on the Ridge"
by Rayburn Freitas
I was very surprised and elated at the
turnout of lasts month's "Picnic on the Ridge"
outing of our Porsche Club. As the windward group gathered
at the Castle Hospital parking lot, I thought of the many
events that were attended by the same old group. It sure
was a pleasure having all of you at the picnic with your
All of the cars, as usual looked outstanding.
I felt very privileged to have led the group from the windward
side. When we were all gathered at the park side, I enjoyed
seeing club members admiring each other's cars and engaging
in "Porsche Talk". After all, there is always
something we can learn from each other--a new polish, wheel
cleaner or adjustments to make our "P" cars run
The officers and the people that set
this up would like to take this opportunity to thank all
of you. You all made it worth the effort and we will strive
to have more and better outings as the year progresses.
If any of you have any suggestions, we would like to hear
Mahalo to the wives, especially Joni,
for setting up an outstanding array of food. All of the
wives who helped should be proud of the end result. There
was something for everyone and I doubt if anyone left the
picnic hungry. (If it was left up to the men, we would have
to survive on hot dogs and chips.)
A big mahalo to everyone who helped to
clean up after we were done for the day. The clean up was
fast and efficient with Terry Felts handling the whip.
Again, Mahalo to everyone who organized
and participated in this event.
Caravan: John and Joni Arafiles--2000 Boxter S;
Richard Lau and Maude--'84 911 Carrera; Ed Yuen and Gwen--'78
911SC; Doug and Chey Delafontaine--'78 911SC; Terry Felts--'65
356 SC; Janet Felts--2000 Boxter S; Ambo & Elizabeth
Ilagan--'83 911SC; Sean Cripps--BMW 325; Jeff and Jin Yang;
Darryl and Marsha Lee--'98 C2S.
Caravan: Raybern and Patti Freitas--'88 Slant Nose
Turbo; Craig and Phyllis Wood--'81 911 Targa; Woody Hopler--'98
993 C4 cab; Kevin Ham--'73 Blue Carrera; Doug and Hollis
Wadsworth--'78 911SC; James Tynecki--'98 993 C2S; Larry
and Antoinette--'97 black Boxter; Jason and Maria Czech--'80
911SC; Pierre Bonnet and Chris--'97 Boxter; Chip Hughes--'99
See the digital photos
by Doug Wadsworth. > Go
License to Thrill
by Sean Cripps
Last month the Porsche club joined its
rival, er . . . ah . . . neighbor, the BMW club, for a weekend
of fun and education at Hawaii Raceway Park. What could
have been so alluring to draw both Beemerphiles and Porsche
freaks to spend a weekend together? The Aloha 500
did it! This year marks the second successful drivers education
course the BMW club has organized and it was awesome.
The two-day course held on March 3rd
and 4th was a professionally executed school utilizing both
local and mainland instructors to teach the basics of car
dynamics and how to safely enjoy our machine's driving potential.
In all there were around 65 BMWs and 9 Porsches. PCA-Hawaii
club members and other Porsche owners who joined us at the
event included James and Joey Tynecki in their white 993
C2S, Alan flame-boy Robinson in his restored
78 911 SC Targa, Jason Czech screaming around the
track in his root beer brown 911 SC, Pierre Bonnet piloting
his silver-bullet 97 Boxster, Chip "Mustang Man!
Hughes smoking up the skid pad in a pseudo 968, Carol Cripps
with her real 928 in gleaming guards red, Kelly
Cripps turning heads with his black 911 Carrera, Collyer
Young barreling top-down in his Carrera cab, John Armstrong
cutting up the course in his 95 993 coupe, and finally
Mike and Sean Cripps in their extremely "modified"
911 SC. Also from the Porsche club were Gerard Simoes, Scott
Schulte, and Lindsey Akamu who graciously gave their time
to work as local instructors and safety inspectors.
