Page 18 - PCA Metro NY Region POST 2019 November eMag
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Summit Point Ruminations
La Junta, Colorado
Despite the title of this article, I’ll start with a short review of the Al- pine Mountain Region PCA (AMR) DE event I attended at La Junta Colorado, which is a
4 1⁄2 hour drive from Vail where I live out there. AMR is a small 400-member region.
My friend Tom has a 2017 911GTS, so we at- tended this event. La Junta is a 1.5-mile track on a former military airbase.
There were 25 cars in attendance at the event, which is quite different than a Metro event, where we often have more than 100. Since there were 4 run groups, if you do the math you’ll under- stand that there were very few cars on track at any time. The track is easy to learn since it is absolutely flat and has only 7 turns.
The AMR people definitely have a sense of humor. When there has been an especially good off-track excursion, they give their John Deere award to that driver.
Summit Point
The next day after I returned East, I attended a non-PCA DE at the Summit Point, West Virginia Shenandoah track. Summit Point has 3 tracks
– Main, where Metro goes regularly (including this November 1-2), Shenandoah (where we had an event more than 5 years ago), and Jefferson (where I have not yet been).
Check your car
A reminder: check your car, and then check it
again. Summit Point is 300 miles away from New York City, which is very far away if you have a breakdown. And always have a can of motor oil with you.
You can be in a jam even if you check and re- check your car. Here are two examples: At this event, a Mini had one of its wheels fly off while it was on track. Fortunately, the incident happened on a slow section and the car was not damaged at all. Its owner had replaced the standard lug- nuts and installed studs instead. (Many track cars have this modification, including my Box- ster.) It seems that one of them snapped off, which put so much extra stress on the others that they snapped off also, allowing the wheel to venture off on its own. The owner was very lucky that there was no damage to the car, that there was a skilled machinist at the event who went home and got his specialized tools which could extract the remnants of the studs from the wheel hub, and that replacement lugnuts were on-hand. I learned that the studs were of low-end quality. The ones in my Boxster are manufactured for
an IMSA team and have caused me no trouble. Moral: If you are going to use aftermarket parts, get good ones.
The best laid plans ...
Sometimes, stuff happens to you no matter what. Last year I was driving to Summit Point and was less than a mile from the track when I attempted to downshift and found that the shifter was stuck in 5th gear. I realized immediately that the shifter cables had failed. (This also happened to me about 5 years ago when I was on track at Wat- kins Glen.) I did not want to abandon the car on the side of the road at night, particularly when there was a paddock full of track people and equipment so nearby.
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Track Ramblings

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