Thunderhill Park Raceway, January 16-17, 1999
By: Steve S.

The 2nd Annual Quattro Club USA Driving Safety Seminar was held in Northern California at the Thunderhill Park Raceway in Willows CA on January 16-17, 1999. Over two-thirds of the cars at the event were Audi A4s of varying years, a total of 31 cars in all. A4 owners from around the US made the trek to Thunderhill for this event. By far the "longest drive award" goes to Jim Bruce (Black 97 1.8TQM) for driving out from Minnesota for the event...Way to go Jim. Other A4 owners came in from Seattle WA, Los Angeles CA, and Reno NV.
The event was intended to provide the car owners the opportunity to experience their fine automobiles in conditions that they may not find in the daily driving. This event did not let down in that category. A4 owners with varying skill level came to experience what this quattro feature of their cars was all about. The weekend weather was varied, helping to provide real world experiences in driving at high speed in wet and slippery situations. Yes, a few A4 managed to let off the throttle at exactly the wrong time, take a line through the track that apexed too soon, or turn a bit too abruptly, but no one was hurt (including their cars) so that was good. The best part is that we all learned from their experiences.
The non-A4 owners got to see that the A4 usually does better in the turns than most of the older Audis, but may lack the power in the straights to seriously combat the significantly modified Audi 5000s and UrQuattros. It was definitely a learning experience for new and old Audi owners. Some A4 owners gained a new respect for some of the UrQuattros, S4s, and that 90CQ looking thing that was really a S2.
At the awards dinner on Saturday night, the A4 owners ended up with most of the raffle prizes...imagine that! Several substantial prizes were donated by H&R Springs, Dick's Audi Performance, Ronal Wheels USA, and 2Bennett Audimotive. Andrew Bennett of 2Bennett Audimotive in Davis CA, event coordinator, once again provided a great learning experience for all. During dinner all drivers and their families got together to discuss their on and off track experiences that day. Plans were made on how to tackle the track on the following day.

In the end we all left back to our families and friends a little wiser and a little smarter.

See you next year.



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