Learning began on Saturday with the three
basic car control clinics: skidpad, threshold braking, and
slalom. The reason for practicing these exercises is to
get the driver acquainted with his or her car's abilities
when pushed to its limits. At the skidpad four cones were
set in a pattern to make an ellipse. This pattern gives
a course layout that has two gentle arcs running parallel
and two sharper turns at either end. The purpose is to show
how a car can be steered with the throttle and also to teach
how to choose a turn-in point. Once the driver has practiced
a few laps around the skidpad and gets a handle on throttle
steering, it is on to the second exercise, the slalom course.
This clinic is designed to force the driver to weave through
a series of cones and necessitate the driver look ahead
and plan a reaction scheme. It is actually much like an
accident avoidance course where the driver needs to be able
to toss the car left or right to avoid debris in the road.
The third clinic performed on Saturday was the threshold
braking. This course is aimed at simulating a car or person
appearing before the driver and the driver needing to brake
to stop in front of the obstruction or swerving to avoid
it. The drivers were instructed to get up to speed and then
brake at a series of cones. Those with ABS had it easy,
as they merely pressed hard on the pedal and let the ABS
work its magic. Those of us with older cars needed to master
brake modulation, which is pressing the pedal rapidly to
prevent the wheel from locking. After the straightline braking
exercise, one brave instructor stood in the middle of the
road and waved each fast-approaching car left or right at
the last instant to simulate an obstacle. After swerving,
the driver needed to threshold brake to a stop. I guessed
that the stop is necessary so we could practice yelling
at the person who almost dented our car?
Saturday's objective was to increase
driver awareness of what his or her car can do and what
a driver can get away with. It was a very useful course
since all that was learned can be applied to everyday driving
and will help the driver avoid accidents. Having all this
under our helmets it was time to relax and prepare for Sunday
when all this would be applied at speed on the open track.
Sunday began with track safety and learning
the flags used by comer workers. This would prove useful
since some of our Porsche drivers like to go fast and have
a tendency to pass other cars on the straight. One driver
in particular also got a little tail happy. After this briefing
there was some classroom instruction to teach us the track
and how to navigate it safely. The rest of the day was in
the hotseat and learning as we go with personal instructors.
In order to orient us to the track, we
were first driven by an instructor. At this stage we were
shown the line and corner worker positions. After four laps,
it was our turn. Mind you, this is not a race, so there
was no need to speed; but who are we to deny the intrinsic
spirit of a Porsche. Once the line was found and braking
zones determined, the Porsches started to take off. Everywhere
around the track could be heard the whine or roar of a flat-six.
It was amazing to see these cars at speed. In the skidpad
staging area in the infield was a clear view of the back
straight leading into the chicane, off-camber and the sweeper.
Everyone was doing fantastic. Porsche after Porsche would
come screaming down the straight and then tap the brakes
and careen into the chicane. Then it was time to get hard
on the brakes and make a hard left into the off-camber and
then hard on the throttle to be slingshot into the sweep.
Here is where the throttle control from Saturday allowed
us to modulate the throttle to tighten our fine and exit
with tremendous speed onto the front straight only a foot
from the tire barrier.
From my point of view here is what happened:
At this point if there was a slower car in front my instructor
would tell me to get right in his tail and fill his mirror.
At the slower car's signal I could pass and hit the afterburners.
All the way down the straight it was full throttle, hit
six grand and shift. At the end of the straight the fast
cars were doing 110- 120 mph! Now turn 1, the hairpin, is
closing fast and it is time to see if one has learned threshold
braking. Hauling the car down from 110 and going from fourth
to second in 3 seconds, then looking ahead into the apex.
"Turn in sloooowly and hit the apex
. . . , now throttle out, my instructor would say
over the roar of the engine. Upshifting with the increasing
speed and now carrying fourth gear through the back straight
and back to the chicane. This is just one lap. The first
Now we get to learn for another 20 minutes
out here on the track. Each time making that turn in a little
more precise, gaining that little more exit speed and braking
later. Wow this is addictive! 20 minutes later it is time
to come in, just as well since it is exhausting driving
at speed. It is also time for lunch and swapping stories
about what we saw on the track.
