[s-cars] Re: Steamboat 2004 Event Report - (long)

Ingo D. Rautenberg ingo at waratap.com
Sat Feb 14 21:00:23 EST 2004

Oh man!  

What to say -- it's not often that an instructor gets to be the one to first stuff it at Steamboat, but I cautioned quite a few that when riding with me in MY car, I wouldn't be the most cautious of drivers ;-).  I had the choice of having some previous Steamboat scars repaired before the event or to let it all hang out -- I chose the latter.  Anyhow, damage was limited mostly to the passenger side (previously ice-prepped 2 yrs ago by Rob Dupree) and the soon-to-be replaced front fascia -- replacement waiting in the garage, thank you.  Plus a few miscellaneous shrouds,rubber mounts, hoses and assorted other pieces (though the exhaust will need a bit of work after being forced to become a makeshift reverse plow of sorts).

This was an event beyond compare and organized and implemented quite ably by my fellow compadres Scott Justusson, David Hackl, Dave Lawson and Rob Dupree.  I wasn't sure whether I'd make it until a few weeks ago, but determination and a bit of prodding by the rest of the Gruppe Q instigators won out.  The sky was clear and visibility excellent both days.  Sunday night's four inches of snow certainly helped to ease everyone into the slickness of the soon-to be-polished/buffed track.  With the benefit of one on one instructor to student ratio, each student had the benefit of working with more than one instructor.  I thoroughly enjoyed my students Brandon Rogers,  Peter Golledge, Brendan Rudack, Justin Riley, Bob Pastore and Lee Rosenthal.  BTW, didn't stuff any of their cars (though I didn't actually drive Brendan's monster, seeing it was essentially the first time his car had been driven).

My dance with the limits of adhesion and the laws of physics were tested often and Justy and others will attest to defying the odds more often than not (beware turn 3).  Had a great time giving thrill rides to those who dared.  Mike P.  -- Sorry I didn't get a chance to take you for a ride  -- next year.

BTW, I left the Fuchs at home on the V8 and drove the forged BBS's instead on almost worn-out Blizzaks (53 weeks old - with less than 7k on them).  Next time I'll carry new dedicated ones with me (like Scott J. and David H.) instead of driving them 3k every February to and from Colorado. 

As always, Lawson and Family made us most welcome and for some challenging skiing and snowboarding in Winterpark / Mary Jane for those who dared to venture with Mr. and Mrs. DoubleDiamond.  'Bout time I spent a few days on the slopes.

Thanks to WG, Rob Dupree and David Hackl for pulling me out of snow banks I couldn't get out of on my own power (note to self:  Fix rear diff lock).  Downtime was minimal, but always memorable, especially backwards at speed :-O.

Thanks to Pizzo for the comic relief, Bobbie C. for making everyone feel like family and documenting moments we were to busy experiencing, Chad for showing how it can be done with Torsen (and the fan club in tow), Justin for not being too bashful with the snow considering he trailered his Urq from 80° temps in Sunny Florida to sub-zero temps at Steamboat.  Peter G. ably demonstrated that the LT1 Beast could dance around the track with the Hakka 2's.  I think I'd put new Blizzak WS-50's first, Hakka 2's second, followed by Hakka Q's, btw.

At least my in-car-video was hard-mounted this time and shouldn't cause anyone to grab a Dramamine while viewing, and should give a bit of in-car perspective -- though Scandinavian flicks and going sideways at speed are better experienced first hand.

Does this mean I'll tone things down after the requisite paint and body work???  Only in certain areas (like turn three).  

Those of you with digital pics, video, please send them on to Scott J. so he may compile them.

And lest I forget, thanks to Steve Eiche for once again helping to undue to carbon-track damage which made my non-functional headlights shine once again.  That makes it two years in two cars -- a real wake up call for installing headlight relays.

If I've left anyone out I apologize.

Happy quattroing to all,

Yours truly,

Sideways (and then some) Rautenberg

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