All Four of them … Full of Hot Air


NASCAR Image Gallery High-speed cars need special tires for better handling and safety. See more NASCAR pictures. John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR

Heat has many effects on a high speed car tire. Many race car teams use nitrogen instead of air in their tires because nitrogen has a much more consistent rate of expansion and contraction compared to the usual air. Often, a half pound of pressure will radically affect traction and handling. With track and tire temperatures varying over the duration of a race, the consistency of nitrogen is needed.

Nitrogen pressure is more consistent than normal air pressure, because air typically contains varying amounts of moisture due to changes in the relative humidity on race day. Water causes air to be inconsistent in its rate of expansion and contraction. So, a humid race in the southeast United States or a dry race in the desert western United States could make for unpredictable tire pressures if “dry” nitrogen were not used.

Nitrogen is also used in the high-pressure tires on large and small aircraft.

Solo: Skyview High School, July 12, 2015

Event Chair – Chris Brewer, Safety Steward – J. Reuss

Final Results

Total Registered: 29, with Times: 28

Class#DriverCar ModelCar ColorTimes    Total
AS17Nathan Witt2008 Honda S2000Blue73.910+172.56472.46971.08170.60270.602
AS16XLuke Bonner2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1Black73.574+170.561+172.05471.88181.509+DNF71.881
AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT500Gray77.23775.43273.94783.91174.85973.947
AS16Rachel Sitzman2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1Black84.66572.480+DNF84.82881.43381.10481.104
BS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet CorvetteRed75.001+172.91372.303+DNF73.05379.648+DNF72.548
BS2Chuck Spoonheim1990 Chevrolet CorvetteSilver90.42191.04486.51292.91285.45385.271
CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350ZSilver76.69876.24374.89775.27975.54674.644
CS76Jarek Peila2014 Subaru BRZGray78.13377.50776.517+DNF78.87577.87877.507
FS27Dalton Garton1991 Chevrolet CamaroBlue100.79891.044+DNF86.72586.725
GS89Eddie Salcedo2007 VW RabbitRed84.43382.36981.84381.843
HS99Kevin Gerrells1995 Honda Del SolBlack83.33880.13179.56279.562
HS13Leland Schliep1979 MGBGreen115.944+DNF111.200101.515101.702+DNF100.10195.337
STS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda MiataRed72.88171.94872.12073.17171.78470.705
STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda MiataBlue74.694+173.89674.52350.174+DNF72.12672.126
STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda MiataBurgundy76.752+177.695+176.77877.36676.35076.350
STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-5Copper72.61472.92971.58272.11472.02371.582
STU2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet CamaroBlack76.433+174.283+173.82273.21774.41073.217
ASP23David Knox2011 Subaru WRXSilver86.110+183.52483.21083.210
CSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRXRed101.10079.80479.12178.35576.86776.867
CSP03Scott Hecker2003 Saleen MustangRed83.33381.83981.64081.124+179.84779.481
FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z28Orange82.483+179.76478.45377.43976.943+177.255
SMF43Randy Roberts1987 Honda Civic CRXWhite88.46674.85074.96373.13779.741+DNF72.053
SMF088Jim Arnett1987 Honda Civic CRXWhite74.20462.108+DNF72.98872.31472.314
SSM68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06White61.861+DNF75.603+DNF72.53870.98270.60570.605
EM69John Hailstone1932 Austin BantamYellow81.70679.46180.51680.78076.46276.462
EM715Wes Nelson1990 Ford RangerBlue78.122+DNF107.947+DNFDNF
HSL72Jackie Bell1999 Mitsubishi EclipseWhite82.37897.78481.08979.64879.73378.286
ASPL15Kaitlin Reuss2003 Chevrolet Corvette Z06Yellow78.54478.13071.490+DNF75.89974.87773.048
F125666James Papallo2002 Tony Kart Mitox74.073102.057+DNF73.97671.70268.71968.719
Top Times Of DayTime Class# Driver
Raw time68.719F125666James Papallo
Pax58.529AS17Nathan Witt
Street70.602AS17Nathan Witt
Touring70.705STS34Tucker Stewart
Street Prepared76.867CSP68Woody Jensen
Street Modified70.605SSM68John Bonner
Modified76.462EM69John Hailstone
Street Ladies78.286HSL72Jackie Bell
Street Prepared Ladies73.048ASPL15Kaitlin Reuss

Final Raw Time Results

Timed Entries: 28

Raw Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelRaw TimeDiff.From 1st
1mF125666James Papallo2002 Tony Kart Mitox68.7190.0000.000
2mAS17Nathan Witt2008 Honda S200070.6021.8831.883
3SSM68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0670.6050.0031.886
4mSTS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata70.7050.1001.986
5mSTR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-571.5820.8772.863
6AS16XLuke Bonner2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL171.8810.2993.162
7mSMF43Randy Roberts1987 Honda Civic CRX72.0530.1723.334
8mSTS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata72.1260.0733.407
9SMF088Jim Arnett1987 Honda Civic CRX72.3140.1883.595
10mBS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette72.5480.2343.829
11mASPL15Kaitlin Reuss2003 Chevrolet Corvette Z0673.0480.5004.329
12mSTU2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet Camaro73.2170.1694.498
13AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT50073.9470.7305.228
14mCS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z74.6440.6975.925
15mSTS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata76.3501.7067.631
16EM69John Hailstone1932 Austin Bantam76.4620.1127.743
17CSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRX76.8670.4058.148
18FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z2877.2550.3888.536
19mCS76Jarek Peila2014 Subaru BRZ77.5070.2528.788
20HSL72Jackie Bell1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse78.2860.7799.567
21CSP03Scott Hecker2003 Saleen Mustang79.4811.19510.762
22HS99Kevin Gerrells1995 Honda Del Sol79.5620.08110.843
23AS16Rachel Sitzman2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL181.1041.54212.385
24GS89Eddie Salcedo2007 VW Rabbit81.8430.73913.124
25ASP23David Knox2011 Subaru WRX83.2101.36714.491
26mBS2Chuck Spoonheim1990 Chevrolet Corvette85.2712.06116.552
27FS27Dalton Garton1991 Chevrolet Camaro86.7251.45418.006
28HS13Leland Schliep1979 MGB95.3378.61226.618
29EM715Wes Nelson1990 Ford RangerDNF

