Well, if you have not heard, March 17th was the 66th running of the Twelve Hours of Sebring. This event kicks off the year for real sports car racing as long as you do not count the Daytona 24. I am sure I am in the minority but, I consider Daytona to be 12 hours of left turns on a high banked oval and 12 hours of traditional rights and lefts in the infield of a high banked oval. I'm not looking to start an argument here about what real sports car racing is so I'll drop this part of the discussion. It is worth mentioning that it was also 66 years ago that Dick Thompson drove his first ever race at Sebring. That is an amazing place to start your racing career and it keeps the Sebring event closely tied to the CCA.

Oliver Gavin Facebook Post

In case you did not follow the events at Sebring, Corvette Racing had a really difficult 12 hours. Here is a Facebook quote from Oliver Gavin:

We battled hard but P6 was where we finished the #Sebring12hrs As the sun went down any speed and balance we had, evaporated... Throughout the race we worked hard to find solutions with strategy, pit stops, set up changes... But it was the story of our weekend - we were only vaguely competitive during small windows of the whole event. Racing at night around @sebringraceway is a challenge but the last couple of restarts were completely nuts, it was like driving in the Sahara... We'll regroup for Long Beach GP and go again.

It was even harder on Jan and Antonio who finished 8th in class but 37th overall behind a bunch of GTD cars but ahead of four wounded prototypes. One thing for sure is that I am certain Jake is proud of the entire Corvette Racing effort.

This race will come up again during discussion at the 2018 Corvette Racing Weekend at Hershey. One topic that is bound to also come up is BoP. The date is set for November 9th and it is on the NCM calendar now. If you are a Corvette Racing fan and have not attended this event at least once you need to mark your calendar now. I am sure that several CCA members will be there just like last year.

It was a similar story of agony for the Michael Shank Racing Acura NSX driven by Lawson Aschenbach. His GTD team finished 7th in class out of 18 cars. The results were better in Prototype with the Wayne Taylor Konica Minolta Cadillac team coming in second place behind the Tequila Patron ESM team in a Nissan DPI.

Parade Lap Porsche
This Porsche will require more than buffing.

I followed other teams in the Sebring race but I won't drag this out for our non-racing fans. There was an incident worth mentioning though, specially if you have the opportunity to get on the track for parade laps. Sebring 2018 will be marked by the fact that a pair of spectator Porsches did not survive the privilege of going out on the track for parade laps. I've see breakdowns before during parade laps but this is the first time I have seen two separate accidents during one group's set of parade laps. Below is a picture of what was reported to be the least damaged of the Porsches. It is a good reminder if you find yourself with the opportunity to go out for parade laps. You need to maintain your situational awareness, follow instructions, and avoid being a idiot. This will probably impact the opportunity to have parade laps next year at Sebring. The report was that neither IMSA nor Sebring track officials were amused.

On a happier topic, while I continue to Ramble, winter is rapidly ending and we will have a major ramp up of club activity. My advice (and pleading) is for you to get involved this year. Contact Jean Wade with ideas for events and even better let her know that you would like to help organize club events. Show up at a business meeting - I promise it is not all work.

The club is fortunate that many members volunteer their time and help make this the great club that it is. Pat Roney is a terrific example. Besides the time that he spends on his famous February Karting Event and HPDE activities, he deserves a lot of thanks for the follow-through that enabled the club to make a donation of over $600 to Hospice Caring. Folks close to the story know that a significant amount of effort went into enabling this donation. Hospice Caring is one of several charities that the club helps to support. Below is a thank you letter that we received from them.

Hospice Caring Letter

Jon Thorn
Corvette Courier Editor
newslettervette-club.org, 301-963-4864

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