Just a quick post for results. Recap will be up in future with pictures.
BIG thanks to Richard Mesick, Nancy Peck for great job in T & S, Don Drennon and ALL of our wonderful volunteer staff and stewards and officials ... and our hosts Graham County.
Special thanks to Tabitha at Graham County Travel and Tourism... her whole family did so much. We appreciate you GREATLY!
THANKS TO ALL DRIVERS for a wonderful weekend! You truly rocked the hill !
The Event Management and Board of Directors would like to recognize the following companies as sponsors of the 7th SCCA Chasing the Dragon Hillclimb!
Please like these folks on Facebook, check out their sites and let them know how much we appreciate their support.
They DESERVE our business for helping to make these events happen!
PRESENTED BY and CASH AWARDS PROVIDED BY
http://www.racetire.com/ Great source for race tires and trackside support!
http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/ Mag devoted to hardcore sports cars, driving skill improvement, technical advice and amateur motorsports!
https://www.facebook.com/THEHUBOFWNCLLC Our site for registration, Tech and GREAT FOOD!
http://headheldhighbrand.com/ A POSITIVE thinking creative apparel outlet!
https://www.facebook.com/hyperformancellc?rf=101278406731463 Fabrication & Paint Studio
http://www.killboy.com/ The ORIGINAL Tail of the Dragon at Deals Gap Photographer
http://www.grahamcountytravel.com/ Your WESTERN North Carolina Adventure begins HERE!
http://www.thesoutherndriver.com/wp/ Southeastern Motorsports News!
Many of our drivers and fans are going up early to explore the beauty of the Nantahala Forests and do some early recon. We are hearing from locals in Graham County and they are glad to have you! Please remember this is still a national forest and we are under US Forest Services jurisdiction. They do give speeding tickets and do patrol the road! It is easy to think if you drive to the top of the road and back down and see no cars, you have the road to yourself. That is not true. There are several trails that dump out at the top of the road at the Observation Deck and hikers walk down the road to the entrance to Joyce Kikmer. If you round the corner out of your lane, they might hear you and assume they are fine in other lane. Also, if you have a wreck or a break down... cell service can be spotty so you may be there a while! Be careful and take care of our site and our drivers. Be sure to let the locals know you are a hillclimber and how much we appreciate their hospitality. See you on the hill!
We do our best to bring you drivers from all over the world and unique cars at our hillclimbs! This year is no exception.
This September, we will have drivers originating from Finland, Sweden, India, Australia, England, Germany, Italy, Thailand, Poland and right here in the USA.
And the cars...
There are rumors there may be a Miata... or ten.
Grassroots Motorsports has been a sponsor of the Dragon Hillclimb since the very first one in 2011. Last year, they sent a reporter to do an article about our event and it will be in the next issue of Grassroots Motorsports! You'll see action pictures of Mike Breakey, Mike Tablas, Lars Lattstrom, Nate Wimbrow and Heikki Rinta-Koski, our current KING of the Hill! Also, interviews with Kat Karns, Dustin Webb, Marvin Fordham and others. This is a well written article and captures much of the fun of our sport.
On top of that, Grassroots Motorsports is offering of our hillclimbers this issue FREE of charge! You'll see information on our event and how to get started in the sport. For your free issue, click here and fill out the form and the will mail it to your address (inside continental US). FREE ISSUE OFFER
Thanks to Tim & Marjorie Suddard, Nancy Gomez, article by John Webber, pictures by Clark McInnes and Grassroots Motorsports staff for their continued support and kind offer!
Over the last 10 years, I have heard many people asking the question :
What creates the desire to take the risk of running a race car flat out up a wild mountain road? Why take a perfectly good street car and put in a 4 point cage and belts so you can roar through the woods and up those hills? Adrenalin junkies? Death defying daredevils? OR… are these hillclimbers just “a few fries short of a Happy Meal?” I know what drives my passion but what is it for others? I asked and here is what I found.“
“It’s not about just racing up the hill.” – It’s selecting a car that fits your style, speed and budget. For many, it begins with a daily driver street car. You begin visualizing how it will look and what it will take to convert it to a competitive car in the class you’d like to run. Ordering the parts and… while shuffling a job, school, family and other responsibilities… finding time to do the build. Finding the resources to do what you can’t and doing what you can the way YOU want it done. Enjoying the feel of a car seat, steering wheel, pedal layout… custom built to your body. Painting, striping, numbering and decaling to give the look YOU want. It’s building the very personal TOOL for the job of climbing that hill.
“It’s about the road.” – On a race track, we make endless cycles of the course… learning turn in points, braking zones, squeezing out that tenth here and there. We run the same track 3 to 8 times a year in many cases. For road racers, that perfect line for qualifying is seldom seen in a race due to traffic, passing and yellow flags. On a Hillclimb – you see the road once or twice a year. There are no other cars or obstructions and turns are mostly blind. You can’t see through the mountain. Changing surfaces, weather conditions, going from sunlight to tree covered shade patches, driving reactively to what you see in a 2 minute all-out burst… this is a challenge to get the max out of your car, tires and set up… finding the golden line for the fastest time you and the car can make that day.
“It’s about the other drivers.” - Hillclimb is more social than many other forms of racing. When you climb out of your car at the top, there are 20 other drivers all standing around talking that just experienced the same thing you did. They are friendly, open… willing to help with tools and advice . Many great friendships begin on a hill. On the occasion of a mechanical problem, drivers frequently offer their car to a competitor for some runs. Twice at the Dragon, that driver beat them in their own car. More and more women are competing and the “Danica Patrick” advantage (less weight / less testosterone) is showing in the results. Six of the Dragon Hillclimb class records were set by drivers over 65 years old and four records are held by drivers under 25.