Pax Time Results

Timed Entries: 28

Pax Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelTotalFactorPax TimeDiff.From 1st
1AS17Nathan Witt2008 Honda S200070.602*0.82958.5290.0000.000
2STS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata70.705*0.82858.5430.0140.014
3AS16XLuke Bonner2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL171.881*0.82959.5891.0461.060
4STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata72.126*0.82859.7200.1311.191
5BS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette72.548*0.82659.9240.2041.395
6STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-571.582*0.83859.9850.0611.456
7CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z74.644*0.81460.7600.7752.231
8AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT50073.947*0.82961.3020.5422.773
9SMF43Randy Roberts1987 Honda Civic CRX72.053*0.85361.4610.1592.932
10SMF088Jim Arnett1987 Honda Civic CRX72.314*0.85361.6830.2223.154
11STU2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet Camaro73.217*0.84461.7950.1123.266
12SSM68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0670.605*0.88262.2730.4783.744
13HSL72Jackie Bell1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse78.286*0.79662.3150.0423.786
14CS76Jarek Peila2014 Subaru BRZ77.507*0.81463.0900.7754.561
15ASPL15Kaitlin Reuss2003 Chevrolet Corvette Z0673.048*0.86563.1860.0964.657
16STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata76.350*0.82863.2170.0314.688
17HS99Kevin Gerrells1995 Honda Del Sol79.562*0.79663.3310.1144.802
18FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z2877.255*0.84064.8941.5636.365
19GS89Eddie Salcedo2007 VW Rabbit81.843*0.80665.9651.0717.436
20CSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRX76.867*0.86166.1820.2177.653
21AS16Rachel Sitzman2015 Chevrolet Camaro ZL181.104*0.82967.2351.0538.706
22CSP03Scott Hecker2003 Saleen Mustang79.481*0.86168.4331.1989.904
23F125666James Papallo2002 Tony Kart Mitox68.719*1.00068.7190.28610.190
24FS27Dalton Garton1991 Chevrolet Camaro86.725*0.81070.2471.52811.718
25BS2Chuck Spoonheim1990 Chevrolet Corvette85.271*0.82670.4330.18611.904
26EM69John Hailstone1932 Austin Bantam76.462*0.92270.4980.06511.969
27ASP23David Knox2011 Subaru WRX83.210*0.86571.9761.47813.447
28HS13Leland Schliep1979 MGB95.337*0.79675.8883.91217.359
29EM715Wes Nelson1990 Ford RangerDNF*0.922

Cornering ABCs for speed and safety

The corner is where is counts.

The corner is where is counts.

Correct cornering requires a conscious and repeatable sequence of driver actions to properly enter and exit turns. This sequence must be smooth and flowing and requires regular practice to make it a habit. The sequence is as follows assuming turn entry from a straight section of the course. Take the next Driver’s Education in Lewistown with the Big Sky Region PCA.

LIFT — While driving in a straight line and looking ahead, smoothly lift off the throttle.

BRAKE — Smoothly and progressively apply the brakes in a straight line. Not all turns require use of the brakes.

DOWNSHIFT — Using heel-toe technique downshift to the appropriate gear to maintain torque to provide for acceleration out of the turn. Not all turns require downshifting.

OFF THE BRAKE — While looking ahead to the apex and beyond, smoothly release the brakes when you’re ready to turn in. You generally should not be braking while in the turn, and you want to have given your suspension a brief moment to settle before turning.

TURN IN — Practice ocular driving. Never look where you are. Always look ahead to the next point by physically turning your head. Slowly and smoothly turn the wheel to initiate the turn. Let your hands follow the eyes and use progressive steering.

ACCELERATE — After the turn is initiated smoothly, apply maintenance throttle and progressively increase as you pass the apex and begin to track out to the exit point.

TRACK OUT — As you pass the apex smoothly and progressively unwind the steering wheel. Let the car unwind to the exit point. This is not always needed. Your instructor will explain when and how.


  1.  Lift off the throttle
  2. On the brake
  3. Downshift
  4. Off the brake
  5. Turn in
  6. On the throttle
  7. Track out

Take the Course and get faster and safer

When you take the course, at the end of the run group, as you slowly return to the paddock, you’ll review the session with your instructor. You will dentify areas and skills you feel comfortable with as well as turns and skills you need to work on.

Be absolutely sure you have the course memorized turn by turn in order.

You’ll use the course map to review the session and talk yourself through each turn over and over. Lift, brake, downshift, off the brake, turn in, on the throttle, track-out. You’ll practice visualizing every turn in order and include any improvements needed … memorize one perfect lap after another. You’ll recognize mistakes and visualize a perfect lap.

