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Porsche Club of America
Golden Gate Region

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December 2008. Volume 48, Issue 12
In This Issue
President's Message
Letter from the Editor
Letters to the Editor
Competition Corner
Board of Directors
Membership Report
The Power Chef
Autobahn Adventures
Porsche Au Bon PainAmerica
Zone 7 Awards Ceremony
MBR visits Blackhawk
Quick Links
Dear Porsche Enthusiast,

Welcome to The Nugget, the email newsletter of the Golden Gate Region, Porsche Club of America.
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If you have any trouble viewing this email, you can click here to go to the online versions of this newsletter. For comments or feedback, click here to email the editor.

Thanks for reading.
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Pawlina Paraskova CG
Executive Editor of The Nugget
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President's Message
Bill Dally--by Bill Dally, GGR President

Close Encounters of the Hooved Kind

A little over a year ago, mid November 2007, I was driving my Boxster up to Reno to attend the Supercomputing conference.  I had just picked the car up from Yeahman's auto body earlier that day where the front bumper cover had been replaced after a mishap in our driveway involving a teenage driver.  At about 10:30PM I was on I-80 just before Auburn in the middle of three lanes traveling at - well, a speed appropriate for the road conditions.  On an otherwise deserted road, I caught some motion out of the corner of my eye and reflexively applied the brakes.

I was down to something less than 60mph when a medium sized mule deer materialized right in front of my car.  My new bumper cover took his legs out.  The deer flopped onto the hood, with his head landing on top of the right front fender.  He then slid up to the windshield and for a fraction of a second I could see nothing but fur.  This fraction of a second seemed to last a long time as I wondered whether I was about to have a deer in my face and whether that might be the last thing I ever experience.  Fortunately, however, the windshield held and the deer went up over the top of the car not touching the convertible top or the rear trunk lid.  I assume he landed somewhere in the road behind me.

After the initial moment of excitement passed, I took stock of the situation.  The car seemed to be operating fine - except that the right headlight wasn't pointing quite the right direction.  The car tracked straight when I released the wheel - or at least as straight as a car with front toe out ever tracks - and the brakes pulled evenly when applied.  At the next exit, the first safe place to pull over, I turned off the interstate and inspected the car with a flashlight.  The picture below shows what my flashlight revealed.  While the bumper, hood, right fender, and right headlight looked pretty bad, there were no fluids leaking from the car -there are three radiators right behind the front bumper - and nothing structural seemed to be bent.
 Dec BillD

Weighing the condition of the car and the fact that I had to give a talk in Reno at 9AM the next morning, I decided that it was safe to drive and continued on my way.   I did pull off one more time when I got to a foggy area to pull the fuse for the right headlight.  Its bobbing in the fog was reducing my forward vision.

After the conference in Reno, I drove back to Palo Alto and dropped the car back off at Yeahmans where Scott did a wonderful job getting it back in perfect condition.  There was a little bit of a wait to get a new bumper cover.  According to Mike at Carlsen they only keep one in stock and someone had just bought it - me.

Looking back at this incident I find myself extremely thankful.  While my car was bent up a bit, and - not carrying collision insurance - it cost me a bit to repair it.  I was unscratched.  I'm very glad that the Porsche engineers designed our cars to be crashworthy - and in particular that they designed the windshield to hold up to a 200lb deer at 60mph.  Things could have been a lot worse.

I sometimes wonder what the deer was thinking.  Had he suffered losses in the deer stock market, or perhaps some fair doe had broken his heart.  Having lost perspective, this anguished deer stood next to I-80 waiting for a suitable car to leap in front of.  Not just any car would do, he had to wait for the shiny red Porsche.   

Its unlikely that deer have such complex thoughts.  More likely deer think only of food, sex, and predators - actually I know some people who are like this.  Given that hunting season had just started, this deer was probably running scared and not paying much attention where it ran.  I just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Many of us will be doing a lot of driving over the coming holidays.   As we do so, we need to make a point of being vigilant.  While driving can be a very enjoyable experience, it can also be dangerous - often for reasons beyond our control.  Whether it's a deer jumping in front of your car, a drunk driver crossing the center line, or someone yakking on a cell-phone running a stop sign, being alert and prepared can make the difference between a minor inconvenience and a real tragedy.  Be careful out there.

