Thanks to Cheryl for the write up: We left Thursday, September 15th from It’s a Grind, the guys regular coffee hangout. It was a beautiful day, sunny and warm. The crew that left at 10:00 am consisted of the Santors, Ray Silva, Donnie (vette tech) and his friend Martin (picked him up in Camarillo). Louie lead the way up the 101 to past San Luis Obispo where we turned off toward Morro Bay to catch PCH (Hwy 1). We had lunch at the Fish Hut in Morro Bay, recommended by Donnie (who does not eat fish), it was very good. PCH was a nice drive for the most part, but slower than some would have liked. By mid day there was traffic and we ran into construction in 3 locations, two had single lane travel with escort, so the wait was long for them to bring a line of cars through. In Monterey the Santors turned off toward Pacific Grove where they stayed, Ray, Donnie and Martin headed up to Sand City to meet up with George Johnson and Russ Hicks.
The group met up in Cannery Row Thursday night to have dinner at Bubba Gumps. Our waiter quizzed us on Bubba trivia, which we were all so goooood at. Yeah! Anyway, we learned new trivia, let’s put it that way.
Friday at Laguna Seca was not as early as in the past. Santors arrived at 8:00 am to find George, Russ and Ray had arrived. Donnie and now Martin’s son, Daniel, arrived later. In the tent was the red with white stripes Z06 special edition presented to Ron Fellows earlier at the Corvette Museum when he was inducted in the hall of fame. Ron spoke with the corral attendees on Saturday before the race how grateful he was and how excited to receive the Z06 right after the race.
We received Parade lap tickets and drove the track around 1:30 pm. It was congested, but fun. Visited the Cadillac, Chevrolet and the Chevrolet technology booth. Cheryl drove a Malibu and then a Grand Sport with a longer trial run than in the past. The Chevy tech riding with Cheryl told the other guys when they got back that “she has a lead foot.” Louie drove a Volt, very very quiet car, he got it up to 72mph. Louie and Cheryl will do just about anything for free T-shirts!
The Friday night banquet was attended by all. We had our own table, but were joined by two engineers, Josh and Angela, who happen to be married. Get this, since they are engineers they are “provided” Corvettes to drive on a regular basis, they just have to pay a small stipend for personal use. What a tough job. The drivers were present, talked about the races they have been through this season and the Corvette and how great it is to drive. Johnny O’Connell attended the banquet as well, even though he has gone over to drive for Cadillac racing. Cheryl had to talk with him, he is her favorite and Louie got a picture of them together.
It was overcast and cool (but not cold) on Friday until around time to go on the Parade Lap, then it was beautiful. On RACE DAY, Saturday, it was clear and sunny the entire day. The weather could not have been better, even when the wind came up it was not strong and not cold. The race was 6 hours long this year as it was last year. It is endurance racing to the max at Laguna Seca with the curves and sand, it makes the track very dry and difficult for control, but to our relief, no Corvette accident. The two Corvettes came in 5th and 6th place after a penalty was given to the car in front of them, they both moved up one position. Okay, it was not a win, but it was exciting to watch!
This year, lunch was provided by a Chevrolet sponsor and the Corvette Museum. It was a hot lunch of BBQ Chicken, corn on the cob, potato and green salads, baked beans, rolls, cookies and drinks.
After the race, the Santors left and went back to their hotel. It was a tiring day and we did not drive the cars? Not sure what the others did, but most had plans to travel home on Sunday. Russ Hicks mentioned he was going to watch the Cadillac race Sunday, which would have been on the Santors list, but they met up with relatives for a late lunch and to attend the last night of the Monterey Jazz Festival on Sunday. Traveled home Monday morning to beautiful weather on the 101, not to repeat the coast highway travel again.
The Redline Corvette Cub of Thousand Oaks received the most attended at the Corvette Corral with 13 cars attending. The couple coming the farthest were from Alberta, Canada. We met lots of nice Corvette owners from all over, even a guy who won a carbon Corvette from the Corvette Museum. He was glad he won as his Corvette had over 200,000 miles on it. By the way, he won with a single $300 ticket. He is from outside Denver, Co.
I hope more of you can attend next year and we can contend for the most attendance by a Corvette club.