Porsche Story

trg-04

This story is part two from James O.

My Porsche story, part two.

My father was in the army, and I grew up in Germany. Like many army brats I lost touch with most of my friends when I came home. One friend, Bill, and I both loved Porsches. He had a 924 that was the first Porsche I ever drove.

Years later after my father died I felt the need to try to reconnect with my old friends. I found an old post card Bill had sent and tracked him down.We both had turned our love of Porsches into a job. I restore old ones and Bill had become a racing mechanic.

Bill had worked his way up to being crew chief for one of the TRG cars. He called me one day and said that they could use an extra hand at Lime Rock if I was interested. I couldn’t wait.

It seemed like forever but finally I packed up, kissed my wife good bye and headed down. This was cool. I stopped and got my credentials and passes and went to find Bill.

That year TRG was racing in Grand Am, they had two 996 GT3 RSR’s. I was put on the 67 car, the junior crew. Since I had no experience with race cars they gave me the grunt work. One of my jobs was to clean the water out after a wet track session. It rained the whole weekend and those cars are tight.

Race day came and still it was raining, so much so the pace car crashed. I didn’t care. I hauled tires over the wall during pit stops and helped out any way I could. We didn’t win, not even close, but that day it didn’t matter. I was was in car guy heaven, cold, wet heaven.

Two more times Bill called and I went. The next time they let me over the wall, I was just the fire man but I was over. The last time I was the fuel man. I did two stops and we won the race.

My favorite part was talking to the fans. Taking their pictures next to the cars, showing them the cars up close and even letting the little kids sit in the car. Maybe someday a kid will buy a Porsche and look back and say that was the day I fell in love with a car.

Comments

  1. James O….Thanks for sharing! That rocks!

  2. what years was that and who were the drivers? That’s my home track, wonder if I was there

  3. Kids love Porsches. I’m sure all will be a fan for life after being able to sit behind the wheel.

  4. That is such a cool story.. what an experience.

  5. I wish I had a story like that…
    or any story really.

  6. mitchell says:

    ruthless – you’re probably IN the pics ( a la george costanza @ kruger smoothing ,lol)

    thanks for the story, it was a good one (they’re all better than mine…)

  7. james o says:

    Hey Ruthless,
    the years were 01-04 and 06
    I can’t remember all the drivers but I know they included Kevin Buckler, Patrick Long and Andy Lally

  8. james o says:

    Ruthless,
    are those your shots of the cars in the esses on the photo page? nice shots.

  9. great story!sounds like fun.hope you have more.

  10. stay exclusive

  11. I really enjoy these insider views. I’d love to go
    racing. Wish I had the skills.

  12. R Hicks says:

    What a great story!

  13. James – the pics are mine from Koni Challenge earlier this year @ LRP, pics of the TRG Porsches are Andy Lally & Spencer Pumpelly.

    I’ll have to go thru my 2006 pics see what I can find for you.

    My Flying Lizard pics of #45 were from Sebring this year, driven by Joerg Bergmeister and Patrick Long.

    These are a few more that I took from Koni at LRP, my favorite being the Mazda coming over the crest of the hill on the back straight:

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2025598&id=1280182924&l=3517438f43

  14. Casey W says:

    that would have been an awesome experience. the only sort of crew work i’v gotten to do is dirt track racing. but i live in the mountains of SC so thats most of what there is here. and that would be really cool if you were the inspiring factor in the kid becoming a porsche fan. you would be one of many unnamed heros in that catagory

  15. Thanks James O – I’d been wanting to read about your work on racing crews since your last posting.

    @James O – why don’t the GT2’s qualify for the GT racing circuits? Do the cars have to be naturally aspirated? I know the GT3 is lighter, but the GT2 is so much more powerful. I suppose if you are going to be racing it’s probably easier to start with a lighter vehicle and build the engine up.

  16. sounds like a lot if fun.good way to spend some time.

  17. Hmmm…. Could’ve swore I posted a comment on this one yesterday. Maybe I closed my browser before I submitted it. I don’t remember exactly what it said, but I know I wanted to say thanks for posting the follow-up James O – I had been looking forward to hearing about your racing team experience since your last post and something to the effect of:

    Why do they use GT3’s instead of GT2’s? I read somewhere I think that GT2’s didn’t meet the requirements for GT racing. Do GT cars need to be naturally aspirated? The GT2 is more powerful and faster than the GT3 so it would seem to me to be the natural choice, but the GT3 is lighter weight so maybe it is an easier platform to start with and then milk some extra power out of the engine. Do you, James O or anyone, know why they don’t / can’t use GT2’s?

  18. Andrew,
    The diferent sancioning bodies determine what the they allow. The first year I went they were racing in Grand Am and at the time they had 5 classes racing at the same time. In that race there were Porsche GT1, GT2, and GT3’s all of diferent 911 generations. As the series change the rules, the classes change. Now in ALMS the GT3RSR’s actualy run in the GT2 class. I think the GT2 name for porsche for now is just a name, at least untill they change the rulls again.

  19. Andrew / James – it also has to do with balancing a series class over-all, so in ALMS for example, Ferrari, Porsche, Mustang and Corvette can all race competitively with each other. They allow a certain model, then they restrict horsepower and add or remove extra ballast for a particular model.

  20. james o says:

    Ruthless,
    I noticed that one of the sebring shots is from the pit wall. Are you a pro photgrapher or do you work with ALMS. Anyway your Sebring shots are really great.

  21. thanks James – I’m not a pro racing photog, but I have lots of friends who give me special access at tracks.

    There was a time when I wanted to be a professional Race Photographer

    This past year at the 12 Hours of Sebring I saw that over 300 press passes were handed out to photographers alone, I decided there was too many people competing for a small handful of clients, so I’m sticking to dog photography for a living, race photography as a hobby.

  22. Would love to take a drive

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