The Crossings is located in Webster Groves at 35 North Gore
News flash: For those of you who only read the first two sentences of my stimulating column, our Bevo Mill Holiday Banquet goes first. Friday, December 12, is the date, good food and fellowship the agenda in this festive setting.† It is highly recommended.† We need an advance head count, so register at our next meeting or call Bonnie David ASAP (636-949-0825).† Remember, this will serve as our December club meeting.
There was lots of spirited discussion at our last meeting.† After all the discussion about Andy Stark's racing, his engine blew in a Friday practice run!† So, as it turns out, we did not subsidize an entry fee.† The Bias Winery Run was great: good weather and a good 19-car drive.† However, we did learn first-hand that ladybugs do bite and that they have infested Berger, Missouri!† Regarding upcoming events, John Lamberg is working on a holiday lights tour and dinner, Mel and Gail Parentin are working on a Polar Bear Run for early February.† Dave Massey isn't actually planning a New Year's Eve party, so rather than breaking in, John Lamberg may provide his place as a back-up venue!
I've marked the change of seasons in the traditional ways: the replacement of rusty steam pipes in the home heating system and battling for a parking space at the Galleria just this morning.† Hope your preparations go just as well.† In the literature, the November issue of "Thoroughbred and Classic Cars" lists the 30 best and the 30 worst classics and sports cars. †On the best list, the TR 4 is number three, after the XKE (understandable) and the MGB (?!).† TR 6 is 13.† TR 7 made the worst list (wow!).
I look forward to seeing everyone at our next meeting on Nov. 18th, and at Bevo on Dec. 12th!
Friday, December 12 is the date for this year's holiday banquet.† Bevo Mill is generally decorated for the season and the buffet is quite good.† We meet there at 7:30 PM and dine at 8:00.† There will be a gift exchange, generally of the "trash and treasure" variety.† A cash bar is adjacent to our dining room.† The same excellent menu and the same room (Oak Room) will be provided.† The club will subsidize the cost of one member plus one guest.† As I recall, the membership decided that this subsidized cost would be $11 per person.† Additional friends and family members are welcome, but must pay the full $16.95 each.† As usual, the club will cover tax and gratuities.† Neat, but informal dress is appropriate.† In other words, leave the greasy overalls at home in favor of sweaters and Dockers.† This is a really good time and a good value (for you Scotsman).† Be there or be square!
This time, Chris Allgood was at our meeting.† She took very good notes.† But I didnít ask for the meeting minutes early enough to give her time to get them written up.† So, here is my half **** interpretation of what happened at our last meeting.
We had a significant discussion about our Christmas party and membership cost.† We agreed that members will be responsible for an even dollar amount and that the club will pick up on the balance and the tax & gratuity.† We voted to treat Joe Mueller to dinner at our Christmas party.† Joe did a lot of work to organize the food and work for our fundraiser at the British Car Show.
I made a proposal that we sponsor Andy Starkís upcoming race fees at Gateway International.† After some discussion among the attending members, a majority voted in favor of the proposal.† Andy said he would only accept it if he raced.† His engine quit, so he didnít race.† So in the end, the club has not paid.† Perhaps Iíll bring up the proposal again next spring.
The Good††††††††††††††††††† The Bad††††††††††††††††††††† and††††††††††††††††† The Ugly
The Good : Two Dog Racing started the October race weekend on Friday with a few test sessions at Gateway. The weather was perfect.† Sunshine and temps in the mid 70's made for perfect racing climate or that drive to the apple orchard.† Both would have been great in our British Iron.
The Bad:† Andy brought a newly freshened Motor out to test a hotter race cam and some suspension modifications.† He came in early in the first session due to engine lugging and loose handling in the corners.† After a timing adjustment he was back on the track for session two and the Ugly.† Not sure of the problem but 0 oil pressure and a distinguishable clunking sound from the lower end ended the GT 6's race weekend.
The Spitfire ran great after spending some time on a chassis dyno for fine tuning in August.† I turned consistent 1:15 laps (3 seconds faster than previously) and even an unduplicated 1:12.† I was ready for racing on Saturday.
The Ugly:† Low 50's and Rain.† Saturdays weather.† Do you risk wadding up a perfectly good race car on a meaningless non-points event to impress your friends? You bet you do.† Qualifying started on slicks......no sooner than completing the first lap did the skies begin to open up.† Imagine driving on an iced over pond in a spitfire with a dozen porcelain eggs perched on your radioís antenna.† You get the idea.† I came in after three laps.
The race weather was sure to be as unpredictable and I wasnít going out on slicks again.† But you need rain tires, which we left at home.† After a quick run to mi casa and 80 bucks in remounting and balancing we were ready go.
The field was a split start with a whole bunch of nasty spec racer fords in the front.† Being on the track with these guys is like being on highway 70 going west at 11:00 at night being wedged between a bunch of deaf truck drivers without rear view mirrors.† These guys have just enough money to be reckless so bodywork is part of the fun.† As far as my race goes there was a past champion Alfa Romeo and a midget gridded ahead of me.
The rain tires hooked up well at the green flag and the spit jumped out to the lead.† It didnít last long as that Alfa came whipping past and the rain came pouring down.† That guy could drive.† I passed the midget, which soon after spun out in the grass.† With my wife in the crowd and Creig and Dave Massey next to her there was no way I was having an off track excursion.† I stayed patient with every muscle tensed trying to keep the car on the track at an average speed of 65 mph.† It was a lot of work.† Around lap 7 the Alfa spun in front of me nearly taking a Honda Prelude with it and putting me back in first place.† This didnít last long.† That Alfa guy could drive and soon went by.....I never saw him again.
I spent the rest of the race dicing it out with TR6, which I finally passed on the last lap.† This gave me second place in my class.† Fatigue set in the paddock.† To me there is no more stressful experience than racing in the rain.† Thanks to Jack and Steve Fanscher for their unwavering mechanics enthusiasm and to Creig Houghtaling and Dave Massey for braving the weather.† If it werenít for them I would have been in a warm house drinking cold beer watching Matlock reruns.
The season ends....We look forward to seeing the club at future races next year.
Hi guys!† I hope that you've had a great driving season this year and as you start to plan for next year, I hope you will consider taking part in what has to be one of the best British Car events in the Midwest for 2004 - The Triple Crown Endurance Rally Series.† This is the first year where all three major endurance rallies will be under the umbrella of an overall series.† The Missouri Endurance Rally, the Grand Lake Tour, and the Abingdon Endurance Trials are part of series to determine an overall champion.† While all three rallies can still be ran singly and without having to take part in the series, for those who wish to step up to the challenge, the Triple Crown should provide some great competition!
We have the dates of all three events scheduled:† The Missouri Endurance Rally will take place March 20-21 in St Louis, the Grand Lake Tour will be Aug 12-13 in Grand Rapids, and the Abingdon Trials will be Oct 9-10 in Columbus, IN.
Many of you who have competed over the past couple of years will be receiving a hard copy of the registration forms and the rules sheet in the mail.† For those whose address we didn't have, here is a link to the same forms:† http://www.mgcars.org.uk/namgbr/triplecrown.doc
Classified Ads:† Contact Creig Houghtaling at the address listed below, or firstname.lastname@example.org or 636-305-1143 to place a free ad in this newsletter.
FOR SALE† 1973 GT6 MKIII.† Rusted floors, door bottoms, and sills.† Other rust here and there.† Not run for ten years.† $500.† Contact Jim Buck, 1304 Elm, Jacksonville Illinios 62650.† 217-243-1449
SLTOA Shirts, $25, Call Bonnie David for delivery to out next meeting.† (636) 949-0825