Bill
Jerry WoodsSmart Racing
Letter from the Editor
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--by John Celona, Nugget Editor


New Feature: Letters to the Editor


At the great suggestion of a member, this month we're adding a new feature to The Nugget: Letters To the Editor. This came at the suggestion of GGR member Mike Sherman, whose letter appears below.

As most publications do, we'll follow a few simple rules:
  1. Letters must be signed. No anonymous submissions. 
  2. No hate mail of any sort.
  3. Any opinions offered are solely those of the author and not of GGR, its members, officers, or directors, or of any of the PCA folks.
  4. Submissions may be edited for length and publication is not guarranteed.
Other than that, we'll try to publish as wide a variety as possible of what GGR's members would like to say. To submit a letter, just click on my photo or here to send me an email.

Also, do keep in mind that, if you have a question, feel free to email the GGR Board or one of the directors whose picture appears in The Nugget (they're all linked to email addresses). Those emails do get answered--every one!

As always, thanks for reading.
CommCovRennwerks
Letters to the Editor

About a thousand years ago, well maybe less than that, in 1970 when my wife and I returned to the States after my tour in Vietnam, we finally succumbed to our obsession for a Porsche and adopted an "almost new" Porsche 912.  Underpowered and certainly not too practical for parents of a two year old, or a new Navy Lieutenant J.G. with little or no money to spare, and no place to live, it was, nonetheless, the culmination of a dream. 

To own a Porsche, to become one of the elite (and BTW that was not a pejorative at the time), to buzz down the 405 looking glam, that was the ultimate trip.  But the highlight was recognizing other Porsche zealots as we passed with a wave, a blip of the headlights, or even a honk and receiving the same in return.  After all weren't we the smartest, most knowledgeable, and stylish of the motoring public (none of that English sports car stuff for us, we recognized German engineering early). 

So, what's up today?  Once more ensconced in my 2005 Porsche Boxster, I ply the highways and blip, wave and honk, but to no avail.  Have my fellow devotees become so complacent, so elite (and now it is a pejorative), that they can't return my recognition of their smarts?  I say it's time to resurrect the wave, blip and honk to our Porsche repertoire!  Take heed for the next time I pass you...I may do more than wave!  

Mike Sherman, Half Moon Bay

www.highperformancehouse.com
High Performance House
Competition Corner
Thompson

--by Dan Thompson, Competition Director

The DEC (driver's event comm.) will be holding it's open meeting on December 7, 2008 at 9:00AM.  The meeting will be held at my home, you can find the address on the GGR  website.  Please bring your own chair.  This meeting will be open to any GGR members or Zone 7 members that participate in GGR AX or DE/TT events.  Proposals for 2009 will be  discussed.  Please bring any constructive suggestions, ideas or concerns about next years proposals.  The meeting should not run too long since there is nothing extremely controversial on the docket for this year.

Time to start getting your car prepared for next season.  Next year promises to be an interesting one at the AX venues and also at the GGR TT/DE series. 

For AX we may have a new venue for our events.  We should also have the last pieces of our new timing system ready for deployment.  Bar code scanners, printers and data being logged directly into a lap top along with the wireless timer links,  will make the environment in the timing trailer much calmer.

Thanks to Matt and Carl Switzer for doing such a great job with the AX series this past year.
For the TT/DE series, 3 of the events should be including a Club Race.  Some things are still in the works but this looks very promising, and don't be concerned, the TT/DE portion of the weekend will not suffer any loss of track time...as a matter of fact, we may even be able to add some track  time for the TT/DE participants.  What a deal.

Again thank you to Andrew Forrest for 3 years of being at the helm of the TT/DE series.  He has done a great job and leaves the series in good financial shape.

So get that car into the garage and start on getting it track ready for next season.  I have already put a new set of springs on my C2 and will be getting a nice alignment done soon.  

This will be my last column, as the new Competition Director will be taking over in January.  Wayne is a great guy and should bring lots of enthusiasm to the position.

I will be enjoying a bit more free time at many events in the future.

And lastly, may all of you have a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Holidays....

