Hello St Lac Members, I hope you are doing well as it’s been a while since reaching out to you all. Just a warning if you are reading this on your phone I apologize in advance for the length of the email to come as I find at work these days if I write anything longer than a paragraph colleagues don’t realize there is more content to come when reading on a tiny screen. So you might want to check back from a laptop or tablet as the club needs your advice and opinions on where to focus our efforts next year. You’ll find at the end of this email a link to an online survey and we are counting on your help to fill it in to provide us with important feedback for the 2022 calendar and proposed events. So unlike your internet provider, utility, or workplace we actually give a $hit what you think about the Clubs’ activities so please take a couple of minutes to fill it in. Roger who graciously accepted the challenge of finding a free survey tool ( as survey monkey now charges a steep annual fee) says that if we receive 10% feedback we are doing well with an above average response- I for one hope we can do much better and i will be disappointed if we don’t hear back from you. The survey tool is active for one week so please make an effort because there are some great things brewing for next year and we need a collective point of view to move forward with our planning.
2021 was a very busy year for the Club despite Covid and the roadblocks it created and as it turned out getting together at the race track (SMP) or at Picton for our annual Regional Slalom were almost normal with the exception of social distancing. For me it was a great privilege in fact and an opportunity to meet many new members and extend the tradition that St Lac has provided since 1953 — bringing like minded car enthusiasts together to have fun and improve their driving skills. As previously mentioned the membership grew to 112 members this year. So well done everyone for sharing your enthusiasm among friends as we are a grassroots organization so keep recruiting like minded gear heads as its a collective effort and the results showed this year. Again it was gratifying to see teenage drivers among our ranks this year and their friends showing up to see what all the old farts were doing. It put a smile on my face.
So let’s get down to the plans for 2022 (the year of the Tiger). Firstly, St Lap III is already in the planning stages and our goal is to expand the experience. In case you missed it, St Lap is our monthly evening lapping session at Shannonville which takes place traditionally on the third Thursday of the month for the ridiculously low fee of $265.00 for the 5 evening lapping pass. One of the complaints this year was the discrepancy of watching two open wheel cars tootle around for 15 minutes while 20 street car drivers awaited their turn to queue up for a more crowded next session. With this in mind we are now looking at a dual pass system – a racing pass and a street car one. To make this work the Club is looking at renting SMP at noon on our lapping dates. The afternoon sessions would be dedicated to open and closed wheel race cars and would run until 5:00 at which point we’d switch to the street cars that currently populate the majority of St Lap pass holders. This plan is in the working stages and is not a done deal by any means. The goal is to draw racers from other CASC affiliated clubs and we now have the support of the CASC race director, Ray Arlakas, to reach out to them on St Lac’s behalf. In addition the steering committee member Brian Graham, for the Toyo F1600 Series, is supportive of this scheme. Ed Luce, who many of you will know as a long term St Lac member also sits on the Varac board of directors and will be speaking to the other decision makers within Varac to garnish their support. Varac has the largest group of racers so hopefully this will be a win win for all the local clubs with race car owners. We are also awaiting some details from SMP before we can plan a calendar as it might be necessary to mix up the dates somewhat to accommodate all the regional race series dates- what’s clear though is there is a definite interest to provide a value packed race car pass.
The second interesting development this fall is that the Race Director for BEMC (Canada’s oldest organized car club) has asked St Lac to poll its membership to see if there are any individuals among us that would be willing to volunteer for BEMC’s Casc sanctioned race weekend at Shannonville next June 4-5th. So if you have ever dreamed of marshalling at the F1 race in Montreal here is your first step. There are a wide range of voluntary positions that are open to mentorship and training over the weekend with the goal of having you continue to volunteer at other regional events – for example there are grid marshals, mock grid marshals, paddock marshals, pit lane positions, registration roles as well as coveted ones like driving the pace car or being the starter. From my own racing experiences the volunteers are a wonderful crew and are welcoming to newcomers like myself so I hope we can stir up some interest among you all. In a similar vein we have been asked by the organizers of the 2022 Kingston Corvette Invasion to ask our membership for voluntary help over their weekend event in June but those details will be released in the New Year; but my understanding is that this event rivals the Poker run for the revenue it creates for the local area. I am looking forward to this weekend and hoping the Kingston police might sanction driving the C4 on a street cruise- that would be fun…
Please note I will be updating the membership once we tally the poll results and move forward with the dates and details for 2022- sadly it look like the Picton event may be in jeopardy but i am not writing that venue off yet. All the best everyone and stay safe.