SVRA Fan Mail

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Thanks again to all our competitors, crew members, spectators, and sponsors for making SVRA what it is today. Below are some of the messages we have received over the last few weeks about our recent events. If you would like to share your experience, please do not hesitate to contact us today.

Had a great time Tony. Thanks to all involved. -John Coyle


Very enjoyable weekend event. Thank you guys. -Chad J


From one Piasanno to another you do a great job! Looking forward to June at INDY!
-Ralph


This was our first SVRA event and you guys put on a great event. We ran our 1990 1.6L Miata taking 2nd by just a few feet VS one of Advanced Autosports top drivers. We have now decided to do your Mid-Ohio event and VIR and just maybe, Portland. We were running the SCCA majors series but will back out of that, too much body contact and too little SCCA action on the 1.6L cars is our opinion. Look forward to more participation in your excellent program!!!
Mike Fornetti Crew


First-time trip to Road America. My husband Brad, my son Chandler, and I have thoroughly enjoyed every experience that we have had here. Yes, that includes the wind, rain, the sun and also the 360 I got to experience out of turn 1. Wouldn’t trade anything for the memories of this weekend! Thanks for all that you do Tony.

Debbie Briscoe


Hi Tony,
I just wanted to let you know I think what your doing with Vintage racing is good. It took me a little while to figure out it ain’t easy! Hope to see you at Mid Ohio next year as this year started out with a not so good Bang! Have a great season!
Mike Levine


Thanks Ed for running a safe, fun and on-time event last weekend. I know you have lots of pictures and would like to share one candid shot from the podium in Group 2.

This handshake on the podium characterizes what I love about racing with SVRA, there is no doubt we respect each others abilities and are having a great time. Further we did not meet each other until this event.

I would also say that while this shot was taken on the podium I have had similar handshakes with other racers while racing in the middle of the pack.

Great people and great cars, looking forward to Sonoma.

Mark Pladson


Hey there Tony!
I just wanted to share my appreciation for what you are doing for our sport. It’s a relief to finally see somebody in charge that gets it! I realize it’s mostly an uphill battle for you have been fighting, but you are shining a light of hope that vintage racing may one day actually flourish as a sport. Sadly, the people in charge of the vintage sanctioning bodies are out of date with what makes sense to us as racers, and tend to put so much effort into resisting change, that they are slowly strangling the sport to death… Keep up the great work and thanks for again for coming up to seattle to speak today!

I’ll see you in Portland – John Levitt


Thank you for including the Pre-War guys. We appreciate it! I’ve signed up for the Hill Climb and I’m looking forward to it. Bill Stelcher


Tony,

I would like to thank you and your entire team. Everyone could not have been nicer or more efficient. I’m sure little things happened, as they always will, but let me assure you that your team handled everything with professionalism and minimized any effect the issue may have created.

Our group a great time and we are looking forward to the next SVRA event.

Once again thanks,
Bob Piccione


Thank you for including the Pre-War guys. We appreciate it! I’ve signed up for the Hill Climb and I’m looking forward to it. Bill Stelcher


Kathy,

I just wanted to give compliments to you and the entire team that conducted the Amelia Island Vintage Gran Prix. My family and I had a great time and we are already looking forward to next year’s events.

Best Regards,
Paul Dillard


We had a wonderful time at Sebring. Each year we go it gets better. Your staff did a good job of coordinating the event. Hope to go again next year and maybe take the drive to VIR.

Thank you.

George and Diana Rizzo


It was a great weekend, lots of track time and very well organized. I was driving a new car not up to full speed yet but I love Sebring.

Your staff is fantastic, a very dedicated group of very nice people.

All the best
Horace Ott. (Chip)


Peter,

The driver’s school at Roebling was fantastic. Even though I had driven competitively, over 40 years ago, your instruction and the assistants, with all of their experience and knowledge was outstanding. I thoroughly enjoyed the entire weekend and look forward to racing with SVRA. If the track weren’t so far away, I would try to go there for more events, very nice facility with some shade and lots of runoff areas. Thank you and the SVRA staff for all of their assistance.