Dan

European Autotech
BPS Repro
Board of Directors
Celona--by John Celona, GGR Secretary

GGR Board of Directors
Meeting Minutes for November 12, 2008

The meeting was held at the residence of the President, Bill Dally. The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. Present were Bill Dally, Rob Murillo, Andrew Forrest, Mike Cullinan, Bill Benz, Matt Switzer, Sharon Neidel, Mark Powell, Larry Adams, John Celona, Claude Leglise, Carl Switzer, Jeff Kost, Paul Larson, and Dan Thompson.

Call for agenda changes: add two discussion items.

Call for calendar changes: none

Approval of October minutes: already approved via email.

Postmortem of events

10/17 ALMS Penske LS Tour
10/18 Alameda Auto X 8
11/8 Dent Pro Day

Directors' Reports

President: nothing to report.

Vice-President

Upcoming event status report:

11/15 Porsche (Boxster) Brunch
TBD Joint BOD Meeting
1/11/09 Awards  Banquet Hiller 

Certificates are ordered for the following events: NA

Certificates are in place for the following events:
11/18 Alameda Auto X

Treasurer:  Nothing unusual. Coming to the year high-water mark before starting to pay deposits for events the coming year. About at the same place as last year at this time.

Motion to approve the treasurer's report was passed unanimously.

Secretary:  nothing to report.

Social

Penske / Flying Lizard Tour at Laguna Seca ALMS Races, Friday 10/17/08. Eighteen of the twenty people pre-registered (12 GGR, 4 LPR, 2 DVR, 2 OR) attended the tour given by Andrew Schupack of PMNA.

Year End Banquet at Hiller Aviation Museum, Sunday 1/11/2009. Hiller reserved from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Contract signed, $500.00 deposit paid.

Membership

Membership continues to decline slightly. Motion to approve the new members passed unanimously.

Competition: DEC meeting hasn't yet happened. Not at lot to do with this year's crop of proposed rules changes (mostly for adjustment of points).

Webmaster: 880 hits last month. A suggestion was made to make it easier for people to find the club when they search for a "San Francisco Porsche club."

Topics for discussion

Mike Cullinan - 09 TT budgets: Consider approving club race budgets one race at a time. PRC/SCCA cooperation on club races. Motion to approve time trial budget for 2009 was passed unanimously. 

Board approval requirement for political statements in Nugget: issue tabled

Endorsement of Larry Sharp as a write-in candidate: will send as an email announcement since the deadline for voting is before the next issue of the Nugget comes out.

Election results: ballots received so far are all for the slate of candidates running (no write-in candidates).

Consider nomination of Sharon Neidel for Zone 7 Rep: unanimously supported

AX update: lots of possible changes next year at Alameda, though operating permit for 2009 is in place. A lot depends on whether a potential lessee is able to lease GGR's present site at Alameia. 

However, work is proceeding to explore a possible alternative venue. Follow-up work is required to see if an alternative venue is possible. 

Charity Selection Process: GGR has produced about $2800 in income not from club members. Proposal was to round this up to $3000 and give half to the charity Carlsen Porsche supports and half to a child care facility. Motion to do so was passed unanimously.

Year-end Banquet: it will be at the Hiller Aviation Museum in San Carlos on Sunday, January 11 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Motion was passed to have the club pay for the venue and to price tickets for attendees to pay for the food.

Bill Dally solicited recommendations for the end of the year awards.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 p.m.


Club Sportiva2
October Membership Report

Jeff Kost--by Jeff Kost, Membership Director

Total Members:    2463
Primary:              1430
Affiliate:              1032
Life:                         1

New Members:    10
Transfers In:         3
Transfers Out:       8


 New Members

Walter Braden

San Francisco

2007 Boxster

Donna Burke

San Francisco

 

Johnny & Kathy Edwards

APO

2007 Cayman

Adam Forste

San Francisco

1979 911 SC

Louis & Tanya Gascoigne

San Carlos

2009 C2S

Aron Hoffman

San Mateo

2006 Cayman S

Cynthia Honaker

San Jose

 

Joshua & Michael Khani

Stanford

2007 Cayman S

Karen LaMorte

Campbell

 

Gregory Louis

San Jose

2005 Cayenne S

Edward Morris

San Francisco

1963 356 B

Robert & Gigi Read

Sunnyvale

2003 911

Erik Steinman

San Francisco

2003 911 4S


Anniversaries

35 Years

Kerry Bahl

Pleasanton

1977 911S

Edward Wuenschel

Redwood City

1966 911

30 Years

Wendell Tong

Alamo

1996 993

25 Years

Don Miraglia

Redwood City

1974 911


20 Years

Tammy Conston

San Jose

 

