As Collin mentioned below, the weather was anything but kind to the participants of the Buffalo Run this year. BUT, it was an awesome time nonetheless.
Festivities began Friday evening at the Kansas City Plaza’s popular VIP club, Blonde. Hot music played, participants and their guests visited with each other, drinks were poured and painted ladies (yes I said painted ladies) made the rounds as the German, Italian and US flags. Anthem Media’s own Brian Weaver gave a warm shout out to all of the sponsors including yours truly, ImagineAuto. The evening was not without its drama as shortly after the start of the party a young driver on the Plaza plowed into the back of a brand new – still dealer-tagged Porsche 911 that had been parked in front of the club. The car was thrown on the curb and landed at the base of a tree with the young girl’s car flipped upside down in the middle of the street. As far as we heard, no major injuries to the people, but the cars were a mangled mess. Click here to visit the Blonde KC website and view pictures of the evening inside the club. Choose Party Pics and then “KC Magazine’s Buffalo Run Party” link. Then click here, to visit Shot Bee where you can view pictures of all of the Buffalo Run events including the upside down car! Use the term “KC Rally” to view and/or purchase pictures.
Friday evening ended early as we were up at the crack of dawn for the Saturday concours. Five ImagineAuto cars and three House of Boost cars met at the shop at 7:00 a.m to caravan to the Plaza. The rain which had begun at about 2:00 a.m. was showering down very hard. Jeremy and Collin who were driving our 1987 911 Cab were dangerously close to calling it quits when the windows wouldn’t clear and the tires were having trouble sticking to the pavement. Thankfully they persevered and we made it across town to the concours.
At 11:15, 3 1/2 hours after we arrived on the Plaza and 8 inches of rain later, we were soaked, cold and chomping at the bit to get the cars out on the road and down to the Kansas Speedway for the first leg of the rally. Ironically, Stephen and I, Jeremy and Collin and Stephen and Donna all received the instructions for the Kansas side of the rally first. We were sent out in intervals and were therefore not next to each other as we left the Speedway. That was fine because Stephen and I are old pros when it comes to rallying. Working quite well together we were stoked to get on the route. Despite the rain we did very well. Just like the tales from last year, we were met with rally cars driving with us, against us, around us, etc. as each rally led drivers in different directions. We met up with Jeremy and Stephen’s cars right about the time Jeremy’s started to overheat. We lent a hand and determined he needed some oil which he proceeded to track down. During this adventure Jeremy was clocked by a rural police officer going 80 mph in a 55 zone. The officer let Jeremy off on a warning but with a promise to call all of his rally buddies and tell them to have fun but to slow down!
Due to the rain the first rally took 2 1/2 hours to complete. By the time we made it back to the Speedway for an awesome lunch it was time to head back out again in order to get back in time to not be disqualified. Having only 3 errors in the first leg of the race, the afternoon journey through Missouri was not quite as pretty. Stephen and I were totally confused off the bat but pressed on and made it back to the Speedway by the deadline and then off to the Kansas City Downtown Airport where the Saturday night festivies were being held.
Despite being exhausted and just barely dry after all of those hours, the party at the airport was awesome. Held at the Airport Museum inside an airplane hanger, the backdrop was a Howard Hughes TWA airplane at one end looking into the building. In front of the airplane was the stage where Soul Asylum played an awesome concert and we were once again treated to eats and drinks. About 4:00 in the afternoon the clouds parted and the sun came out. As the rally cars arrived at the Museum and were lined up again to ooooh and ahhhh about, the sun shined down upon them all with beautiful downtown Kansas City in the backround. It was an awesome site.
As for the awards, Stephen and I figured based on the points of the third place car, that were had to have been right around 4th or 5th. The third place car happened to be one of the ImagineAuto teams led by Neill Flood and Cindy Thomas. Neill drove his Porsche 930 and apparently Cindy did an outstanding job of navigating it. The first place winner was also an ImagineAuto car. Bob Wayman, an ImagineAuto friend and customer, who by the way won last year as well, drove his 1991 Porsche 965 to victory. Bob was just one point off of the rally course goal.
All in all it was a magnificently run event and one that we are marking on our calendar every year hereafter. We’ll just be keeping our fingers crossed for a dry event next year!