Rick Ortman


Dear Peter,

Thank you for all that you did to make the school a great success. Best school ever. I deeply appreciate your skills as a teacher, motivator, mentor, cheerleader, and chief hand holder but most of all inspiring us to come up with more every session. You were kind and courteous and clear in your expectations.

I also am grateful for Scott and the rest of the instructors. Getting the certificate of completion was icing on the cake. But the cake, the total experience, was priceless. Thank you so much for being who you are.

Isaac


Dear Tony and the SVRA Team,

Congratulations on the completion of the exciting 2016 SVRA season. What a great season with 16 events in 11 states, 7 events within a week of another, and two events on the same weekend. Returning to Amelia Island and running the airport race after 48 years was extra special. “High fives” to every one!

You and your organization are due a huge applause for your great hospitality, organizational skills, and a staff with smiling faces and a willingness to help answer any question or request. This coupled with great races at great venues, great Saturday night food and fun, and exceptional concerts made for an impressive completion.

The outstanding SVRA sponsors are a credit to the growing vintage racing sport. SVRA is on the racing map, and I am sure will continue with positive growth in 2017 and beyond.

We thank you, and as we say in Texas, “our hats are off to y’all.”

We look forward to the 2017 season.

Cheers,

Fay and Duke Waldrop


Tony,
COTA, was my first time to participate in an SVRA event. It was a fantastic experience! Your group deserves a big thank you, for making this happen. Also, from my view, it was planned and executed with precision. I am already thinking about Indy!
John Kish


Thanks Tony for everything!
It was a great weekend. See you the next one.

zcar

You went to my car before my qualification to tell me hi and thanks!
Hector


Dear Tony and Kathy-
The kindness and grace that the SVRA gave our YMCA guests at COTA was above and beyond expectations. Thank you, and especially Kim, for putting huge smiles on the faces of the children when they were given Gold Medallions. You made a big impact in their day!
Look forward to see you all again soon.
God Speed-
George


Tony,
It was my first visit and I thank you and the whole SVRA staff and volunteers. Great experience- I will shoot for next year.
Warmest Regards To All,
Bob Wagner


Again thank you for a fantastic weekend. It was SOOOOO much fun and Peter was the BEST instructor!!!
Lisa


Thanks for the help on learning the COTA track. Your info is priceless in getting up to speed at a new to me track. Thanks for the coaching! With your help, I scored a second and a third place at Indy and got from 22nd in qualifying to 6th in my class!

Keep up the good work!

Thanks again,
Richard Wall


From all of us at Barron Racing we want to thank you and all of your fabulous crew for all that y’all do to make vintage racing what is today. It’s always such a pleasure racing with SVRA. I personally want to thank you for everything you’ve done to welcome the FV bunch to SVRA, I hope to help promote more races and really think we will have 40+ FVs at COTA next year.

THANK YOU SO MUCH, Elliott Barron/Barron Racing


Hi Tony, thank you for putting on a great event. I am running Trans AM2 with my buddy in a 69 Vintage Corvette. The combined race events are great and give both of us a chance to race with one tow.
My buddy was totally impressed when you walked up to him and thanked him while telling him you liked his Elkhart Green corvette! We are both looking forward to being at several events next year.
Thanks again and have a great winter.

Chris Pedersen


Tony,

Thanks for adding this to your schedule. You definitely are thinking out of the box with an all formula car event and new Miata group at select events… I’m 48 years old and SVRA always appealed to me, but now even more.

Mike Winebrenner


Good evening Tony,
I would like to thank you for a great race event at COTA! It was a privilege to race on this prestigious track again as well as a privilege to belong to SVRA.

Also, thank you for organizing Peter Krause to have his Drivers Orientation Program available to us drivers. Peter’s instruction was invaluable and his methods to get information through was outstanding.

