Blog Archives

Portrait of Scott-2

I saw Scott sitting on a tiny scooter and thought it was so funny to see that sight among so many wonderful race cars at Willow Springs International Raceway. He used the scooter to travel around the outskirts of the track to meet and greet friends, get the gossip and see what was going on.

Scott ran a yellow 944 Porsche with the Porsche Owners Club. He took care of the car himself saying that “racing is the hobby but mechanics comes along with the racing Hobby.”

Scott was from San Diego, California, USA where he owned his own company so he could afford his own race car. “I’ve always been into racing, since I was little a little kid, so, when I got to be able to afford it, I got a race car.”

Yellow 944 Porsche

Scott adjusting his helmet before his run

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Kat

When I met Kat, she was in the process of taking Minimoto lessons which she described as, “we were taking mini motorcycles that were about 50 cc caliber, generally kid’s bikes, to learn skills that we then can apply to our full size bikes.” She was doing low center of gravity moves and learning how to execute them safely.

Kat was riding Motocross for three years and, during this interview, she was taking a break from her second clinic at Willow Springs International Raceway.

Kat had her own Kawasaki_Z750 and a BMW F650GS .

You can learn more about Kat on her website Katz entertainment, but to sum things up, she was a full service performance-artist representative and a performer who also published blogs.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Brent

Brent was a Porsche Owners Club member and he had a great time whenever he came out to Willow Springs International Raceway for fun. Brett was a project manager for a large electric utility. Prior to that, he was a civil engineer where he mostly did jobs in the field of environmental cleanup. That included cleaning up contaminated soil and contaminate groundwater. Brent felt that all the projects he worked on where interesting, but when I asked him for examples, he didn’t give me any, instead, he said, “When you talk about cleaning up stuff, people don’t care. Out of sight, out of mind.”

Brent was originally from Illinois, completing his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois in Campaign, Illinois, USA. At the time of this interview, he lived in Los Angeles where he learned to love racing cars.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Brendan

Brendan came to Willow Springs International Raceway with the Porsche Owners Club to attend their annual pre-summer event. Brendan was a software salesman who started off in building construction and got into software sales accidentally. He was from San Diego, California, USA.

Brendan participated in car racing for over 20 years and owning his own Porsche was his lifetime dream. He could finally afford to buy the parts to build his own car by “scratching pennies.” He bought one part at a time quote “find a chassis, the motor, the this, the that…” Brendan’s car, below, was a Porsche 911 1970 RS.

Porsche 911

Side view (cool spoiler)

Fuel Cell

Extra tires

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Suzanne

Suzanne was a retired teacher who started off teaching in elementary school and high school and also taught English for non-English speakers. Toward the end of her career, she taught the General Equivalency Degree (G.E.D.) which certifies people who didn’t complete a high school diploma.

Suzanne started her college career at Marymount College in Palos Verdes, California, USA. But towards the end of her studies, she moved to the Loyola campus when Marymount joined with Loyola to become Loyola Marymount University. She majored in education and English and minored in French.

When Suzanne taught English, she preferred teaching literature. However, when she was teaching the GED, she had to teach a lot of writing. She found that it was difficult to teach people how to analyze all the aspects necessary to do a “five-part essay.” It was especially difficult to teach the non-English speakers to write essays.

At the time that we met, her daughter was also a teacher and Suzanne went to assist her daughter in her class two times a week. Suzanne noted that, “now they teach essay format at an earlier age.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Paul-1

Paul first came to Willow Springs International Raceway when he was fourteen and ever since then, it became something his dad and he frequented together. The car he drove “belonged to the two of them 50-50,” and they both ran it.

They ran an original Jack Roush NASCAR 1989 Race Car mostly at Willow Springs and at Sears Point Raceway, Sonoma, Northern California. Their car was the road course car for Scott Barton for 10 years; until he retired the car in 1999. The way it looks in the picture below was exactly the way it looked when it left Watkins Glen International track (in New York, USA) for the last time.