Solo: Services of America II (FSA II) June 28, 2015

Event Chair – Chris Brewer, Safety Steward – J. Reuss

Final Results

Total Registered: 19, with Times: 19

Class#DriverCar ModelCar ColorTimes    Total
AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT500Gray59.521+157.63455.08855.68555.47454.375
BS3Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet CorvetteRed55.739+DNF54.59554.29854.26754.94054.203
CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350ZSilver56.74455.824+155.20755.35656.10154.490
FS607Luke Bonner2015 Chevrolet CamaroOrange57.29555.833+156.76351.080+DNF56.57055.368
GS5Tyler Cook2015 Ford Taurus SHOBronze83.837+170.46163.94959.567+DNF59.34957.465
STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda MiataPapa Smurf Blue53.77253.03353.24952.039+152.42652.400
STS134Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda MiataRed54.56853.08952.97753.19253.10652.727
STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda MiataBurgundy57.52756.11055.245+255.61355.54055.169
STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-5Copper54.22453.52153.37153.40652.32552.325
STU333Jim Coons2004 Subaru WRX STIGreen57.720+157.86156.54455.31755.51555.317
SSP68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06White62.107+DNF52.801+160.887+DNF62.152+158.227+151.094
ESP24Dean Herrboldt1990 Ford Mustang LXWhite57.29556.41455.32455.35855.45455.324
FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z28Orange63.42360.048+157.139+157.41956.801+257.419
SMF808Ryan ZahnAcura IntegraBlack56.68857.37056.58558.87758.94756.585
SM70XDavid Greenfield2015 Mitsubishi Lancer EvolutionWhite54.29356.98553.14652.86552.96751.880
SM2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet CamaroBlack61.92861.37459.80462.42761.27354.438
FSL16Rachel Sitzman2012 Mercedes C300Black63.409+DNF60.96561.59561.23162.478+DNF59.931
GSL03Pat Reuss2013 Fiat Abarth 500Black68.776+165.85564.605+164.22864.287+DNF64.228
STSL34Kendra Branch1996 Mazda MiataRed62.096+DNF57.12257.18857.43357.36056.659


Top Times Of DayTime ClassDriver
Raw time51.094SSPJohn Bonner
Pax43.387STSChris Brewer
Street54.203BSSteve Gruver
Touring52.325STRDean Johnson
Street Prepared51.094SSPJohn Bonner
Street Modified51.880SMDavid Greenfield
Street Ladies59.931FSLRachel Sitzman
Touring Ladies56.659STSLKendra Branch


Final Raw Time Results

Timed Entries: 19


Raw Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelRaw TimeDiff.From 1st
1SSP68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0651.0940.0000.000
2SM70XDavid Greenfield2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution51.8800.7860.786
3mSTR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-552.3250.4451.231
4mSTS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata52.4000.0751.306
5mSTS134Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata52.7270.3271.633
6mBS3Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette54.2031.4763.109
7AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT50054.3750.1723.281
8mSM2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet Camaro54.4380.0633.344
9mCS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z54.4900.0523.396
10mSTS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata55.1690.6794.075
11mSTU333Jim Coons2004 Subaru WRX STI55.3170.1484.223
12ESP24Dean Herrboldt1990 Ford Mustang LX55.3240.0074.230
13FS607Luke Bonner2015 Chevrolet Camaro55.3680.0444.274
14SMF808Ryan ZahnAcura Integra56.5851.2175.491
15STSL34Kendra Branch1996 Mazda Miata56.6590.0745.565
16FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z2857.4190.7606.325
17GS5Tyler Cook2015 Ford Taurus SHO57.4650.0466.371
18FSL16Rachel Sitzman2012 Mercedes C30059.9312.4668.837
19mGSL03Pat Reuss2013 Fiat Abarth 50064.2284.29713.134

Pax Time Results

Timed Entries: 19

Pax Pos.Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelTotalFactorPax TimeDiff.From 1st
1STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata52.400*0.82843.3870.0000.000
2STS134Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata52.727*0.82843.6580.2710.271
3STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-552.325*0.83843.8480.1900.461
4CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z54.490*0.81444.3540.5060.967
5SSP68John Bonner2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0651.094*0.87144.5020.1481.115
6BS3Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette54.203*0.82644.7710.2691.384
7FS607Luke Bonner2015 Chevrolet Camaro55.368*0.81044.8480.0771.461
8AS13Riley Kelly2013 Shelby GT50054.375*0.82945.0760.2281.689
9SM70XDavid Greenfield2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution51.880*0.87045.1350.0591.748
10STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata55.169*0.82845.6790.5442.292
11GS5Tyler Cook2015 Ford Taurus SHO57.465*0.80646.3160.6372.929
12STU333Jim Coons2004 Subaru WRX STI55.317*0.84446.6870.3713.300
13STSL34Kendra Branch1996 Mazda Miata56.659*0.82846.9130.2263.526
14ESP24Dean Herrboldt1990 Ford Mustang LX55.324*0.84946.9700.0573.583
15SM2Jerod Staebler2000 Chevrolet Camaro54.438*0.87047.3610.3913.974
16FSP68Brandon Smith2002 Chevrolet Camaro Z2857.419*0.84048.2320.8714.845
17SMF808Ryan ZahnAcura Integra56.585*0.85348.2670.0354.880
18FSL16Rachel Sitzman2012 Mercedes C30059.931*0.81048.5440.2775.157
19GSL03Pat Reuss2013 Fiat Abarth 50064.228*0.80651.7673.2238.380