Best Regards,
David Putz


Tony, didn’t know who to send this to so why not the the top. What a weekend my family and friends had. We are members of the British Motoring Club of New Orleans, and really went to the event to put our TR3 and TR6 in the Hagerty car show on Saturday. Before it was over we had all driven a Jaguar on an autocross course, a Land Rover over a obstacle course, hot lap in a F Type with a pro driver. 4 Laps on the track with the my sons Z4 and my TR6, I was the last one in line, Now my son is send me emails from grad school telling me he is looking into a racing license.

I must tell you that the staff, and members treated us as friends whether they were in a semi car carrier or a drag behind trailer. Special thanks to Toni who ran the car show, took great care of us, Shea my pro driver, Jaguar for being so generous with their equipment, staff and crew, and to you sir for running such a wonderful organization.

Jim, Donna, and Justin Clark


Hello Kathy,
It was a pleasure talking with you. You are the best at this with any organization I have raced with over the last 20+ years. You make everything easy.

Sincerely,
Dick


Dear Mr. Parella,

This past weekend my 9 year old son and I attended the Heacock Classic Gold Cup Event as spectators in Virginia. This was my son’s first time attending any auto event and it has been well over 20 years since I last attended a vintage auto race at Laguna Seca, California. I wanted to write and say thank you for a fantastic event and weekend! I’m sure my son would tell you this was one of the top 5 weekends, if not the best weekend of his life! He was thrilled by the access he was allowed to cars, drivers and crews who were universally excited to show and share their machines and knowledge with him. The uniqueness of each division and the diversity of cars kept him interested and excited, which is saying a lot for a 9 year old rambunctious child. We spent our time roaming the infield, watching the race from different vantage points, and observing the cars as they left the paddock and lined up in preparation of getting on the track. I don’t think he or I have the patience and attention span to sit in bleachers for hours at a NASCAR or similar oval track race, despite our shared love of cars and all things automotive.

We drove up Friday in our RV and reserved a premium camping site on the infield. Being able to stay on the grounds was a huge bonus as we were there at 8:00am as the cars roared to life and watched as the last car exited the track in the evening. We were spared the drudgery of sitting in traffic waiting to enter or exit crowded parking lots as is the case in so many sporting events.

Saturday night we grilled and then walked and talked to owners and mechanics. I enjoyed my conversations with crew members of the large, polished professional teams as much as my conversations with the retirees sleeping in their car trailers just out having a good time. Perhaps in my later years, once my kids are grown and the demands of work lessen, I’ll join their ranks.

These are great events and I can only hope you are successful in growing your organization. I cannot imagine a better way to enjoy that special father, son time than an event like this and hope to attend more in the future.

Thank you and good luck.

Rick Demolina


Tony,
Not much I can say at this point. It has been another wonderful SVRA racing season. I am still stunned with the Driver of the Year award and will be for some time. It has capped off my racing career.

The Zenith watch is spectacular as is the gorgeous oil painting of my car. It is sitting on the mantle as I type this. Thank you. My wife has already confiscated the watch!

As I so poorly tried to say at the awards dinner, I consider it a privilege and an honor to race with the members of SVRA.

Have a good winter and I’ll see you next season.

Regards,
Ken Mennella


Hi Tony,

I wanted to thank you for a wonderful event. My wife and I had the best time. We camped at the track Thursday through Sunday.

It started with my Karmann Ghia being the feature car in the program under Group 1. I was so surprised and excited. I actually had little kids ask for my autograph, too fun. I enjoyed running the service members around the track on Friday morning. The Lt Dan Band’s performance was so great, and I had two days of racing in my car, with lots of time chatting in the pits with friends, old and new. I can’t wait for next year.

