2002
Friday
, August 23
Orange County Fair Grounds
Costa Mesa, California


What a Cool Day! It dawned bright & sunny and got better as the day went along. The vendors were wall to wall with so much good stuff it was amazing! The shady avenue made it really nice, and you could park you Mini any darn place you liked... except at the AutoCross Finish.

Steve Alexander designed a really nicely set up course that was a blast to watch. The finish was the best with a little jog at the end. Mini swerve sliding in sideways. Although Don Racine tried his best to repeat his Mini Challenge win over the Britax Cooper , the blazing performance of the Toon Town Taxi was absolutely flawless. He ran late in the day and his first run set the quickest time of the day, and then he just got better!

And it seemed the "Second " Drivers (usually their first time in a borrowed car) did better that the owners! My car, "Murphy" came in second, by only 2/100 of a second in class "D", while I was a full second behind and could only manage an 8th place!! Michael Spangler, "Spank" on the MM board, came in a hard fought 4th with some real Kamikaze finishes... it was probably his passenger, Mr. Bean, who distracted him. His new Bride kept the kids busy all day. Tomorrow she and Mike have them painting their own "Concours" Mini to enter in the "British Beater" Class! ( A true Project car if there ever was one no under aged driver required, as they will have to push it over to the show!)

And in the true Mini Spirit Heritage Garage came to the rescue of one of a Father Daughter team who had driven down from Pasadena . The thought they had blown the trans running the Autocross and the daughter was nearly in tears. The Dad was certain their weekend was now a bust and her teenage-sized auto budget was in ruins! Graham Reid and Bart Smith quickly figured out that a worn engine steady had managed to cause a bolt or two to work loose in the magic wand shifter. In less than 20 minutes they had the car sorted out and tooling around nicely. The Dad was even more amazed when he asked "How much do I owe you guys?" and the answer was "Nothing". Way to go Graham & Bart!!

Stay tuned. Tomorrow we Paint, Shine & Show, and, RC race... which was moved to Saturday because everyone was too busy watching the Autocross, Funkhana and shopping!

David Haight


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