 boat tail roadster was a show-stopper…then again, so was the 1930 MG M-Series), Aston Martin, Rover, Mini (original and new), Land Rover, Sunbeam, Morgan (including a 3-wheeler…wild!) and a brace of Brit motorcycles. The show’s host/organizing group, the MG Club of St Louis, really did themselves proud, aided by near-perfect weather and enjoyed by huge crowds. We even had contingents from the Kansas City Triumph Club and British Sports Car Club of Louisville bring cars and participate.

More photos and information are available in the MG club newsletter (should get posted at https://www.stlouismgclub.com/ within a couple of weeks) and the SLTOA newsletter, which will hit the street this coming Sunday. If you find yourself in the vicinity of St Louis/Metro East third Saturday of September, 2022, by all means come out and join in the fun!

Well yes, we DID have a great time…

Made the drive to Stone Hill Winery in Hermann on 15 August and all who participated had a major large time. About 30 participated in close to 20 cars, including a bevy of TR6s (natch!), two Spitfires, one TR8 and one TR3, plus a couple of BMWs, one Toyota MR2 and a couple of other vehicles.

The last time the club made the run to Hermann we did pretty much the standard route: MO 94 south to Washington, then MO 100 west to the quaint town on the Missouri River. This time around one of our members came up with a much more entertaining route, nary a straight line between Wildwood and the winery, taking us through Labadie, close by Union and into Hermann via the back way, up from the south. The weather was perfect…okay, it did get a bit toasty in the cars BUT the drive was worth the two hours and we all enjoyed great food and the Stone Hill gift shop at the end of the trail.

As always, if you have an interesting vehicle (or even semi-interesting vehicle), feel free to join us for one of our driving events. Our big one for September is the All British Car & Cycle Show on Saturday the 18th at Creve Coeur Lake Park. We’re going to meet in advance of the big annual event for a quick breakfast, then drive as a group to the park. Keep an eye on www.sltoa.org for more info as the weekend approaches.