blipshift's LRP T-Shirt Contest: We have a winner

Blip winner limes

The Lime Rock Park “crowd-sourced” t-shirt design contest: We have a winner!

There were almost 90 entries, some amazing artwork – you guys made it really hard for the judges – and a lot of great ideas. We just think it’s so cool that a Lime Rock fan has designed a shirt that the whole world can buy.

First Place: "Since 1957," by Simon Paul (above)
Here’s Simon’s creative inspiration: “When you're here, you're trying to squeeze out every last drop of talent you've got. Like Paul Newman used to say, "When life gives you limes, make the apex." Or something like that. We may have misheard him. He was going pretty fast and we were sitting up on the hill...”

About the Artist, Simon Paul
Simon Paul is a user-interface designer and photography hobbyist. He has a background in industrial design and has had a passion for drawing since he was three years old. Simon is actively engaged in the design community and frequents local IDSA and IxDA events. He’s obsessed with always improving the user experience through research and user feedback. When he’s not designing websites, Simon is wrenching on cars or taking photos at local autocross events.

As the grand prize winner, he earned a Skip Barber One-Day Racing School. Congratulations, Simon.


The blipshift people originally intended to recognize two runners-up, each of whom would earn a $500 Gift Certificate to the Skip Barber Racing School. But Skip Barber and Sam Posey, the final judges, lobbied us hard to provide one more Racing School prize than was originally announced – hey, Skip’s the Boss and Sam’s the Legend – so we didn’t say “no.”

Here are all three runners-up...

Blip second StateSeal

Second Place: "State of Speed Seal," by Joe Clark
Replace the outline of Connecticut with the LRP track map, add the word “Fast” in front of “Transportation,” and you’ve got our second place finisher.


Blip third Treasure

Third Place: "National Treasure," by Benjamin Duell
We’re going to re-work the graphic a bit; the concept is great...


Blip fourth Monkees

Fourth Place: "Lime Rock Park as the Track," by Andrew Barca
Anybody remember the made-for-TV pop rock band The Monkees? Or the cover of the Beatles “Rubber Soul” album? That's what we were reminded of when this design hit the scene, man. It's groovy...

“Thanks!” to everyone who submitted designs to Blipshift’s Lime Rock tee shirt contest.

Hint: Keep an eye on Lime Rock’s online merchandise store. Just sayin'...


65. It's the new 35...


65. It’s the new 35

    When Paul Newman was 65, he was scoring top-10 results in Trans-Am. At 70, he was third in GT in the Rolex 24 at Daytona. When he was 78, PLN finished second-in-class (8th overall) at the  Grand-Am Watkins Glen race. Morgan Shepherd, Jim Fitzgerald and Hershel McGriff all were racing at 65+. John Force and Jack Baldwin are still racing. There are countless vintage racers 65 and older.

“It’s not necessarily true that the ‘the older one gets, the faster one was,’” says Simon Kirkby, the director of the Lime Rock Drivers Club, paraphrasing the old racing adage. “The rush of driving a car quickly and safely, that pure enjoyment of lapping a race track, is not reserved only for those born after 1950!”

For driving enthusiasts of a certain age, the Lime Rock Drivers Club has unveiled a new membership option; the just-announced “senior speedster” membership class is designed for men and women 65 and older. It’s priced differently and allows those drivers to take advantage of all weekday Club days – and their choice of any five weekend dates – throughout the year.

“Few if any world-class, professional racing circuits have reached out to the older performance driving enthusiast,” Kirkby says. “They’re under-served, under-recognized. This new membership option addresses these drivers directly.”

The Senior Membership has a $16,500 initiation fee (includes applicable Conn. tax), along with annual dues of $3,630 (ditto). The memberships operate on renewable five-year terms. Like all LRDC memberships, club days include at least four hours of open lapping (no restrictive run groups), professional right-seat coaching, first-class catering, access to two clubhouses, winter driving events, off-site excursions and Lime Rock Park major-event credentials. No previous track experience or high performance driving background is required.

Speaking of age... Kirkby also said that LRDC now allows licensed teens 16 or older to drive Lime Rock’s race track. It had previously been a minimum age of 18. In addition, 15 year olds are now eligible to drive the autocross. Members and guests are encouraged to bring their young drivers to the autocross days to learn and practice the extremely valuable car-control skills lacking in traditional “driver training.”

Membership queries (there are also “Single” and “Family” options) may be directed to Michael Briskie at 603.479.1013 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and Simon Kirkby at 248.761.2729 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Lime Rock Drivers Club, created in 2007 by track president Skip Barber (“Drive your car the way it was meant to be driven”), is Lime Rock’s private membership group for enthusiasts who want to fully enjoy, on a world-famous and historic race track, the cars they normally drive on the street. Cars typically owned by Club Members are high-performing sports cars as well as their own- or rented race cars. World-class coaching comes from LRDC Coaching Chief Simon Kirkby and his hand-selected team of professional drivers. LRDC reserves 40 to 60 private track days per year strictly for the use of its members, plus member races and autocross- and car-control days.