Krysia Musto

Woodside

 

Ed Saadi

Los Altos

1988 944

Larry Sharp

Livermore

1974 911

Dolores Hospodor

Los Gatos

 

Donna Sylvanovich

Fremont

 

15 Years

Neil Jackson

Orinda

1969 911

Matt Orovitz

Nevada City

1969 911

Jonathan Roman

San Francisco

 

Megan Sparkes

Newark

 

Andrea Wuenschel

Redwood City

 

10 Years

Terry Diehl

Bethel Island

 

Kris Hamilton

Los Altos

 

Judy Murillo

Santa Cruz

 

Patti Stenn

Morgan Hill

 

Lisa Weathers

Foster City

 

Tara Kerwin

San Francisco

 

Richard Linsdall

San Carlos

1991 911

5 Years

Mary Hayashi

San Jose

 

Charles Wallace

San Francisco

 

Joel Rosenbaum

San Bruno

1983 911 SC


Vineyard Specialties3


The Power Chef
NE Bike
Holiday Survival Salads

--by John Celona, The Power Chef®

It's that time of year when the party invitations are mounting and an array of traditions and treats cry for attention. Starting with Thanksgiving (where the average American is offered enough calories to sustain a nomadic family for a month) and proceeding through Christmas and New Year's, there's barely a letup in the opportunities to nosh. Try all FIVE desserts! They're delicious!

If you're like me, The Battle of the Bulge is never-ending. Ectomorphs out there--you know who you are--I don't want to hear about it. A personal trainer at my gym, Charlie, is like this. He's rail-thin and complains that if he doesn't pay attention to eating and misses workouts, he loses weight. I can't stand it. He should try a few years of living with a strong family tradition of caboose-sized cabooses. I've made my peace with the size-32 pants going the way of the Reagan administration, but I'm still holding on to the 34's for dear life. Don't even mention "relaxed fit."

People who usually pay some attention to the nutritional and caloric content of what they eat seem to throw caution to the winds during The Holidays. Exactly how much butter, cream, and sour cream went into those mashed potatoes, anyway?

When you add on that busy schedules and holiday closings make it hard to keep the "burn it" part of "bite it and burn it" (TM!) in balance, it becomes all too easy to start January with your holiday cheer permanently attached to you. And if you swim all year round like I do, there's no hiding it until the warm weather returns. I'll be bulging out of the bathing suit in no time.

So I started making what I call "Holiday Survival Salads." These are salads so jam-packed with nutritious, fiber-rich, and yummy stuff and so low in calories that starting a holiday meal with a big helping is a great way to limit the space for mischief and send the total calorie count way down. The formula is very simple:
  1. Start with just vegetables (any kind you like)
  2. Top it with a great tasting but low-fat dressing
A variety of vegetables is key to keeping the appeal and flavor high. A huge pile of spring mix is fine nutritionally, but rather boring. And there are so many to choose from. As you'll see in the sample recipe below, green beans and garbonzo beans go into my salads regularly. They add color, crunch, and flavor. A salad should be something that looks so good you want to eat it! Otherwise, you could just take a double-dose of Metamucil and call it a day.

The key to dressings is to make them yourself. It's easier than you think. A few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, a splash of balsamic vinegar and some salt and pepper will do the trick. I include my recipe for Low-Fat Bleu Cheese Dressing to illustrate my trick of using mostly yoghurt and a little mayonnaise instead of all mayonnaise to drastically cut the fat content of creamy dressing. This trick works just as well for cole slaw dressing and Thousand Islands dressing. Most store-bought dressings are loaded with fat, and I find the "lite" ones taste just dreadful--usually loaded with some sweetener to disguise the lack of fat. I've tried the reduced fat mayonnaise where the first ingredient is water rather than oil, and to me they taste more concocted by du Pont than Cordon Bleu.

So here's a simple example of one of my Holiday Survival Salads, but do just take it as a starting point for dreaming up your own. As long as you follow the two rules described above, you can't go wrong.

