Jeff K models his raffle winnings — a Shinsen Version hat and emasculating Miata tie. He also picked up the Driver of the Year award in Solo.
The 2011 season awards banquet was held Dec. 3 at the Troy Elks Club (same as 2010). It’s located at 134 North Greenbush Road / Route 4 in Troy, just south of Hudson-Valley Community College. Following is the bulk of the awards and trophies as presented at the banquet.
by Regional Executive Russ Burckhard, excerpted from the January 2012 Knock Off
Street Survival Appreciation Award
This year in association with Patroon BMWCCA we held our first Tire Rack Street Survival Event. For those who do not know what that is, it is a program that is geared to helping young drivers the opportunity to learn how to drive their vehicle under some extreme conditions. The training includes driving and class time that takes over where driver’s education leaves off. It gives the students the opportunity to see what their vehicle will do when it is pushed to its limits in a controlled environment. These are situations that more than likely will arise at some point while driving down the road. These students now have a good idea what will happen and what to do when it does. We have already heard of a few students that have avoided accidents because of this training.
MoHud has wanted to put on a Street Survival event for a number of years. We were lacking a site that could handle it. Last year Fortitech allowed us to use their site. This year I asked them if we could gain an extra weekend so that we could put on a Street Survival event. They were excited at the opportunity and even helped to get us a tractor trailer from Auto Solutions for one of the exercises. With the approval from the Solo Advisory Committee, the event was scheduled to happen.
Bill Wade, the National Program Manager for Street Survival, had nothing but good to say about the event and the amount of volunteers and the enthusiasm that they had for the program. The parents and students also had nothing but praise for the program as well. All of this would not have been possible without the efforts from everyone that had helped with the event. Thanks to everyone that had helped with this event. While it took many to make the event happen, it was the efforts of one that we are recognizing tonight.
The wheels were set in motion and the planning for the event started. After a slow start, something wonderful happened. Will Schambach stepped up and asked if he could be the event chairman. I stepped aside and let him run with it. Will worked hard to get the right people in all of the right places and made sure that they had what they needed to get the job done. He made sure that all of the necessary materials were in place and that all of the details were taken care of. It is my pleasure to award Will Schambach with the Street Survival Appreciation Award.
PDX Appreciation Award
For the second year in a row MoHud has put on a Performance Driving eXperience. Last year was held at Monticello Motorsports Park. This year it was held at Lime Rock Park. In my opinion this event could not have been much better. The staff that was assembled was second to none. The participants had a full day’s mix of classroom training and driving time. The instructors were well-suited to handle the task of teaching a range of drivers from first-timers to experienced racers. The track workers and specialty chiefs all handled the event like they have been doing it for years. The truth is that many have been doing what they do for years. Patroon BMWCCA has been holding these types of events for years. MoHud is fortunate that many of Patroon’s members are also MoHud members. Without the help from Patroon’s members, our event would not be the success that it was. The person that put all of this together is DJ McArdle. It is due to his leadership that this year’s PDX was such a great event. It is my pleasure to award DJ McArdle with the PDX Appreciation Award.
Solo Trophy Winners
2011 was another good year, with seven points events, three test and tunes and a first Street Survival event. The point events averaged close to 50 participants at each event. This is up from last year, and we had better weather.
- Street Prepared
- Prepared Modified
- Street Tire
5th Place from CS Kevin Gebert
4th Place from FS John Danese
3rd Place from ES Tom Moeller
2nd Place from CS Greg Cuda
1st Place from GS Bill Bennett
4th Place from FSP Lyndon Peck
3rd Place from CSP Bert Huiest
2nd Place from DSP Bruce Kosakoski
1st Place from DSP Will Schambach
2nd Place from CP Arne Beebe
1st Place from CP Russ Burckhard
6th Place from ST Allan Varcoe
5th Place from SM Jeff Kanetzky
4th Place from ST Ian Wallace
3rd Place from ST Carmine Russo
2nd Place from SM Phil Shoemaker
1st Place from SM Eric Smith
3rd Place from ASP Steve Jones
2nd Place from HS Robert Harrington
1st Place from ESP Devin LeMoine
4th Place from BS Dean Baker
3rd Place from CS Scott Cherry
2nd Place from CSP Andrew Lauria
1st Place from SS Keith Lauria
Novice of the Year
The 2011 winner was the toughest pick again this year. We had several nominees that made impressive debuts. For the winner, while some of his finishes were not as good as the other nominees; they were respectable. He was open to criticism and accepted the suggestions from others and made steady progress throughout the year. Several voting members commented on how they were impressed with the results of the competitor given the preparation level of the competitor’s car. In a very tight battle of the brothers, the 2011 Novice Driver of the Year is Andrew Lauria.
Most Improved Driver
The nominee for this year’s Most Improved Driver had an outstanding year. He made huge improvements from last year. Last year his average finish in class was around 15th in Stock. This year his average finish was 4th but he finished 5th in the Stock group. The 2011 Most Improved Driver is Kevin Gebert.
Female Driver of the Year
This year we had 2 competitors eligible for the Female Driver of the Year; Gabby Varcoe and Tracey Burckhard. Anyone of them would be a good choice for this award, but we had to narrow it down to one. The winner started off strong with a third place finish at her first event of the year. She followed this up with 3 6th place finishes in a row despite being hampered by a growing belly. Her final event of the year she managed a 6th place finish in a car she wasn’t used to competing in, just 1 week after giving birth. The 2011 Female Driver of the year is Tracey Burckhard.
Driver of the Year
This year’s Driver of the Year had some impressive finishes. He had finished the top of his class twice and captured a fastest time of the day and a fastest Pax along the way. Even though he only made it to 5 events this year, he did all of this in a borrowed car that sometimes wasn’t arranged until the morning of the event, and was never in the same car twice. Each time he beat the car owner’s time. Would the owners of those cars that Jeff co-drove and beat like to stand up? The 2011 Driver of the Year is Jeff Kanetzky.
Worker of the Year
The Worker of the Year is another tough award to give out as there are many that do so much during the year. I would like to take a moment to thank everyone that has helped with the Solo program this year. This year’s winner was asked to step up and take over for a recently vacated position. He did this even when he had to entertain relatives from out of town and could not stay to compete. He came to the event, did his job, and then left to do what he needed to do. When he was able to stay, he helped out with timing usually as an announcer. For those that have heard him at the events, they can attest to the quality of his color commentary. For those that have not heard him, you are missing out. The 2011 winner of the Worker of the year is DJ McArdle.