Solo: Skyview High School, June 7, Billings, MT

Event Chair – J. Reuss, Safety Steward – Chris Brewer

Final Results

Total Registered: 22, with Times: 22

Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelCar ColorTimes    Total
1TAS10Sayler, Nate2010 Chevrolet CamaroOrange78.68476.50675.43377.38983.75574.336
2AS13Kelly, Riley2013 Shelby GT500Gray84.598+DNF80.22880.544+DNF79.79078.61978.028
1TmBS3Gruver, Steve1986 Chevrolet CorvetteRed68.042+DNF76.108+275.52475.73774.23874.238
2BS19Jensen, Dexter2008 BMW M6Blue61.161+DNF78.834+DNF80.244+DNF78.29078.290
3 mBS111Groeling, Chris2013 Nissan 370ZSilver92.13483.773+DNF82.55482.82982.08378.947
1TmCS76Peila, Jarek2014 Subaru BRZGray82.51180.60179.96677.30780.82176.352
2 mCS51Reuss, James2006 Nissan 350ZSilver79.69378.38778.07878.23576.53976.532
1TmDS9Boettger, Orry2015 VW Golf RSilver62.382+DNF76.19174.37361.833+DNF74.12273.145
1TGS24Dietrich, Joel1986 Ford MustangBlack140.01591.75595.13191.755
1TmHS42Caudill, Ben2002 Dodge IntrepidSilver28.755+DNF82.915+183.80184.33483.801
2HS64Thompson, Arthur1968 Triumph SpitfireRed94.74693.89194.21490.32490.37289.393
1TmSTS34Stewart, Tucker1996 Mazda MiataRed59.260+DNF75.06674.84373.76074.73072.837
2TmSTS73Brewer, Chris1997 Mazda MiataBlue75.48073.97473.82973.85873.615+173.061
3 mSTS38Gruver, Joel2003 Mazda MiataBurgundy77.32580.38782.42480.34578.25376.388
4STS113Wietech, Thomas1990 Mazda Miatared174.91279.74079.643+178.368+277.24077.240
1TmSTR74Johnson, Dean2009 Mazda MX-5Copper75.980+175.99474.25574.88273.99772.618
1TmSTU2Staebler, Jerod2000 Chevy CamaroBlack82.266+282.68779.50878.87377.798+177.185
1TCSP03Hecker, Scott2003 Saleen MustangRed92.48390.85486.32287.53385.88482.433
1TSSR68XBonner, Luke2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06White75.44172.389+171.23471.21370.67170.671
2SSR68Bonner, John2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06White80.938+276.191+174.021+151.149+DNF76.22673.011
1TSSM999Miller, Jerett1984 Ford MustangYellow83.68782.39281.51780.13282.33479.247
1THSL72Bell, Jackie1999 MItsubishi EclipseWhite83.09682.898+182.35381.52381.10880.413


Top Times Of DayTime Class# Driver
Raw time70.671SSR68XBonner, Luke
Pax59.393DS9Boettger, Orry
Street73.145DS9Boettger, Orry
Touring72.618STR74Johnson, Dean
Street Prepared82.433CSP03Hecker, Scott
Street R70.671SSR68XBonner, Luke
Street Modified79.247SSM999Miller, Jerett
Street Ladies80.413HSL72Bell, Jackie

Final Raw Time Results

Timed Entries: 22

Raw Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelRaw TimeDiff.From 1st
1SSR68XBonner, Luke2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0670.6710.0000.000
2mSTR74Johnson, Dean2009 Mazda MX-572.6181.9471.947
3mSTS34Stewart, Tucker1996 Mazda Miata72.8370.2192.166
4SSR68Bonner, John2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0673.0110.1742.340
5mSTS73Brewer, Chris1997 Mazda Miata73.0610.0502.390
6mDS9Boettger, Orry2015 VW Golf R73.1450.0842.474
7mBS3Gruver, Steve1986 Chevrolet Corvette74.2381.0933.567
8AS10Sayler, Nate2010 Chevrolet Camaro74.3360.0983.665
9mCS76Peila, Jarek2014 Subaru BRZ76.3522.0165.681
10mSTS38Gruver, Joel2003 Mazda Miata76.3880.0365.717
11mCS51Reuss, James2006 Nissan 350Z76.5320.1445.861
12mSTU2Staebler, Jerod2000 Chevy Camaro77.1850.6536.514
13STS113Wietech, Thomas1990 Mazda Miata77.2400.0556.569
14AS13Kelly, Riley2013 Shelby GT50078.0280.7887.357
15BS19Jensen, Dexter2008 BMW M678.2900.2627.619
16mBS111Groeling, Chris2013 Nissan 370Z78.9470.6578.276
17SSM999Miller, Jerett1984 Ford Mustang79.2470.3008.576
18HSL72Bell, Jackie1999 MItsubishi Eclipse80.4131.1669.742
19CSP03Hecker, Scott2003 Saleen Mustang82.4332.02011.762
20mHS42Caudill, Ben2002 Dodge Intrepid83.8011.36813.130
21HS64Thompson, Arthur1968 Triumph Spitfire89.3935.59218.722
22GS24Dietrich, Joel1986 Ford Mustang91.7552.36221.084