Bon appetit,
The Power Chef

Holiday Survival Salad

PC December

The Gist

Thow together whatever fresh, frozen, or canned vegetables you like and add a low-fat dressing. The list below is just an example.

Ingredients

1 bag ready-to go washed spinach
1 can julienne beats, drained
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
1 can garbonzo beans, drained
1 lb. carrots, cut on the diagonal into slices
1 bag frozen baby green beans
1 bag frozen sugar snap peas

Method

The simplest way is to just open the cans, thaw the frozen vegetables, and construct your own creative arrangement. In the above photo, I put the spinach leaves on the bottom.

If you're up for taking a little extra time to improve the textures, a little blanching will do the trick. Bring a pot of water to a boil, then, one at a time, add a cookable vegetable, then use a strainer to scoop it into a colander. Immediately rinse it with cold water to hold the color and crispness. For this salad, I blanched the green beans, peas, and carrots. The beets and garbonzo beans are already cooked.

Serve with a low fat dressing on the side. Leftovers will stay good for a few days if not dressed.

Notes

Fresh green beans and snap peas also work well. I use the frozen when I'm short of time and don't want to remove strings or ends. If you have the time, the fresh vegetables have better flavor and consistency than the frozen ones.

Low-Fat High-Flavor Bleu Cheese Dressing

This version uses my trick of yoghurt with a little mayonnaise to turn out a bleu cheese dressing vastly better than I've had elsewhere. A generous portion of real bleu cheese (too expensive for commercial varieties) is part of the secret.

The Gist

The bleu cheese is crumbled and mixed with the yoghurt, then add and mix the remaining ingredients. That's it!

Ingredients

1 cup yoghurt
4 oz. bleu cheese
2 Tb. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. granulated garlic
1/2 tsp. dry mustard powder
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. lemon juice or white balsamic or white wine vinegar

Method

Place the yoghurt in a small mixing bowl. Crumble the bleu cheese into it and mix well with a sturdy fork, breaking up the larger lumps. Mix just enough to distribute the bleu cheese flavor, leaving some small pieces.

Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Chill until ready to use. Will keep in the fridge for a week or more.

Notes

The key to this recipe is a piece of good quality bleu cheese. It's expensive, but you only need a little. Avoid the pre-crumbled bleu cheese because it seems to lose a lot of flavor in the process.

Kahlers2
suspension performance
Autobahn Adventures
The Ultimate European Driving Experience
Story and photos by Garey Cooper ( PCA - Orange Coast Region )

It all began with...It all started at the Porsche Club of America, Orange Coast Region's Christmas Party in December 2006. There was a silent auction (no mimes were harmed) and one of the items was the Autobahn Adventures tour of Germany for 2007....hmmm, what driver didn't ever dream of driving the Autobahn in a Porsche? Hey, I thought; let's take a chance. How far would you go to drive a car on a highway? Of course it's a nice highway but it's a highway nonetheless. All right, it is the AUTOBAHN, famed in story and legend and it is true, there are times and areas where there is NO SPEED LIMIT.
 
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Somewhere across the sea...Fast forward to September 2007 and we are on a jet to Germany, that would be Stuttgart (or Lourdes to the faithful), home of the flat six and the driving passion that is Porsche. In Stuttgart you not only have Porsche but Mercedes Benz, talk about a town with pedigree. With some American pride I might call it the "Detroit of Europe", but for the fact that in the tides of business it seems that Detroit is in thrall to Stuttgart

Our first stop was at the Kempinski Hotel Neu-Isenburg in Frankfurt. Here we were greeted by Mark and Tina Trewartha of Autobahn Adventures, who would be our hosts for the trip. And in the most exciting preamble, out in the parking lot there was a shiny row of Porsches. Imagine a kid of 12 walking into a candy shop and being told, "take one, any one" and, well, you get the idea. Escorted by Mark and Tina we each had to choose our new 911 for the next 10 days. Just like Henry Ford said, "take any color you want so long as it's black." In fact, they were all black. We selected a Carrera 4S that was, you guessed it, black!
 
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Our Porsche was outfitted with all the options you could want including a navigation system. Programmed in English it became our "Passport tout" to every nook and cranny of Germany, and Switzerland that we visited. And boy did we visit some amazing places.

