Monday, February 20, 2017

Brian Takes 5th: Out of 103 Drivers!

Brian in Orange

On a beautiful weekend in the Palmetto state, Brian Nixon kicked off the NMS season with a big bang on Sunday, taking 5th place overall PAX out of 103 drivers! This was a great turn-out at Darlington for the South Carolina Region of the Sports Car Club of America, and they'll be competing once a month for most of the rest of 2017.  NMS co-driver last year Jason Rucker also landed in the top 10, with 10th place on the day in a different car.

Brian and the NMS Miata competed in the Pro class, which features cars from all classes, and attracts the fastest drivers in the region. He placed a solid 4th place in Pro, and is off to a flying start in 2017.
Overall, the Miata gang took 5 of the top 10 places, with our friends Kyle Ray-Smith, Luke O'Hara, and Marty Bull all up there fighting for the win. The autocross crowd is a great group of drivers and friends, and it's great to be competing again, win lose or draw. (although winning is more fun!)

Listed below are the top 10 overall PAX drivers out of 103 competitors. For all the results you can find them on the SCR results page at: FEB RESULTS

Place Driver Car Model Pax Time Diff. From 1st
1 Jason Fetchko 2003 Toyota MR2  25.531 0 0
2 Kyle Ray-Smith 2001 Mazda Miata 25.557 0.026 0.026
3 Luke O’Hara 2001 Mazda Miata 25.719 0.162 0.188
4 Chad Parker 2016 Scion FR-S 25.986 0.267 0.455
5 Brian Nixon 1999 Mazda Miata 26.014 0.028 0.483
6 Don Bruner Biesse 26.017 0.003 0.486
7 Jaybird 1999 Mazda Miata 26.024 0.007 0.493
8 Dave Jenkins 2010 Subaru STI 26.029 0.005 0.498
9 Marty Bull 2005 Mazdaspeed MX5 26.048 0.019 0.517
10 Jason Rucker 2016 Scion FR-S 26.175 0.127 0.644

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Here Comes the Autocross/NASCAR/Formula 1 Season!

We hope you had a great weekend! In the NMS-South area, Brian was busy this weekend with the first weekend of autocross with the South Carolina Region of the Sports Car Club of America. They held an SCCA Finish Line school on Saturday, and then their first autocross of the year at Darlington on Sunday. 

Brian Nixon in the passenger seat

You also just might have noticed that the NASCAR folks are up and running again, with the pre-season kick-off down in Daytona this weekend too. In an effort to make the racing more fun, more attractive, and keep the fans interested all season long, NASCAR has tweaked the race format this year. So, in addition to having a new series sponsor (out with Verizon, in with Monster energy drinks), each race will now have three parts, and each part will award points. After that, it starts getting complicated, so you might have to consult with an attorney to really understand how this thing works. If nothing else, we believe that the idea is still to drive faster than the other drivers, and hopefully the first car across the finish line wins the race. More to follow on this, maybe that's how it works, maybe not!

Formula 1 wise, things start getting interesting tomorrow, when the first new 2017 car unveiling takes place. Since we've gone without any racing since late in November, even the appearance of a new car is news worthy! The first race won't happen until late March in Australia, so at least this week we get new cars revealed all week. After that, there are two different four day test sessions, so we'll finally get to see some cars on track, and check out the new look to the lower, wider, and bigger tire cars this year. Predictions are that the cars will be getting around the average track about five seconds a lap faster, so that sounds like some fun right there!

Day               Team        
Monday         Sauber
Tuesday        Renault
Wednesday   Force India
Thursday       Mercedes
Friday            Ferrari and McLaren
Saturday        Williams
Sunday          Haas and Red Bull and Toro Rosso

Test 1             February 27-March 2
Test 2             March 7-10

Friday, February 17, 2017

Motor Trend Richmond Virginia Auto Show

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid

Today I attended this annual auto show, and let me just say this: You get a free year's subscription to Motor Trend magazine with every paid admission! Hey, it pays for itself! I've attended this a few years in a row now, and a few years before that in Greenville SC, so look for a Motor Trend auto show near you!

The show in Richmond continues thru Sunday this weekend. Opens at 10am every day.

Here are some highlights!


Corvette Grand Sport, starts at only $67,000!

Corvette = 'MERICA!

Chevy Bolt = All Electric!

Chevy Suburban = When you need a BIG ONE!


My lovely assistant checks the Buick

Buick mesh in the sun roof

FIAT 124 Spider Abarth

FIAT 500
Honda Civic = Built in England, I did not know that. Some are also built in Canada

Mustang 5.0 GT


Mustang = 'MERICA!

Mustang California Special badge
Subaru BRZ


Mazda Miata

292 horsepower in a VW Golf for only $40,000


VW Wolfsburg badge on an SUV
Aston Martin = Good enough for James Bond!

Alfa Romeo 4C = Carbon Fiber body

Mercedes AMG GT

Lexus = My least favorite grill in the world

Mustang Shelby display

Classic Mustang G.T. 350