Pax Time Results

Timed Entries: 22

Pax Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelTotalFactorPax TimeDiff.From 1st
1DS9Boettger, Orry2015 VW Golf R73.145*0.81259.3930.0000.000
2STS34Stewart, Tucker1996 Mazda Miata72.837*0.82860.3090.9160.916
3STS73Brewer, Chris1997 Mazda Miata73.061*0.82860.4940.1851.101
4SSR68XBonner, Luke2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0670.671*0.85960.7060.2121.313
5STR74Johnson, Dean2009 Mazda MX-572.618*0.83860.8530.1471.460
6BS3Gruver, Steve1986 Chevrolet Corvette74.238*0.82661.3200.4671.927
7AS10Sayler, Nate2010 Chevrolet Camaro74.336*0.82961.6240.3042.231
8CS76Peila, Jarek2014 Subaru BRZ76.352*0.81462.1500.5262.757
9CS51Reuss, James2006 Nissan 350Z76.532*0.81462.2970.1472.904
10SSR68Bonner, John2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z0673.011*0.85962.7160.4193.323
11STS38Gruver, Joel2003 Mazda Miata76.388*0.82863.2490.5333.856
12STS113Wietech, Thomas1990 Mazda Miata77.240*0.82863.9540.7054.561
13HSL72Bell, Jackie1999 MItsubishi Eclipse80.413*0.79664.0080.0544.615
14BS19Jensen, Dexter2008 BMW M678.290*0.82664.6670.6595.274
15AS13Kelly, Riley2013 Shelby GT50078.028*0.82964.6850.0185.292
16STU2Staebler, Jerod2000 Chevy Camaro77.185*0.84465.1440.4595.751
17BS111Groeling, Chris2013 Nissan 370Z78.947*0.82665.2100.0665.817
18HS42Caudill, Ben2002 Dodge Intrepid83.801*0.79666.7051.4957.312
19SSM999Miller, Jerett1984 Ford Mustang79.247*0.88269.8953.19010.502
20CSP03Hecker, Scott2003 Saleen Mustang82.433*0.86170.9741.07911.581
21HS64Thompson, Arthur1968 Triumph Spitfire89.393*0.79671.1560.18211.763
22GS24Dietrich, Joel1986 Ford Mustang91.755*0.80673.9542.79814.561


Solo & Big Sky Corvette Meet: Rimrock Auto Truck Center, May 24, Billings, MT

Event Chair – Steve Gruver, Safety Steward – J. Reuss

Summary Results

Timed Entries: 19

Pos.#DriverTotalDiff.From 1st
1 – ‘C1-C4’ Total Entries: 5
1T64Markesun, Anthony55.803[-]5.041
2T63Markuson, Duane60.844+5.041+5.041
32Spoonheim, Chuck63.901+3.057+8.098
411Wilsun, BruceDNF+63.901+63.901
550Peters, PeteDNF+63.901+63.901
1L – ‘C1-C4 (Ladies)’ Total Entries: 2
1T83Wing Spooner, Elizabeth53.939[-]5.714
284Meeks, Cassidy59.653+5.714+5.714
2 – ‘C5’ Total Entries: 3
1T72Hogan, AlDNF
240Wanner, BrianDNF+0.000+0.000
373Lehrsch, GaryDNF+0.000+0.000
3 – ‘C6-C7’ Total Entries: 6
1T39Boldt, Gary51.691[-]6.042
2T5XSpranget, Gene57.733+6.042+6.042
376Zella, Jerry58.021+0.288+6.330
420Kehrwald, Larry68.735+10.714+17.044
530XCavanagh, TonyDNF+68.735+68.735
62XSekora, DaveDNS
3L – ‘C6-C7 (Ladies)’ Total Entries: 4
1T6Spranget, Wytni56.033[-]1.946
2T86Gollehon, Michelle57.979+1.946+1.946
35Markuson, Patti60.085+2.106+4.052
415Markuson, Sara61.571+1.486+5.538
4 – ‘Z06’ Total Entries: 6
1T1Cox, Tim47.936[-]0.075
2T30Hagestad, Mike48.011+0.075+0.075
321Hagestad, Steve49.987+1.976+2.051
468Bonner, John53.598+3.611+5.662
548Close, Kelly54.248+0.650+6.312
610Fichtner, KenDNS
5 – ‘Modified’ Total Entries: 2
1T85Gollehon, Gordon50.944
269Sayler, NateDNF+50.944+50.944

Final Results

Total Registered: 28, with Times: 19

Class#DriverTimes  Total
164Markesun, Anthony62.59557.70455.80355.803
163Markuson, Duane60.84461.84367.72460.844
12Spoonheim, Chuck70.038+DNF65.205+DNF63.90163.901
111Wilsun, Bruce61.625+DNF65.548+DNF56.230+DNFDNF
150Peters, Pete57.914+DNF55.869+DNF54.616+DNFDNF
1L83Wing Spooner, Elizabeth59.01457.61753.93953.939
1L84Meeks, Cassidy55.653+253.809+DNF55.732+DNF59.653
339Boldt, Gary60.515+DNF52.26151.69151.691
35XSpranget, Gene62.01757.73359.72657.733
376Zella, Jerry69.129+DNF57.461+DNF58.02158.021
320Kehrwald, Larry113.047+DNF68.73564.200+DNF68.735
330XCavanagh, Tony35.246+DNF66.534+DNF55.814+DNFDNF
32XSekora, DaveDNS
3L6Spranget, Wytni61.63956.30954.033+156.033
3L86Gollehon, Michelle70.83260.43357.97957.979
3L5Markuson, Patti74.684+DNF67.65660.08560.085
3L15Markuson, Sara83.42567.95861.57161.571
41Cox, Tim50.67749.51847.93647.936
430Hagestad, Mike50.857+149.23048.01148.011
421Hagestad, Steve56.586+152.08949.98749.987
468Bonner, John35.600+DNF53.59852.492+153.598
448Close, Kelly54.66051.395+DNF52.248+154.248
410Fichtner, KenDNS
585Gollehon, Gordon50.94453.898+DNF49.945+DNF50.944
569Sayler, Nate56.451+DNFDNF