Ventura Highway...The Autobahn system is unique. It was the inspiration for the US Interstate system and was a national highway system that in early conception was meant to mobilize troops to one frontier or another. Only the Romans were better road builders; they got it and so did the Germans in the first half of the twentieth century. While gasoline is expensive there, the taxes go for the infrastructure and sad to say almost any German road is better than its USA counterpart. Smoother, better marked, and better engineered. Their allure to the USA-based driver is the open areas that have virtually no speed limits. And I mean NO SPEED LIMITS. We'll give you a moment to let this sink in, yup; put the pedal to the metal and go till she won't go no more. There is a distinctive sign that signals it's time to let the petroleum byproducts loose and fly and that's what people do. You'll see station wagons at 250+ KPH with kids in the back coloring. At the same time you might think you're flying when suddenly in your rear view mirror a Renault wants by you! My advice is to move right on over and let them by. They know the roads and you don't; don't let your "macho" get too loose here. At high speeds, really high speeds, things are different. Be aware and take care is my best advice; increment up to the speeds and be respectful of local knowledge. A fender bender at 250 KPH has a whole new meaning. By the way I was just kidding about the Renault, none of them passed me!

Nurburgring, Green Hell...The Dorint Novotel Am Nurburgring (did I forget to mention that ALL our hotels were five star?) was our next stop. And nearer to "car guy" heaven you can't get. The hotel rooms open right upon the "new ring" and I awoke to the sounds of cars squealing their tires right under our balcony. Just in the distance one could see the fabled North Ring; built in the 20's and the playground of Nuvolari, Rosemyer, Schumacher, Stewart, Clark, etc., etc. The best part of the whole trip was the chance to put a toe into these very same waters! AUTOBAHN ADVENTURES had set us up for one afternoon at the Nurburgring, not in our rental cars (they do have insurance rules in Germany) but in modified BMW's rented from a local race-car-hire company. I had opted to select the BMW 1.8 liter race-prepared car for the day. There were other bigger cars available, but this one had the five-point harness, was stripped and road race prepared. She was all momentum, maybe 180 horses tops, but what a flying shingle. We got her just over 150 KPH on the straight pulling all the way before shutting down, but a more responsive car you wouldn't find.

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Now some words about driving on the Nurburgring on track days...everyone runs! That is EVERYONE. You will see minivans filled with families (I did), a little delivery truck with about a 25 horsepower motor and 1" wide tires (I did), and a full blown modified GT-3 driven to the absolute limit (I did), and all on the same lap! Everyone that shows up with a driver's license and the track fee can go out, which is pretty much what everyone does. There are motorcycles roaring around the place with the leather clad riders leaned over so far you wonder how they stay on; sometimes they don't. Now I expect what you would like to hear is that everybody gets along and respects each other and accidents are rare, but that in fact would be untrue. Sadly accidents are NOT RARE and most days the track is shut down and running cars are stopped as some unfortunate is helicoptered out to the hospital.  Hospital sounds so right in German: Krankenhaus.
                                                                                                                                                   The Nurburgring is also long, very difficult to remember and is filled with blind turns. If you imagine a mountain road twisting and turning with dips and depressions, you will have the correct picture. Probably the most photographed turn is the "Carousel". This is an almost, but not quite, 360° banked bowl that really fast cars dip down into, and after traveling around the bowl are flung out with increased momentum like the marble in a roulette wheel. Incredibly all of the turns have names (whoever had the time to go through there and name all of these I don't know). Some of them are self descriptive like: flug platz....others obscure and known only by the locals. But in my time on the track it certainly earned its reputation and nickname. You do have to drive with one eye in the rear view mirror as there are incredibly quick cars mixed in with the proletariat. I shared my driving with Steve, a fellow traveler and he and I agreed to act as spotters for one another, which worked out well.

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 After our day on the track, we retreated to the bar at the hotel. This bar had autographs filling every square inch and all of the patrons were encouraged to add their names to those who had gone before. So the walls are covered with signatures of the famous, near-famous, and infamous, as well as yours truly. After some excellent German beer we were all bragging about how fast we went and I began to make up names for corners and asking people how the others had driven them: "say, Keith how fast did you take Schnigglefritz? Keith Verlaque of San Diego is a fellow PCA member and a driver of note down that way and he gave me a blank stare and said: "where's that corner?" "Oh," I replied, "two kilometers past Bunzenbreaken." Keith didn't recall them so I just said, "I just go flat out and hope for the best!"