Wishing you all the best,

Joe


Thanks for hosting a great event. The event improvements over last year were very noticeable and I look forward to joining you again next year. GC


Thanks Tony and the wonderful staff, Ed especially. He is such an understated hands-on guy that works his butt off! Always loved how he ran HSR West. This event was first class. See you next year!
Alan #544 Volvo


Tony,
Thanks for another great event! It doesn’t get better than this event for most of us West Coast racers. Perfect Weather, LT. Dan Band concert, tons of kids in the cars, grandstands with fans, military equipment to check out, the awesome dinner at the Admiral’s home on Friday, etc, etc.
Best regards,
Bret Gann


Tony – Super great job by your entire staff. Thank you for a great time. Jeanne


Thanks, Tony. Had a great time. You and your staff did an amazing job. I will be there next year!
Jim


Tony – everyone –

Thanks so much for the great weekend! We had a great time and I know the effort that goes into this one is “huge” / probably more than anyone expected. As former military I really appreciate it.

Robert / CairyAnn Merritt


Hi Tony,

I’d just like to say a thank you to you and your staff for a great experience at The Glen. So, “Thank You.”

For 2016, I managed to complete Road America, Lime Rock and The Glen. The thing that stands out from the typical events I do in Australia are;
– How welcoming and accommodating the event staff and officials are.
– How much harmony and comradery there is in the paddock
– How clean and damage free the driving is, although the abilities of the drivers is quite mixed.
– The quality and scale of the extra activity. Like the drive to Watkins Glen township was just great.

I look forward to joining more of your events for 2017 and 2018.

Kind Regards,

Chris Stillwell


Tony,
Another terrific job by the SVRA staff at The Glen. Great weekend.

Ken


Tony and Team SVRA,

Great weekend and thank you very much for all your dedication to a wonderful, eclectic and historic weekend.

Michael and the WGI Team


Tony,

My name is Gerry Felix and I live in Watkins Glen, NY. In June of this year I contacted Pam Shatraw about arranging a pace car ride for my friend Alan Thompson who was coming for a visit from Northern Ireland.

Alan is passionate about cars and scheduled his visit to coincide with Watkins Glen’s vintage car race of 2016. Although we never met face to face- Pam was wonderful in arranging for Alan’s pace car ride. In fact everyone of the SVRA family went out of their way to make it a memorable experience for Alan.

Thank you so much!!! Alan will return home as a very happy Irishman!!!

Gerry Felix


Tony, I really appreciate the TOP program. It makes all of us safer, better drivers when we experience “new” tracks. This track is incredible!
Cheers, Chip Fudge


Tony,

krause_turner_2016Kudos and thanks to you and the SVRA staff for four great days of fun and friendly competition at the Portland Vintage Racing Festival. Virtually everything went off without a hitch, despite the threatening clouds that spared us from all but a few light showers. It was our first visit to PIR and the layout proved to be both challenging and fun, and the track operations were superb. Receiving our Gold Medallion, taking hot laps in a new Jaguar, and meeting Al Unser and Al Unser, Jr. helped to make for a very memorable event. Simply put, we had a blast!

Karl and Renorise (Ren) Krause
#6, 1965 Turner MkIII Speciale


Mr. Parella,

I wanted to express how much I (and my family) enjoyed the event. We thought it was a spectacular event overall and Mid-Ohio is a great venue. Considering it was my 1st event driving a 1960 Porsche 356, I was not quite sure what to expect. In addition, I had about 10 family members attend from Michigan, Texas, Ohio and Tennessee – this was also their 1st time to such an event.

Everyone had a great time!

After competing and Mid-Ohio, I am hooked and think the world of SVRA and would like to participate for years to come. I would like to get others hooked as well (I can tell you that the 10 family members I brought to Mid-Ohio are now hooked as well from a spectator perspective – they are looking for other SVRA type of events in their areas).

Regards,

Marcus Pillion


Tony, just wanted to say what a great time we had at both Indy and Mid Ohio. Indy was the spectacle we have come to expect with the auction, concert, fireworks, Pro-am, etc. and the dinner was once again top notch this year. The racing in group 2 was great with many close battles.

For the first time (for me anyway) a group of us from CA stayed over for Mid Ohio. What a fantastic track and a whole different feel to the event. A little more low profile, similar to many of our west coast events but still a great experience. Really enjoyed trying to learn the track and the racing was very competitive. Have not experienced the dinner at the track, but KC steakhouse was very good and the opportunity to get inside out of the Sun was great. As you said the dry weather was more than we expected and ended up battling some heat, not the rain.