Top Times Of DayTime ClassDriver
Raw time (men)47.9364Cox, Tim
Raw time (women)53.9391LWing Spooner, Elizabeth

Final Raw Time Results

Timed Entries: 19

Raw Pos.Class#DriverRaw TimeDiff.From 1st
141Cox, Tim47.9360.0000.000
2430Hagestad, Mike48.0110.0750.075
3421Hagestad, Steve49.9871.9762.051
4585Gollehon, Gordon50.9440.9573.008
5339Boldt, Gary51.6910.7473.755
6468Bonner, John53.5981.9075.662
71L83Wing Spooner, Elizabeth53.9390.3416.003
8448Close, Kelly54.2480.3096.312
9164Markesun, Anthony55.8031.5557.867
103L6Spranget, Wytni56.0330.2308.097
1135XSpranget, Gene57.7331.7009.797
123L86Gollehon, Michelle57.9790.24610.043
13376Zella, Jerry58.0210.04210.085
141L84Meeks, Cassidy59.6531.63211.717
153L5Markuson, Patti60.0850.43212.149
16163Markuson, Duane60.8440.75912.908
173L15Markuson, Sara61.5710.72713.635
1812Spoonheim, Chuck63.9012.33015.965
19320Kehrwald, Larry68.7354.83420.799
20111Wilsun, BruceDNF
21150Peters, PeteDNF
25330XCavanagh, TonyDNF
26569Sayler, NateDNF
2732XSekora, DaveDNS
28410Fichtner, KenDNS


Solo: Food Service of America, April 26, Billings, MT

Event Chair – Chris Brewer, Safety Steward – J. Reuss

Final Results

Total Registered: 16, with Times: 15

Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelCar ColorTimes    Total
1TmBS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet CorvetteRed49.97049.81549.815
1TmCS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350ZSilver49.782+DNF50.75950.30050.300
2 mCS76Varek Peila2014 Subaru BRZGray85.806+DNF51.22650.66550.665
1TDS00Orry Boettger2015 VW Golf RSilver46.33645.92545.925
1TmFS02Mark Francis2003 Mustang CobraRed97.230+DNF54.20153.02653.026
2 mFS13Michael Ros2010 Chevrolet CamaroOrange59.35955.70754.81254.812
3 mFS03Arthur Thompson1968 Triumph SpitfireRed52.015+DNF60.65958.96758.967
1TmSTS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda MiataGreen52.789+DNF50.808+150.405+148.94549.60747.946
2TmSTS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda MiataRed49.82549.41949.14049.00448.80948.051
3STS13Thomas Wieteck1990 Mazda MiataRed50.817+DNF51.50151.87850.301+150.71950.719
4STS43Jason Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRXBlue55.497+DNF52.103+DNF51.64151.641
5 mSTS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda MiataBurgundy55.615+DNF53.09153.47155.13354.00352.020
6STS1Kobi Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRXBlue52.85452.52257.808+DNF53.34454.13152.522
1TmSTR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-5Copper49.78047.77048.83248.49248.23047.597
1TmCSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRXRed3.176+DNF51.457+167.512+DNF14.387+DNF53.457


Top Times Of DayTime Class# Driver
Raw time45.925DS00Orry Boettger
Pax37.291DS00Orry Boettger
Street45.925DS00Orry Boettger
Touring47.597STR74Dean Johnson
Street Prepared53.457CSP68Woody Jensen

Final Raw Time Results

Timed Entries: 15

Raw Pos.Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelRaw TimeDiff.From 1st
11DS00Orry Boettger2015 VW Golf R45.9250.0000.000
2m1STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-547.5971.6721.672
3m1STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata47.9460.3492.021
4m2STS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata48.0510.1052.126
5m1BS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette49.8151.7643.890
6m1CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z50.3000.4854.375
7m2CS76Varek Peila2014 Subaru BRZ50.6650.3654.740
83STS13Thomas Wieteck1990 Mazda Miata50.7190.0544.794
94STS43Jason Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRX51.6410.9225.716
10m5STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata52.0200.3796.095
116STS1Kobi Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRX52.5220.5026.597
12m1FS02Mark Francis2003 Mustang Cobra53.0260.5047.101
13m1CSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRX53.4570.4317.532
14m2FS13Michael Ros2010 Chevrolet Camaro54.8121.3558.887
15m3FS03Arthur Thompson1968 Triumph Spitfire58.9674.15513.042


Pax Time Results

Timed Entries: 15


Pax Pos.Pos.Class#DriverCar ModelTotalFactorPax TimeDiff.From 1st
11DS00Orry Boettger2015 VW Golf R45.925*0.81237.2910.0000.000
21STS73Chris Brewer1997 Mazda Miata47.946*0.82839.6992.4082.408
32STS34Tucker Stewart1996 Mazda Miata48.051*0.82839.7860.0872.495
41STR74Dean Johnson2009 Mazda MX-547.597*0.83839.8860.1002.595
51CS51James Reuss2006 Nissan 350Z50.300*0.81440.9441.0583.653
61BS33Steve Gruver1986 Chevrolet Corvette49.815*0.82641.1470.2033.856
72CS76Varek Peila2014 Subaru BRZ50.665*0.81441.2410.0943.950
83STS13Thomas Wieteck1990 Mazda Miata50.719*0.82841.9950.7544.704
94STS43Jason Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRX51.641*0.82842.7580.7635.467
101FS02Mark Francis2003 Mustang Cobra53.026*0.81042.9510.1935.660
115STS38Joel Gruver2003 Mazda Miata52.020*0.82843.0720.1215.781
126STS1Kobi Hudson1984 Honda Civic CRX52.522*0.82843.4880.4166.197
132FS13Michael Ros2010 Chevrolet Camaro54.812*0.81044.3970.9097.106
141CSP68Woody Jensen1990 Honda CRX53.457*0.86146.0261.6298.735
153FS03Arthur Thompson1968 Triumph Spitfire58.967*0.81047.7631.73710.472




Pat and Jay at Exotics Racing Las Vegas (Happy 60th Birthday, Jay!)