Jack Roush had many NASCAR teams and Paul’s car was a perfect Roush NASCAR vehicle. However, although he owned a NASCAR car, Paul was not a NASCAR racer. He only owned vintage cars and ran cars at race tracks “for fun.”

Paul suggested that anyone, “who wanted to come out to the track should come out because it’s one of the best things you could do and a lot of fun.”

Paul’s car on the track

what a cool car

Paul’s crew discussing events

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Joey

Joey had a 1966 Mustang which he acquired at 15 years old. Joey and his father restored the Mustang in their garage. His father had been into car racing his entire life and that’s how Joey grew up.

The Mustang was Joey’s first and only car and he drove it everywhere. Joey noted that he always had to be very cautious while driving.

Joey was from Santa Clarita, California, USA and completed Mission View Public Charter for high school. He was working in the structural steel industry. Joey mostly installed I- beams all over Los Angeles, and sometimes even worked on skyscrapers in downtown Los Angeles.

Joey said that anyone who’s never been to Willow Springs International Raceway, “should definitely come out and see what it was like.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Gegi

When I met Gegi, she was enjoying her first time ever at Willow Springs International Raceway. She accompanied her boyfriend to the Shelby Cobra Club event and was able to get a shotgun ride on the track in his race car. She considered it all very exciting and said she was “a little bit nervous, but it was a lot of fun.”

Gegi was originally from Costa Mesa, California, USA. She studied horticulture at Polytechnic State University–San Luis Obispo, then attended Santa Ana College Basic Fire Academy.

Gegi never ended up getting a firefighting job because, while waiting to be placed, she worked as a substitute teacher. Subsequently, her special education job at Edison High School in Huntington Beach, California, USA, “fell into place” after she earned her State credentials, so it must have been her destiny.

Some days, Gegi regretted not being a firefighter, but she really enjoyed what she was doing, so she was essentially a very happy person.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Bill-1

Bill had his 2000 Panoz for about a year when we met. He bought it specifically for an event such as the Shelby Cobra Club event at Willow Springs International Raceway. He was into running cars since 1952 when his father took him to sports car racing events.

Bill ran at Willow Springs and other Southern California tracks during the mid-seventies. He had another race car which was a Roadster, but considered the Panoz more comfortable.

Bill grew up in Burbank, California, USA. He moved there when he was about four and graduated from Burbank High School. He went to California Polytechnic State University College of Engineering – San Luis Obispo and majored in Aeronautical Engineering.

As an aeronautical engineer, Bill worked for Lockheed Martin but was laid off twice so he went into the oil industry instead. Bill was in offshore oil drilling and assigned to Brazil to be in a training program for management. He went through every phase of the job: roustabout, roughneck, deckhand, assistant driller, driller and a tool pusher.

Bill became a marine operations coordinator for Santa Fe drilling which joined with Global Marine and eventually was bought out by Transocean. He said it was very interesting working in the oil industry because it got him all around the world, “not just Brazil, but also to the North Sea and Indonesia.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Jay

Jay owned his own Body Shop store in San Fernando Valley, Ford Auto Body. He was about to retire when we met. He also enjoyed running cars as well as collecting them.

Jay came out to the the Shelby Cobra Club event at Willow Springs International Raceway every year. The year we met, he came with the “66” car you see below, which was a 1964 Daytona Coupe built for him in New Zealand by John Olson. John Olson was a friend of Jay’s but he’s also was the one who built the original Daytona Coupe, Serial Number 2287, for Carroll Shelby. That car was missing for 35 years. When it was eventually found, it was restored and then put in Auto Palace in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.

Jay owned an identical vehicle, his having serial number to 2603. Jay had just gotten his “66” (2603) back into shape and considered it a very fun car.

Jay excited to run his “very fun car”

Jay in the driver’s seat

special tags on “66”certified historical Shelby

in front of trailer

Jay running”66″ on the Willow Spring track

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.