Seven Days: Vermont Car Blog

Motor Sports

September 30, 2008

Man and Machine

There was a chance of rain and speed in my forecast. This past Sunday morning I got up early for the drive out to Stowe Mountain Resort for the Sports Car Club of Vermont’s last Autocross of the year.

I was driving a good-looking and capable Audi A4 sedan from Lewis Motors in South Burlington, Vermont. The 40 miles between Burlington and Stowe ticked by quickly and quite comfortably.

As I passed the enormous new Spruce Peak Mountain Lodge on my right a gap opened in the trees to my left and there in a large parking lot I spotted the orange traffic cone course that meant I had found my destination.

Rows of cars were lined up with their hoods open for tech inspection. There were some Mini Coopers, a few Volkswagen GTIs, Subaru Imprezas and at least half a dozen Mazda Miatas. My Audi A4 found good company with an Audi TT and an Audi S4. At two ends of the spectrum were a beautifully restored Olds 442 muscle car and a small, but very fast go-kart.

After determining that my battery was indeed bolted down and that my helmet met their requirements I was invited over to the drivers meeting.

We were divided into 3 groups. Each group would take turns driving, working the course and having some free time to get a bite or just enjoy the beautiful foliage view. The fall colors were beautiful. They should be peaking up that high this weekend. I encourage you to get out there for a foliage tour of your own.

My first run through the course was a ride-along with veteran SCCV member Jason Ross in his Mini Cooper. I don’t know what I was expecting, but he sure didn’t hesitate. We were soon hurtling through the course. He handled the Mini well and with much tire squealing we quickly passed the exit timer.

Finally it was my turn. The Audi’s 3.2 liter V6 powered it through the cones nicely. A light sprinkling of rain had wet the pavement, but the Quattro four-wheel drive kept me locked on course. I didn’t post a competitive time, but I did have a lot of fun and look forward to pushing my limits further in future events.

The SCCV members I met, women and men, both young and old, were all very nice and made all of us new-comers feel welcome. They should be commended for putting together such a great event. Thanks and see you all at Mt. Philo for the Hillclimb October 24-26

Learn more about Autocross and the SCCV.

September 29, 2008

Thunder Road Milk Bowl 2008

This weekend was the 45th running of the Thunder Road Milk Bowl. Brian Hoar, driving the #45 Goss Dodge Charger, invited me to put a video camera in his car for the race. Brian, a former ACT Late Model stock car champion is just returning to racing after a break since the end of the 2007 season. He won the Milk Bowl consecutively in 1998 and 1999.

This video features some highlights of the third segment of the Milk Bowl from inside Brian Hoar's car. Shots from the grandstands during segments one and two are interspersed to give you a better sense of the track for a more complete perspective.

Canadian Patrick Laperle won the Milk Bowl, Eric Williams was second, Ryan Nolin was third. Congratulations to all the racers for an exciting day at the track!

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