The “Team” surprised me at my 60th birthday party with a gift certificate from Exotics Racing in Las Vegas.  Exotics Racing bills itself as “an exotic car racing school in Las Vegas where you can drive a fleet of Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Aston Martins, Porsches, McLarens, Audis, Corvettes, and Nissans on a race track.” Located adjacent to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway and The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (the NHRA drag strip in Las Vegas), Exotics Racing has a dedicated road course and 14 truly exotic cars to choose from.  It’s a gear head’s dream!

  • The facility, open 7 days a week, is approximately 15 miles NE of the Las Vegas Strip.

The facility, open 7 days a week, is approximately 15 miles NE of the Las Vegas Strip.  If you are staying on the Strip, it is best to use a limousine or Exotics Racing’s shuttle service rather than taking a cab.  If you will be racing more than one car, plan on being there for around 2 hours.  In the photo below looking east, the west grandstands of Las Vegas Motor Speedway are visible.

It was good my “team” was large because when they pooled their money, they were able to afford an “Extreme Driving Experience Package.” An Extreme Package allows you to choose from 14 different experiences which vary based on the number and type(s) of cars you select and how many laps you can drive.  The most seat time is 17 laps in a single-car package with a Mercedes SLS AMG, Aston Martin Vantage, Nissan GTR, or an Audi R8 V10.  At the opposite end of the spectrum, a three-car combo package includes 5 laps per car.  After much deliberation, I ultimately chose “Combo 3” which included a Ferrari 430F1, a Lamborghini Gallardo, and a Nissan GTR.  Each package includes classroom instruction, a “discovery lap” with a professional racing instructor in a Porsche Cayenne GTS, and your own racing experience with an in-car professional instructor.  For an additional charge, you can receive an on-board video of your driving experience including telemetry.

The first car to arrive was their top-of-the-line, lime-green Lamborghini Aventador LP700 (MSRP $400,000+, 700 HP, AWD, 6.5L V12, 7-speed semi-automatic–not dual clutch, but shifts are accomplished in 50 milliseconds.)  At that point, I knew we were not in Montana anymore.

One by one, other cars began to appear.  Most drivers took a few warm-up laps around the track, and the sound was incredible.  Soon the tented paddock was filled with exotic cars of every color and configuration. Patrons were allowed full access to the cars for picture taking, sitting in, and just plain drooling over.

Promptly at 9:45 a.m., the classroom instruction began with a brief, yet thorough, introduction for drivers and guests as to what to expect and how to get the most out of the cars.  A diagram of the proper racing line was explained and information provided regarding the marking of braking points, turn-in points, apex points, and turn-out points.  The drivers were of all
ages and from as far away as Australia.  At the end of the classroom session, various enhancements were offered at discount rates to add laps or
vehicles; the two-for-one discount for additional laps is something I would highly recommend.  As the instructor predicted, it takes most of the 5-lap basic package to learn the course and the car.  The additional 2 or 4 laps allow you to really have fun and lower your lap times.

We then got in small groups to take our “discovery lap” in a Porsche Cayenne where the instructor reinforced what we had just learned in the classroom about the proper driving line and the various cones marking braking points, apexes, etc.

After returning from our discovery lap, we were herded back into the building for helmets and assignment to the instructor for the cars we had chosen.  It was recommended that we choose the “half helmets” if we were taller or driving small-cockpit cars such as the Lamborghinis.

I had decided to first drive the Ferrari F430F1, the least powerful of the three Ferrraris offered by Exotics Racing with a 4.3L V8 and 490hp at 8,500 rpm.  MSRP is approximately $220,000. The next step up is the F430 Scuderia which is rated at 510hp, and topping the list is the F458 Italia with a 4.5L V8 featuring 560hp. The Scuderia and the F458 both have MSRPs of approximately $300,000.  It didn’t take too long to settle into the Ferrari and learn the location of the important controls. All cars at Exotics Racing are automatics that can be operated either by paddle shifters or as fully automatic.  Take it from me, the paddle shifters are great.  No clutches to engage or revs to match–just shift up or down.
After a little light banter with the instructor, I engaged first gear and headed out of the pits.

In the classroom session, we were told not to look at the speedometer, tach, or anything else on the dash–we were to focus on where we were supposed to go.  We were to shift by “sound” or at the direction of the instructor.  Drivers proceed to the entry point of the track and await the instructor’s signal to go.  I had never used a paddle shifter before, but I got used to them pretty quickly.  The only time I messed up was when I attempted to downshift the Nissan GTR by pulling in on the turn signal lever at the end of the main straight.  (Note the video
cameras mounted adjacent to the rear-view mirror in the photo below.)