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But Wait, There's More....You can't stay too long at the Nurburgring in my book, but some people like Mrs. Cooper disagree so we had to leave the next day and generally continued heading south. Each evening the Trewartha's had scheduled stops at beautiful hotels with great gourmet dinners. Days were mostly on our own exploring local roads, or in our case, golf courses. Mrs. Cooper usually travels with her suitcase which we in the family have named the "widow maker". Though she stands just an eyelash over five feet, her suitcase is a little taller than she is. As far as weight is concerned, let's just say I've seen experienced bellmen, and cab drivers turn and run upon first sighting our luggage. So my wife's first challenge was packing enough to wear with a golf bag. I am sure some physics laws were violated along the line but she did manage to accomplish her packing mission. And although my right arm is now longer than my left arm and I can tie my shoes without bending over, we managed to drag, haul, and cajole all of that gear into our Black Carerra from stop to stop. There were a couple of problems like when I bought a pack of gum and had to take it out of the wrapper to fit it into the car, but most of the time we were fine.
 
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In Switzerland...Part of the wonderful itinerary planned by Mark and Tina was the Alpine region of Switzerland around Lake Lucerne. To say this area is beautiful is almost an injustice, it truly is beyond that. The lake itself is spectacular enough but the backdrop over the lakes of those high mountains comes right out of central casting for everything you think should be right about Switzerland. This was one of the occasions where we had a planned daytime outing. We were scheduled to go up the Alpine passes and cross over one to come back down into Lucerne. Armed with our navigation system, walkie-talkies, and maps, our brave little group took off and believe it or not got lost! How with all of that technology did we manage this one might ask? It seems that there had been some recent road construction in the area and some of the maps had not been updated. The result was near hilarity as one by one, the cars were separated and slowly drifted out of radio range, like an episode of Lost (without the commercials). I ended up with one other car, that of our tour leader himself: Mark, who I figured had at least an inkling of where we were headed. So, he and I craftily got ourselves re-routed and finally, near the mountain top, met up with the rest of our party who had beaten us there by about half an hour! We carried on over the pass and the views were breathtaking. It is hard to describe looking out over the mountain flank with the road one long ribbon of asphalt winding down into the valley with towns and ultimately the city of Lucerne lying far below. Not a place for the faint of heart or those who get car sick easily.
 
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While in Lucerne Mrs. Cooper and I had our other "navigation incident". We were looking for the Lucerne golf club and had duly programmed the address into our system. It got us right to the smallest road you ever saw and said: "take the road." So, take the road we did which went straight up the hill and grew ever narrower the further we got. Ultimately we began to lose confidence as I realized the only way back down was to....back down! When we finally saw people pushing golf carts past us giving quizzical looks as we drove up to a tee box, we understood that some mistakes had been made. I used the tee box to get the car pointed down the hill again, shouted "fore!" and we trundled back down the hill, past dazed looking golfers where we realized the entrance road was only about one-quarter-inch wider than the golf path and about two feet past it! In spite of it all we still were allowed to play there, although I don't believe they appreciated my California yodel on the elevated tees: "yodel-lay-he-a, golf ball on the way!"
 
And Now Back to Reality...Ultimately all good things must end and so our Autobahn Adventure ended as well. After a wonderful 10 days we pointed our Porsche back towards Frankfurt where we had to return the car; this hurt.  Would I go again? You bet. In a heartbeat. If you are a Porsche/Car enthusiast you will definitely not be disappointed as my narrative here only touches upon all of the activities and sights we saw ! ......If you want to know more don't hesitate to contact Mark and Tina on 714.964.0280 or visit their website at  www.autobahn-adventures.com

Porsche Au Bon PainAmerica

--by the Editor

After years of fending off unfair criticisms that it wasn't "green" enough, Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, has released the first official photos of its utterly green car, the Au Bon PainAmerica. Original plans to name the car "Pie America" were dropped after threatening letters were received from attorneys for the popular movie series with a similar name. Accordingly, Porsche settled on the revised name in recognition of how American sales are its bread-and-butter.

