TOM IMHOLZ 2017-06-21 03:40:43
This year marked the silver anniversary of the “Yokohama/Tire Rack/ Windy City BMW Challenge”. Yep, 25 years. Some of you have been to all of them, and some of you weren’t even born when it started. It is a remarkable achievement that speaks to the quality of the people at the club, Tire Rack, and Yokohama. This year we raised $1915 for BMW CCA Foundation; $1390 for GiGi's Playhouse and $2438 for NIFB - a grand total of $5743!! All of you are why this event exists and continues to prosper. Give yourselves a pat on the back. Go ahead, I’ll wait. Let’s get this out there right now; we will be back for the 26th running June 2nd & 3rd, 2018. Mark your calendars! Back to this years’ edition. It started with the now traditional Dumpster Dinner put on by Speed Wrench Racing. There was so much food, if you went away hungry, it was your own fault. Thanks SWR for hosting! The weekend was nice and warm, and on Saturday the folks who were there all day got in 10 “official” runs plus a number of fun runs at the end of the day as well. Thanks, as always, to Robin and Andre for cooking up the brats and dogs. Apparently, they decided that wasn’t enough, so Andre brought chicken legs and Robin brought onions to grill also. It was definitely a lunch-time feast. Continuing with the food theme, the Road Kill Grille was back, with Matt Edmonds and Greg Bernheisel manning the grill and the caterers serving up the sides. The food was delicious and plentiful, as always. Two people very important to the club in general, and the Challenge in particular, passed away since we were last together, Wilma Veldman, widow of Tire Rack founder Pete Veldman, passed away in December, and Dean Killian, the club member who created the Challenge 25 years ago, passed away in May. Matt made a beautiful and heart-felt speech about the impact these folks had and how the club and Tire Rack is really one big family, and that these family reunions, so to speak, are very special times. As usual, there were prizes to give out, courtesy of Yokohama, The Tire Rack, and Considine Sales. Here is a list of the winners, with pictures to be found on our website: Eibach Pro Kit: Andre Sneed Eibach Sportline Kit: Nick Feigen Stop Tech Brake pads: Ryan Yaggie, Robin Blair Tumblers: Collin Feldman, Justin Everson, Clint Whiteway, John Herr, and James Graff Back Pack: Ben Rogut, Ralph Erber, Holly Chapman, and Graig Neville Yokohama BMW M3 car model: Kelsey Watts $75 Yokohama e-store gift cards: Zornitsa Kirilova and Holly Chapman $100 Yokohama e-store gift card: Thomas Biederstadt Yokohama Set of Tires: Holly Chapman (this set was a special give away only to those who had Yokohama tires on their car and indicated that on their registration forms) Wheels from Considine Sales: Leo Kneip Yokohama Tires: Alexander Kahl (this set was open to all participants who paid and attended) Tire Rack Wheels: Mike Linko Sunday dawned as another beautiful day, but unfortunately the timing gremlins bit us once again. That delayed the start a bit, but I really mention this in order to thank Pete and Sandy Aument, who made not one, but two trips to the store to pick up first a very long Ethernet cable, and then a battery for the display boards. Everyone got 8 runs, so including Saturday, it was a full weekend. In AA, Jeff Kumler, Dimitre Dimitrov, and Kevin Kazmierski were separated by barely more than 1/10th of a second, with Jeff coming out on top in the closest fight. In A, Robin Blair took 1st, with a little more breathing room over Kevin Satoh and Joe Kneip. B class had over 20 entries, with Spas Dramaliev beating out Leo Kneip and Bradley Elliot. Spas also won FTD with a PAX time of 39.782. Rich Chapman took C, over Collin Feldman and Norm Hezlep. D class redefined what an autocross car is with Randy Everson winning in an X1, Ben Rogut 2nd in a 528i, and Dave Herr 3rd in an X3. John Herr rounded out D, only .3 off the old man’s time in the X3. Jeff Lutsch won E class, beating Norbert Sobolko and Jeff’s co-driver, Faisal Vuillomenet. There were just 2 runners in F, with James Graff beating Nick Trnka. Tim Head was all alone in R, but I’m sure he had fun just the same. Last, but not least, Ladies class had 10 participants. Jackie Blair took 1st, besting Kelsey Watts, and Renee Kobayashi. It was, once again, a terrific event. I want to thank the rest of the chair people; my wife Pam Imholz, Jens & Debbi Abildgaard, and Graig Neville. Another shout out to Pete and Sandy for chasing down parts, Matt and Sue and the rest of the gang at Tire Rack for being such wonderful hosts, Heather Adelman, Erin Sanford and Larry Kull from Yokohama, Greg Bernheisel from Considine Sales and the ever-present Barbara Adams and Larry Schettel. See you next year!
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