Hallett Motor Racing Circuit May 31, 1998
Written by Monty Bates
Hallett Motor Racing Circuit is a 1.8 mile road racing course. It is located 35 miles west of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
On May 31, 1998, more than a dozen members from the Ferrari Mailing List met at Tulsa, Oklahoma to take the opportunity to share the Hallett race track with the Alfa Romeo Owners Club of Oklahoma. Many of the Ferrari List members drove between 500 and 1,500 miles each way to attend.
The only known casualties from the weekend (from the Ferrari List members) were one A/C compressor (Matt Boyd) and one alternator (Ric Rainbolt) All of the Ferrari Mailing List attendees and automobiles made it home safely with big smiles on our faces.
Rick Rainbolt's 308 behind Jon Ward's 348ts. In the back is Rick Lindsay's Mondial.
Shannon driving Charles Perry's Testarossa.
Shannon is in the "False Grid" ready for the starting line. Shannon did an excellent job driving the TR. She said she just left it in second gear and drove. She had no problem keeping up with me in my 308, and I was using all of the gears!
Charles Perry and Shannon. Two of the nicest people you will ever meet.
Wendy Rainbolt in her 308. She was FAST!!! Husband Ric claims she wore out the tires.
Ric Rainbolt preparing his 308. If anybody has a Ferrari technical question, Ric is the person to ask.
Matt, Shannon, Robert, Wendy, and me, Monty.
Jon Ward preparing his 348.
Matt Boyd in his beautiful 308 GTS qv.
Charles Perry's Testarossa. Above his car is (from left to right)
Someone driving Robert Rehkopf's mint condition 328. Robert was nice enough to let people take the 328 on the track.
Robert is in the yellow shirt drinking something from a green bottle. Great guy. In about two minutes he can make you feel like you have been best friends for life.
Joe Martz in his Lamborghini Countach at the starting line. Joe is a great guy. He was giving rides in the Countach and even letting people drive it. Joe said, "You just have to ask."
Joe pointed out that the Ferrari list members were lousy at staying in a convoy from the hotel to the race track. I am not sure why we were having a problem. When Joe was leading the pack at 110 mph and screamed by a highway patrolman, the highway patrolman didn't even attempt to go after the pack. I was about five miles back poking along at 55 mph.
The Countach Engine. Joe does all of the maintenance on all of his cars. He says synchronizing six carburetors is no problem. Well maybe no problem for him.
My wife Kimberly in the Countach. Yes, she loves the car. If I asked her the question, "which would you rather have, me or the Lamborghini?", I think I know what she would say.
Oh, My. Here I am in the Countach.
Ferrari Technician Robert Rehkopf getting ready to torque the wheels on his 328. I believe that is his son Robert Junior driving.
I believe that is Robert Rehkopf Junior driving his father's car.
I am in the "false grid" getting ready for the starting line.
Me again. Notice Matt Boyd coming up from behind? I think he passed me three times in five laps. His car is Euro. Mine has the USA emission equipment.
Matt and I raced to the shade. Matt has the Euro spoiler on front. He got the shade.
Matt in discussion with his instructor.
A red Porsche (not from our Ferrari Mailing List) had a small incident.
This was very sobering for all of us. We all heard the screeching and saw the car flying in the air upside down. The driver was able to get out of the car immediately, but it took the paramedics about fifteen minutes to get the passenger out. That fifteen minutes seemed like forever. We weren't sure of the condition of the passenger. Fortunately, both are fine as you can see below.
Really Ouch. Notice that in the crash they ripped a wheel off the car but the driver and passenger walked away without injury. These guys should buy a lottery ticket.
The driver is on the right, and the passenger is on the left. This picture was taken about five hours after the crash. Obviously both are doing fine. The passenger had quite a few x-rays at the hospital. Nothing broken, just bruises. They told him to do a lot of walking. I think he was shaken up a little.
The driver was trying to figure out what to tell his insurance his company. How's this: "I dunno. I was just driving along outside of Tulsa and kinda went off the road. All I know is we flipped over. Good thing we had our seat belts on."
On, December 9, 1998, I recieved this mail message:
I'm the driver of the red Porsche Carrera 4 (from that dreaded day at Hallett). Yes, it was quite a ride! Actually if you care to set the record straight with your text, the wheel coming off started the whole problem. Either a lug nut stripped or wheel stud broke. I'm still not sure which happened first. Anyway all was fine at the entry to turn 7. Then half way up the hill a loud pop in the right rear! I remember looking over at my co-pilot as we started to spin. At first I treated it like any spin-out and tried to drive in the direction that I wanted to go. It's amayzing how much time it seems like when it's really less than 30 seconds. So as we left the track (slightly backwards) I realized there was no saving it. At that point I just held on and waited. The side with both tires actually caught a rut in the grass and induced the roll. When the dust settled I was fine and ready to exit the vehicle. The EMSA girl was right there as soon as we stopped thank goodness. At first she instructed me to stay in the car while the other cars exited the track. I looked to my right and the door was open and my passenger was acting kind of shocky. So of course a million things cross my mind. As you know he was fine. It's a credit to the design of the Porsche.
I'm sorry to have caused such a problem for a good day. It is a wake up call that it can happen in a second to any of us. I have to say I'd rather have it happen on a track.
My insurance was slow to pay-off (3 months). Not because of the situation but because of the value of the car. Due to the fact it was a Drivers Education event there were no problems (of course my rates may go way up soon). It was quite a unique car in that it's supercharged. Overall very safe and drivable but with 450 hp it's as quick as a great sport bike.
I work as a Driving Insrtuctor for the Porsche Club at several race tracks each year. So it was nice to go to one a few months later and get the chance to drive again. Kind of "back on the horse that threw ya" type deal.
Hopefully next year I can redeem myself with the Alfa club and help out as an instructor (not driver).
Also I've attached a pic of my C4 before.
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