I continue to be impressed with your Eastern staff (and Western, but I am used to them). They are a little more formal than we are used to in CA, but I feel they truly want to make it a positive experience for us as drivers. From registration, to Tech, to Grid everyone seems to be enjoying themselves and doing everything in their power to keep us “whiney” drivers happy. I really appreciate that attitude as this is a hobby that we do for fun. If it is not fun, or too hard we won’t do it. Thanks again for building a great staff and providing wonderful events.
Todd Strong FF#16


Mr. Parella,

I just wanted to reach out and introduce myself. My name is Marcus Pillion and I participated in my 1st SVRA event at Mid-Ohio last month (1st of many I hope).

On TrackI wanted to express how much I (and my family) enjoyed the event. We thought it was a spectacular event overall and Mid-Ohio is a great venue. Considering it was my 1st event driving a 1960 Porsche 356, I was not quite sure what to expect. In addition, I had about 10 family members attend from Michigan, Texas, Ohio and Tennessee – this was also their 1st time to such an event.

Everyone had a great time!

After competing and Mid-Ohio, I am hooked and think the world of SVRA and would like to participate for years to come. I would like to get others hooked as well.

Regards,

Marcus Pillion


Tony,
Another great event!
Thanks to you and the entire SVRA crew for your efforts.
See you at Watkins Glen.

Regards,
Ken


Tony,
Just wanted to let you know that we had a great time at Indy with SVRA. Thank you for allowing us to come play with you. Everyone was so friendly and helpful, it really made for a wonderful experience. I will be looking forward to the next time that we can come race with you.
Dave Ruegsegger


Tony:

On behalf of Rowdie Racing, I would like to thank you, Kathy Swinford and Kim Hoxie for a well-organized event. In addition to my race crew, the staff quickly accommodated wife Chari and my Daughter Laura and husband for the Saturday Banquet.

The opportunity to race my 1962 MGA at the Brickyard was a great experience and we look forward to future SVRA races too.

David Smith
Rowdie Racing


zannerTony – just wanted to thank you for another great event at Mid-Ohio. The weather was perfect and you and your staff ran everything right on time. Unfortunately I don’t race with SVRA like I did back in the mid-90’s but hopefully that will change.
Thank you and I hope you had a safe tow home.
Erick Zanner


Tony,
Jacqulyn and I had a fabulous time in Indianapolis, the event was truly first cabin! Thanks a million to you and your staff for making
a dream a reality! We will back next year to keep living / re-living the dream!
See you in Portland!
Jeff and Jacqulyn Mincheff


Hey Tony,

Wanted to take a minute of your time to thank you for allowing me to run in the Indy Exhibition group with my F5000. It meant EVERYTHING to me, having been an Indy 500 guy my whole life. It has been my dream. The car was fast and smooth and no drama was created. I drove it pretty quick, waiting to see if that would be an issue, but it wasn’t… so good. Quite frankly the car felt glued to the track in the corners.

I also wanted to comment on how nice your staff was. Being a 40 year member in SCCA, I know controversy can sometimes occur with the sanctioning body. Your folks seemed to balance me having fun and safety very well. The dynamic inside the SCCA volunteer system is “complex” so it was nice to start anew with a fresh bunch. And of course the banquet, auction, and concert were amazing.

One positive result of the Indy weekend is I have a renewed interest in getting my Penske PC10 operational. Maybe I’ll be back at Indy in that one next year… a proper CHAMP CAR!

Thanks again, Ross


The SVRA family is alive and well. Our family extends to all involved in our sport from the corner workers, volunteers, car owners, drivers, crew and all others. The fantastic cars bring us together but the camaraderie and friendship keep us together. SVRA weekends are the family reunions you don’t want to miss!

Firemen Jim and Bob Caudle are two racers that embody the spirit of the SVRA. After the heavy wind and rain storm at Indy Wednesday evening our paddock looked rough. Our large canopy was on the roof of the trailer, the car cover gone and the car full of water. Before we could get back to the track to start clean up Jim and Bob climbed up on our trailer and removed the damaged canopy and disassembled it thus eliminating the hazard of it blowing around any further and creating more damage to us or our fellow paddock neighbors.