The F430F1 has a curb weight of 3,197 pounds, just a bit more than my Z06.  The mid-engine car was well balanced and went wherever I pointed it without protest.  The brakes were incredible, but the instructors got a little edgy if you blew past the braking cones without starting your deceleration.  Even though they were not V-12s, the Ferraris had the sweetest sounding exhaust systems!  Taking the Ferrari first proved to be a good decision.  The instructor indicated that I could have gotten more speed out of the car, but I was shifting too early.  I told him my Z06 redline was quite a bit less than the Ferrari’s 8,500 rpm.

When I finished driving the Ferrari, I returned to the building to find the “Team Owner” who was putting my new digital camera through its paces.  Five race laps in a quarter-million dollar Ferrari had definitely “got my motor running” and immediately I was asked, “what car do you want to drive next?”  I had thought I would have to wait in line until
other cars were freed up, but that was not the case.  I decided to relax a bit and have a drink of water while throttling back the adrenaline.

It didn’t take too long to get the itch for my next car, a Lamborghini Gallardo LP550.  Exotics Racing features three Lamborghini models, the Aventador mentioned above, the LP550 and the Superleggera LP570. The Gallardo LP550 is a 5.2L V10 with 550hp at 8,000 rpm, while the Superleggera is a racier version of the Gallardo with 570hp.  MSRPs for these two beauties are $245,000 and $265,000, respectively.

Driving the Lamborghini was fantastic.  It is the same weight as the Ferrari, but has 60 more hp and the sound of the V10 was not as loud as the Ferrari, but sweeter.  I set my fastest lap times of the three cars in the Lamborghini which gave me the impression it would do anything I asked it to do–again, without complaint of any kind.  It was completely comfortable to add steering or acceleration at any point through a corner as the car was very predictable and stable.  (No wonder Justin Bieber drives a Gallardo!) It was with great reluctance that I parked the Lambo and turned off the ignition.

The last car I drove was the Nissan GT-R “Godzilla.” The AWD 3.8L Twin-Turbo V6 530hp beast was a car I have wanted to drive for a long time.  The least expensive of the cars I had chosen (MSRP $115,000), I was certain it would deliver nonetheless.  The other instructors had cautioned me that the Nissan was heavier and would have to be driven accordingly.  At 3,820 lbs, there was a noticeable difference, but the GT-R is no Crown Victoria.  At the end of the day, the Nissan beat my best lap time in the Ferrari, but to be fair, I should have taken the Ferrari out one more time to be sure.  The GT-R is a strong-pulling beast, but it has some body roll and it takes a little more effort to haul down; see photo of the front brakes after my runs.  No doubt about it, I still love the GT-R.

After climbing out of the GT-R, I located the “Team Owner” who informed me that after giving it a great deal of thought, she had narrowed her choice of cars down to the Mercedes SLS AMD (6.2L V8, 563hp, MSRP $201,500) or the Audi R8 V10 (525hp Lamborghini V10 AWD, MSRP $190,000).

Not having much coin left in my pockets, instead I purchased a $99 ride-along “drifting experience” for her in a 505hp Z06. The Filipino driver, Rudy Ibanez, is currently a factory drift pilot in the US and Japan for Weld Racing.  She told him, “Go faster!” through the 90 mph drifts, and she told me, “I want to do that 100 more times!” when she emerged from 2 laps in the Vette.

How do you finish a day like that?  At In-and-Out Burger, of course!

Can’t wait until next time……..


Region Loses One of its Best: Dwight Gilliland

Dwight Gilliland

Dwight Gilliland

Dwight Gilliland passed away on February 21, 2014, at age 61, after a long battle with chronic health issues.  Godspeed, Dwight!

Below is Dwight’s YSCCA Profile while he was with us

My introduction to sports cars came when I was 4 or 5 years old, living in California. A college student who was renting a room from us would occasionally take me for a ride in his MG TD. Ten years later in Billings, MT, I was racing off-road in a dune buggy I had built. Two members of the local sports car club came to one of our off-road meetings to invite us to an autocross. Two weeks after that, I got my driver’s license, lowered my car, and took my first turn around a pylon. Life has not been “normal” since.
Another ten years and I was still autocrossing all over Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and South Dakota in everything from a Bugeye Sprite to a Lamborghini. I was also road racing in cars ranging from a Caldwell Formula Ford to a McLaren-Matich Can-Am.

At that point, my sponsors and banks decided that I should try a different job and I couldn’t come up with a good counterargument. Still obsessed with speed, I went to work for other race teams. It has been my good fortune to work for teams running under various sanctioning bodies all over the world. I’ve done stints as a mechanic, crew chief, fabricator, and occasionally, driver.

After many years of listing “Holiday Inn” as my permanent address, Billings, MT, called me back home.

My second attempt at building a dedicated autocross car resulted in the “Avenger.” The “Avenger” has taken me to two 4ths, a 5th, and a 10th at SCCA Solo Nationals, and resulted in a National Championship for my wife, Kristi. I also set new overall records at various events sanctioned by the Northwest Hillclimb Association.

Kristi and I are now driving a Lotus Elan, Subaru WRX, and a dog sled.

>My thanks to our sport for a unique lifestyle and all the friends that have come with it.

Year End Party and Award Ceremony

The winners of the Dick Hager Memorial “Spirit of the Sport” award and the Grant Cameron Memorial “Driver of the Year” award were announced at the Region’s Year-End Party at The Windmill Restaurant on February 1, 2014.  In the photo above, Regional Executive Chris Brewer awards the “Spirit of the Sport” award to Dean Johnson and the “Driver of the Year” award to Ben Caudill.  The party was well-attended despite the chilly weather.  Everyone in attendance appeared to have a great time!