Alan flame-boy Robinson and
his silver Targa were one of the hot debate stories that
day. Apparently on upshift his car had a tendency to throw
a two-foot flame out the tailpipe. Some of us thought this
was his defensive driving technique to keep the BMWs from
passing him; others thought he had mistakingly added beans
to his fuel instead of octane booster. Either way, it looked
just like Daytona and did keep some cars at bay. More amusement
came from my car, but more on that latter.
After lunch we continued with 25-minute
lap sessions, broken by intervals of talking with instructors
about our progress. The instructors were really insightful
on exactly how to solve problems. If there was a question
about the car understeering into turn one or how to hit
the apex on the off-camber or just checking on-hand position,
they were more than happy to listen and give advice. If
the problem could not be solved out of the car, they would
take the driver around the track or be a passenger. All
this and they basically were here as volunteer instructors.
As some of you know I only got my 911
together the day before the event. Due to the lateness of
completion there were still some bugs to be worked out and
just plain bad luck to be negotiated. On Saturday I found
I didnt have enough brakes and ended up disassembling
the master cylinder and booster assembly at the track under
the instruction of Lief, one of Gerard's fantastic mechanics.
We eventually bled the air trapped in the system out, but
now we lost half of the brake fluid. Thanks to my dad, though,
who made a trip to K-Mart for $1.99 brake fluid. With all
that done I could finish the slalom and go on the open track
On Sunday, as I explained, there is track
time interspersed with classroom sessions. During one of
these classroom sessions my father took his turn in MY 911
and more bad luck reared its head. As the story goes, he
let Scott Schulte drive the car to show him the line, but
I think Scott just wanted to see what my car could do, since
I heard Scott was going mighty fast in my car. Later when
they pulled into the pits, someone noticed that one of the
rear shocks had been dropped, i.e., the bolt had come out.
When I got back from class I was informed of this and we
looked high and low for it, but it was long gone. At this
point there were two choices: 1, I call it a day and just
watch everyone else have fun, or 2, "borrow" a
shock bolt from another car. Apparently Lindsey was the
only 911 there that wasnt running, so he was kind
enough to lend me a bolt. Now this is starting to resemble
In no time flat Lindsey brought his car
around and we had his rear end two feet in the air. By this
time a crowd had gathered and a guy was there filming it
too. It was almost like something on Speedvision. So Lindsey's
bolt came off, down his car went and up came mine. Gerard
was there on the jack to get the alignment just right and
my brother, Kelly, was running back and forth to the truck
getting me tools. In another minute we had the bolt in and
the car back on all fours. Wow, you don't get entertainment
like this just going to the movies on Sunday! This is what
really makes these events memorable and fun though, the
camaraderie and people coming together to help one another
just like a big happy club.
No matter what year, make or model you
drive, this is an event not to be missed. There is education,
camaraderie and, most importantly, a lot of fun. Even if
you dont want to go fast on Sunday, there is a lot
to see and do on Saturday , hint . . . hint . . . , spouses
and co-drivers. Thank you again BMW club for inviting us
and sharing your event so that we could all have fun together.
More importantly, thanks to the mainland and local instructors
who gave their own time to help put on a professional event.
I would also like to thank the SCCA and the various maintenance
shops that contributed to the safety of the event. I know
all of you who were there had a great time and those of
you who could not make it put aside some time next February
to join us, we guarantee you will leave with a smile. As
primers for the next track day the PCA is also working on
drivers ed. courses to ease into the event. Hope to see
you there! And yes I did return Lindsey's bolt.
April Food Bank
Caravan food items to Hawaii Food Bank
Assemble at end of Lagoon Drive, 9-10 a.m.
Saturday, April 14
Contact: Joni Arafiles 585-0578; firstname.lastname@example.org
May Spring Cruise
suggestions / volunteers welcome
Porsche Exhibit & Swap Meet at Kapiolani
Sunday, June 3
395-4446 or email@example.com
Open / Suggestions
Ihilani? / North Shore? / Mililani?
suggestions / volunteers welcome
/ Suggestions Welcome