Think fast!
All the Youngsters, Oldsters & In-Betweeners at Lime Rock Park



Jeff Gordon "Hot Laps" Video

Video Screen JG hotlaps

Lime Rock's video ace Jim Perry shot and edited some of the fun everybody had getting Camaro Z/28 hot laps from NASCAR star Jeff Gordon as part of the AARP Drive to End Hunger fundraiser this past Thursday. Great stuff, take a look!


LRDC Director Showed Gordon the Ropes

Gordon coached by Simon 1 600

No matter how good of a race car driver you are, you don't just blast out on to a track you haven't driven before. You get coaching first: the line, references, braking points, turn-ins, the tricky nuances, etc. Simon Kirkby, the director and head coach of the Lime Rock Drivers Club, was Jeff Gordon's coach. Simon spent about 15 minutes with Gordon before the official hot laps began, and he did what he does best: get drivers up to speed quickly and confidently. Don't get us wrong; Simon wasn't going to show Gordon how to do anything -- just where to do it. It was two very good drivers talking the talk and being sympatico. It was cool. And a fun time was had by all...

"I Test-Drove the Lime Rock Drivers Club"


Weather Street Porsche

The Lime Rock Drivers Club is the track’s private membership group for enthusiasts to fully enjoy, on a world-famous and historic race track, the cars they normally drive on the street. But anyone can experience a “test drive” of the Lime Rock Drivers Club.

  The following story is one enthusiast’s recounting of his LRDC “Track Day.” It originally appeared in Challenge magazine, the official publication of the Connecticut Valley Region of the Porsche Club of America. It’s a great read, enjoy...

“I Test-Drove the Lime Rock Drivers Club”
By Jim Adelman

For a track junkie, what could be better than spending an entire day driving cars on a race track? How about spending an entire day driving cars on track being coached by a professional driving instructor?

The PCA’s Connecticut Valley Region concours is an impressive event. But it was really special when my name was called as the winner in a raffle for a Lime Rock Drivers Club Track Day ($1,250). As I deliberated about what to do with my prize, not fully understanding what was being offered, I received a call from Jeanette Veitenheimer, executive administrator for the LRDC. She explained exactly what I was lucky enough to have won, making it all sound very appealing, emphasizing, “You’re going to have a great time!”
So I chose an available day and signed up.

My perception of the Lime Rock Drivers Club had been vague at best. I’ve watched “the others” driving during alternate hours at several CVR Driver Education events and was often curious as to what they were trying to accomplish. There would be a variety of cars driving around the track relatively alone and frequently coming in and out of pit lane. Being a guest of the Club could be enlightening. Besides, I always had an itch to park my car in their reserved paddock area!

From the moment I arrived at the track, Jeanette and the Club team made every effort to make me feel welcome and comfortable, starting with a catered continental breakfast at the Drivers Club Chalet on the hill. After signing a standard waiver, I reviewed how my day would be spent with Simon Kirkby, the Lime Rock Drivers Club Director.

The plan was simple: use the track time and professional coaching to improve my driving.

Simon “The Brit” was my pro driving instructor throughout the day, and he was by far the best “treat” for me. He’s a very experienced race car driver, spanning everything from rallying to the fiercest European open-wheel competition. We rode together for a track orientation, then he checked me out in the Club’s BMW M3 – my first time driving spiritedly with paddle shifters, and a challenge to get used to. After several bouts of inadvertently flashing the headlights and turning on the windshield washers, I settled into following Simon’s expert coaching. 

Simon Ludwig
Simon Kirkby (l.) with a Track Day customer

Four hours of track time made it comfortable and easy to run several laps, pit to discuss what we were working on, then go out and try it all again. The format was always laid back, with lots of time to review what we were attempting to achieve.

Simon occasionally switched seats to demonstrate a point. Obviously, he was capable of driving well above my pace but settled at a speed to which I could relate.

The variety of cars, sportsmanship and skill level of the Club drivers were impressive. The Club Members were all enthusiastic about their cars and most importantly, they were there to have fun and mainly work on improving their driving skills. Just like me!

Following a delicious buffet lunch in the Chalet, prepared by the track’s in-house catering division, we took to the track again to refine what I had been working on all morning. At that point, Simon encouraged me to apply the lessons learned in the M3 while driving my own track car. Naturally more comfortable in my own car, it all started to come together. Simon joined me right-seat as we practiced the earlier routine: drive several laps, pit to discuss, and then back on the track to try it again.

At one point Simon drove my car for a few laps to demonstrate something I needed to see and feel. Wow! It was a real eye opener to experience my car’s potential. I could only imagine how quick he would be with more time in my car. For anyone delusional enough to think that you’re driving your car to its limits, give yourself a treat – and a reality check – by having a pro like Simon drive your car on a track. The exercise is enlightening, educational and humbling when you witness the car’s capability in really talented hands.

The best lesson learned is that improving the car to increase performance is secondary to improving the driver.

When our time on track was over, we returned to the Chalet to relax, have some refreshments, and chat about the day... very civilized, indeed. Even with all the track time, my day flew by, definitely an adrenalin rush. I didn’t realize how exhausted I was until the drive home, sometimes thinking of Jeanette’s promise, “You’re going to have a great time.”

Actually, I had a fabulous time.


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