“It’s about the crowd.” – Spectators come from all over to watch these cars go up the hill and talk to the drivers in the pits. To kids, these drivers are heroes and give them something to aspire to. For adults, they are a source of memories of motorsports events past, of cars they remember and would loved to have driven and a chance to enjoy motorsports competition. The kids seeking autographs and ringing the cowbells to encourage drivers to go faster… they don’t want to just watch cars go by at speed. They want to take part in the event, touch the cars, meet the drivers and enjoy the beautiful natural surrounding you find on a mountain. The view from the Observation Deck at the Top of the Dragon Hillclimb is incredible.
“It’s about the event staff” - So many people come together to make a Hillclimb happen. All volunteers who donate their time to come be a part of a unique motorsports spectacle. They receive training so they can be there in a time of need when a car goes off… but their joy comes from a ringside seat for a safe event. The Saturday night social/steak dinner is a great time for workers and drivers to talk and tell stories. Many of the greatest moments a driver will experience on a hillclimb are shared only by the driver and a few lucky course workers that were there watching over them.
“It’s about the feeling” - You don’t have to race a carbon fiber winged monster to enjoy driving a Hillclimb. You don’t have to win a trophy or set a record for your class. It’s about the feeling of being at the line belted in, feeling the vibration of your engine, looking up at that giant tire arch looming ahead. Watching the starter count down and checking your gauges for last seconds “all systems go.” Seeing the view from inside your helmet, inside your car with only the first 50 yards of the asphalt visible and after that…nothing. Remembering where it goes and trusting your memory, your car, your tires, the workers that the course is clean and safe so you can give it all you have and …GO! You don’t see signs, you don’t see workers, you don’t see trees… you see green blur on the sides and a ribbon of gray road as it is revealed to you. In 2 minutes time (that feels like 10), you see the finish line and your heartbeat and breathing begin to return to normal. It’s a rush… and you will do it 10 to 16 times over the course of the weekend. Each run, turns begin linking together in your memory and you carry more speed and brake later. If you do it right, the last run is the fastest as it all comes together. If you do it wrong, any run can be your last run of the weekend.
I guess the bottom line is HILLCLIMBERS ARE NOT DRIVERS. Hillclimbers are the drivers, the workers and the spectators who all come to take part in making the event special. They all come together to compete, fellowship and bond with their friends and their cars at the non-denominational church called NATURE.
Yes, some of us hillclimbers might be a few fries short of a Happy Meal…
but we are also some of the happiest people I know.
Article by Ted Theodore - The Southern Driver (7/14) . Thanks to Darryl Cannon for pictures and support from Day 1 to make the Dragon Hillclimb a reality! See more of his work at www.killboy.com
JUST A FEW REMINDERS :
- LODGING : We are already hearing of places filling up fast. There are still rooms at Appalachian Inn (www.appalachianinn.com) , Mountain Manor (www.mountainmanorhotel.com), Dragon's Rest (www.dragonsrestcabins.com), Simple Life Campgrounds (www.thesimplelifecampground.com) and several other places found under the LODGING tab above. These places are mentioned specifically because they are sponsoring our drivers and we DO appreciate them GREATLY! Let them know you are a hillclimber when you call. Some do give discounts for SCCA Hillclimbers! Also, be aware that many of the chalets divided by 2 couples are cheaper than hotels and very nice. Graham County appreciates us and is looking forward to our event!
- DRIVERS : Registration has been open 42 hours and we have 32 already entered. Please remember to sign in on www.myautoevents.com site, download the supps and entry forms found on the EVENT FLYER / ENTRY FORM tab. Fill them out along with your bio and mail in your entry with your check to reserve your spot.
-WORKER PRIZES : Any drivers wishing to donate prizes to our WORKER RAFFLE, please email Ted at firstname.lastname@example.org This is appreciated by staff who work hard to keep the mountain course safe and clear! Thanks! We have already had a working full size TRAFFIC LIGHT donated ... that will look great hanging in someone's garage ... (or living room if they are single.)
- HAT NIGHT CONTEST : Back by popular demand, it's Saturday Night HAT NIGHT! $25 prize for two best hats as selected by our wait staff!
- FRIDAY REGISTRATION : Greg and the nice staff at THE HUB have agreed to allow us to hold Registration and Tech at their place again this year. They enjoyed having us and look forward to welcoming our drivers and staff to Robbinsville! See you at THE HUB!
Registration is now OPEN for first 80 entrants. To insure your position, please mail in your check, bio and registration as detailed on the Registration Form.
Registration Link is located HERE
Downloadable version of supps can be found HERE
Todd Reid drove the yellow EVSR electric car along with Charlie Greenhaus at the last Dragon Hillclimb. Last week, Todd was involved in a bad racing accident at Summit Point in his Ford Probe. He has been released from the hospital and is back home recovering now. Many of our hillclimbers had been asking about him and wanting reports on his status. Todd sent the following message to our Dragon Hillclimbers :
"Hey - thanks all SO much for the kind messages and all the support !!!! I just arrived at home and am so glad to leave the hospital. Please relay to everyone that I'm home and starting the recovery process already. Thanks again!!!"
Many of you remember one of our Dragon Hillclimb drivers, Chris Porter in the white Porsche 944. He had a "close encounter" with a guard rail last year.
Chris and his team mate, Herman Porter, are competing in the One Lap of America this year with their Corvette LS3 powered Porsche 944... and rocking a Dragon decal to rep for us!
We wish them great success! Keep up with their progress at : http://slowmotionspeed.blogspot.com/