The cars bring us together but it is great people like Jim and Bob Caudle that keep us together as an SVRA family.

Thanks Guys, we are proud to know you.

Woody Smith and family


Tony,
My third SVRA Indy and the best. Your team does a great job and shares a great attitude. I was lucky enough to win my class in the enduro and drink the milk, incredible experience! As I stood up there I looked across the track at the seats my father and I sat in for the 1964 500. What a special Father’s Day.

Thanks to all at SVRA.
Chip Halverson


Cheers Tony another great Brickyard Event!! Thanks for all you and your staff do to get this organized so well.
Kent


ALOHA Tony,
My name is Nelson Lampert and I drove car #88 in group 9. I traveled to the event from Hawaii after applying for and receiving an invitation. I had to write to tell you that this was the greatest event I have been part of in my 40 years of racing. All the workers and volunteers were extremely friendly and helpful. Although I live far away, I plan on attending more of your events in the future.
Regards,
Nelson Lampert


Hello Tony,

I just want to say “Thank You” from the bottom of my heart. What a great weekend, you continue to improve the event, it was another great experience for the teams and drivers. I think IndyCar should hire you to be the race director! Great job in laying down the law and sticking to your guns, it was crystal clear of what was expected from the drivers and I think things went really well!

I especially appreciate you spending time with my daughter, she felt honored and welcomed by you to be there. It’s fun to watch a kid develop with hopes to expand her world through racing.

I sincerely appreciate what you have done and honored to be a small part of it.

Johnny Unser


Tony and Mark,

Had a great time in the event with you guys and would like to thank for the invitation! Congratulations for having so many great names together in this race.

Kind regards,
Bia Figueiredo


Tony,

I can’t thank you enough for such a wonderful and exciting weekend. It was my first time at the Brickyard. A truly amazing place. I hope next year is even better.

Thanks again,
John Ash


Thank you for an amazing experience this weekend at Indy. You and the entire SVRA team are incredible and put on a spectacular event. Thank you on behalf of all racers for all that you do.
Eric


Tony,

I am back at home at still have a smile on my face, thank you and your great organization for inviting me to such a special event! I cannot say enough or be grateful enough!

Bob Lima and his crew where top notch and very accommodating to the fans to make it a successful weekend for all involved.

I hope to be part of SVRA in the future and don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of any assistance.

Your friend,
Josele


Hi Kathy,

It was great to finally meet you in person at Indy. Thanks for all your help in guiding me along and being so patient.

I had an absolute blast at Indy! Dan was spot on with sound suggestions and warnings at the drivers meeting. Peter was critical in the Road course learning curve. Pam was and is a scream and was perfect in explaining the Oval rules although a couple folks didn’t listen. Her emphasis on passing rules and avoiding fast lane hogging were right on. Also, Billy helped me for Sunday’s race as, despite running second on Saturday, my engine quit via an electrical problem resulting in me being placed last on Sunday’s Starting Grid. Billy realized I’d be climbing all over the slower cars trying to get to the front and placed me in back of the fast cars.

In sum I appreciate all you, Tony, and the SVRA crew do to make all this fun possible!

Best regards,
Jim


Thank You for putting on another wonderful event at IMS. The cars were great to see, the drivers and owners were polite, weather was excellent, the tent camping was fun, the fireworks were awesome, food was good, and the concert was the best one yet.

Looking forward to attending again next year.

Thanks Again,
Kim Boyd and Family


Tony,
I would like to thank you, your staff, and Steve Earl for the group presentation and performance award it was a total surprise when I was asked if I was going to the awards ceremony I said that I always go to support my fellow racers, I thought you were going to honor all of the recipients of the Gold Medallion status that were approved at Sonoma. I am very happy to be a Gold Medallion member and extremely happy to have won the Sonoma Award.
Don