The Au Bon PainAmerica (known internally as the Type ABP), uses a revolutionary new earth-friendly manufacturing process developed in conjunction with Genentech and SPECTRE. No new materials are used in its manufacturing process. Instead, brand-new unsold full-size SUV's and pickups (purchased by Porsche in bulk at astonishing discounts) are lowered into a "secret sauce" rumored to consist of synthetic motor oil, brake fluid, and an unknown German lager. Then, a retrovirus developed in conjunction with Genentech goes to work inserting the Porsche DNA. After an estimated four-week incubation period, a complete and fully functional ABP emerges. This part of the process is fairly standard (GM has used it for years, for example, to produce new Cadillacs from old ones), but what is not known is how Porsche does the paint colors. The Nugget's calls to Stuttgart and Atlanta requesting comment on this topic went unanswered.

This heritage is evident to the careful observer. For example, in the photo below it's clear that the front turn signal indicators are identical to those in the 2008 Chevrolet Suburban. Although The Nugget was not able to reach anyone at Porsche, a spokesperson from Volkswagen(!) dismissed these concerns at "picken ze nits."

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The green credentials of the ABP are further illustrated in the all-electric version shown below. A generous-sized hatchback and rear compartment houses the 3000 size "D" batteries on which the car runs. Porsche claims a range on these of almost 200 miles on a full charge and, if true, this solution would appear to solve at a stroke the refueling problem nagging electric cars. A recharge would be as close as your nearest 7 Eleven. When asked about the time required to change out the batteries, our Volkswagen source stated that, in tests, one of Porsche's competition pit crews has changed out all 3000 batteries in 8 seconds.

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In addition, the electric version shown also employs another novel green technology with its special "Sequestration Blue" color, available as an extra-cost option. Using another secret gene-based technology, this paint actually leeches carbon out of the atmosphere as the car drives and secretes it in the form of fullerenes (also known as "buckyballs") into a special reservoir. The suction created by this process is enough to double the downforce at speed without the use of ground effects. The reservoir is then drained at service intervals and the resulting carbon credits can either be retained by the owner and traded on world markets or exchanged for Porsche Design tchotchkes at the dealer.

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Our Volkswagen contact suggested that a sufficient number of Porsches in this color could clear Los Angeles of smog in a matter of weeks, and that funds to combat global warming would be better spent subsidizing the purchase of Porsches than on the many other "silly science" schemes out there.

For the truly dedicated environmentalists, Porsche offers an even greener version of the ABP: The Porsche Type ABP Hybrid. This model cuts no corners in reducing its environmental footprint. For example, as is clearly visible in the photo below, the brake calipers are actually fabricated with corn cobs left over from ethanol production.

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Specially reinforced with--you guessed it--fullerenes, Porsche claims these oversized calipers are fade-free and give off a nice roasted popcorn smell under heavy use. The "Super-Extra-Sequestration Blue" color is said to be so attractive to carbon that it will suck the filament right out of incandescent bulbs thoughtless folks have not yet replaced with fluourescent.

The powertrain is equally unique. The complete electric powertrain is present and the car runs solely on electric mode in stop-and-go traffic. A second, independent powertrain consisting of specially trained german hamsters running either forward or backward in the wheels doubles the power available for acceleration, allows the batteries to recharge when in cruising mode, and dramatically decreases stopping distance when the hamsters run the other way (the official term for this is "Zusätzlicher starker Bremsen mit Hamstern."

When the car is stopped for extended periods and the brakes cool, the hamsters munch on the oversized corn calipers to recharge. Cute little hamster poops help promote growth of green plants in pavement cracks.  A photo of the hybrid version below clearly shows the four hamster entrances in the back of the car which enable the little critters to go out and play when the car is not in use. They are automatically recalled with the unlock button on the driver's key.

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Clearly, the environmental benefits of the ABP are so huge that we should all sign up for at least one regardless of the price. Personally, I'm buying two (one electric and one hybrid) because I'm suspicious that the hamsters come with annual collective bargaining.

Zone 7 Awards Ceremony
Zone 7 awards

Monterey Bay Region visits Blackhawk
MBR Blackhawk

Have a happy and safe holiday season!

As always, thanks for reading.
John Celona
Porsche Club of America-Golden Gate Region
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John Celona
Porsche Club of America-Golden Gate Region
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Porsche Club of America--Golden Gate Region | Nugget Headquarters | 505 Vista Ave | San Carlos | CA | 94070