Parade 2011: Reflections on an Event Well Done
September 1, 2011
By Harvey Yancey
Photos by Harvey Yancey and Sean Steinbrueck
Detailing in progress at the Concours Prep Area
Al Citro and family with his award winning 1958 Speedster (notice the matching shirts).
Unveiling of the 1973 Porsche 911T restored by Porsche Classic

The following article is a collection of my thoughts and observations during the recent Porsche Parade in Savannah GA.

Sunday, July 31: Having just arrived back from India the previous evening and fighting off a severe lack of sleep the previous 36 hours, I was not really looking forward to the drive to Savannah (approx.. 4 hours from Charlotte). But once I got on the road the fatigue diminished and the drive became a bit more fun. I credit that to the fact that I had not driven my 993 any further than Hickory this year.

Upon arrival in Savannah (actually Hutchinson Island, across the river) I found a reasonable spot in the expansive parking lot adjacent to the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center which is where most of the Parade activities were to take place.

Parade Check-In was painless and always provides a great opportunity to catch-up with PCA friends who invariably staff the check-in stations.

One of the best spectacles at any Parade is the Concours Prep Area. Upon arrival at my first Parade (2005 in Hershey), John Nelson recommended that we all go to the prep area, which that year was the parking deck next to the Hershey Lodge. I had never seen the level of cleaning and detailing that I witnessed there. I quickly learned that the hard core competitors have a set of roll-on/ roll-off tire and wheels and a set of show tires and wheels, which are usually in plastic bags btw.

Later that evening was the Pirelli Welcome Party, which is the big kickoff for the week. I finally made it back to the condo at Tybee Island around midnight after negotiating a lot of standing water resulting from severe thunderstorms that evening.

Monday, August 1: The Concours and Historic Display teams were sweating bullets due to the rain the previous evening and that the forecast was for rain. However, upon examination of the grounds at Forsythe Park it appeared that the drainage was excellent and the rollout began in earnest around 5AM.

Since Parade judges apparently do not find the humor in a car with no provenance having racing ‘patina’, I chose to just participate in the Corral. Luckily we did not have to be onsite until later in the morning, but rain continued to threaten with dark overcast skies.

I made a couple passes through the Historic Display (organized by our own John Meek) and the Concours competitors.

On my second pass I ran into Al Citro, who is the owner of the 1958 Speedster that won the People’s Choice Award and Honorary Judges Award at the Charlotte Parade. I have never met a more humble and excited participant at any Parade. And apparently his hobby has infected the entire family.

Later in the morning the EC and representatives from Porsche AG, PCNA and Porsche Classic unveiled the 1973 911T that underwent restoration at Porsche Classic in Germany. No final number was given as to the total cost, but with 1,400+ hours of labor invested excluding the original purchase price of the car ($7,000), parts and transportation costs, I am guessing close to $200,000.

Later that evening my wife, Vivian, accompanied me to the President’s Reception, which was held at the famous Olde Pink House in downtown Savannah. An excellent venue and great place to catch-up with everyone.

Tuesday, August 2: The order of the day was tours, including:
• Driving Tour to Jekyll Island
• Scenic Drive to Hilton Head Island
• Rose Hill Plantation Tour and Scenic Drive
• Bus Tour to Brumos Autowerks

But since I was not sure what my schedule would look like with my entire family coming to Parade I passed on signing up for anything. For those not participating in the tours the three Race Simulation systems setup by Fanatec was the main entertainment. While I briefly had the best lap time, the numbers continued to drop pushing me off the ‘Top 5’ board. Once you dropped out of the top 5 you could run again, which I did a couple of times bettering my previous times, but I finally hit a wall (figuratively, not literally) and called it a day.

Later in the day was the traditional Ice Cream Social, followed that evening by the Concours Banquet. One of the surprises of the evening was an impromptu offer from Porsche AG to host a trip for several multidecade Parade attendees to the Porsche Museum and Factory.

At the end of the evening the Carolinas Region was well represented bringing home several Concours trophies.

Wednesday, August 3: Today was the first day of the Parade Autocross, later renamed the ‘Hot-O-Cross’. Due to some traffic coming from Tybee, I was a bit late in getting to the autocross site for my run group (scheduled for 10AM). Upon my arrival I was summarily chastised by one of the autocross workers for my tardiness. Once he finished getting his point across, I proceeded to the tent for the driver’s meeting. At the meeting I quickly realized that I had chosen the wrong class for my car (I was in S09 but should have been in P09) .Talk about setting a bad example! Luckily the Autocross Chair took mercy on me and allowed me to switch to the correct run group, which was unfortunately the same time the following day.

Emily Barbee of Greensboro won first prize for amateur art at the Savannah Parade. The painting shows me wiping off my 911. Emily used a photo as basis for her painting. This was Emily’s firstpainting.

– Phil Lawrence
Sacramento Valley Region.

Harvey’s 1997 993 Coupe on display in the Forsythe Park Porsche Corral .

John Meek and Dave Brown with RennGruppe Motorsports giving a presentation at the Historic Display

Vivian enjoying a quiet moment on the terrace at the Olde Pink House.

Thursday, August 4: Back to the Autocross course… but at least I was on time today! But geez, talk about HOT! I heard that the temp hit 103… and combined with humidity it was pretty miserable. Had there not been a bit of a breeze I think that I would have probably have called it a day after my first run.

But I am glad that I hung in there as I got a 5th place for my class, coming pretty close to one of our local autocross aces, John Meek. There was a 4 second gap between John’s best time and the 3rd place finisher. All of the top 3 in our class were running lightened RS Americas with fresh uber sticky tires.

Friday, August 5: Although Parade had scheduled events through Saturday, we decided that 6 days was going to be it for us. I drove in early for the Kumho Technical and Historic Quiz, which started at 8AM. The quiz took me about 45 minutes to complete and then I was on my way back to Tybee to pack up.

On the way back from Parade, I found out that the Carolinas Region had won the 2011 Website Contest Award for Class 5 Regions (Largest Regions) beating out 12 other Regions for the honor. Congrats to Don Roof who has been the architect and the driving force behind our revamped and now award winning website!

Ultimately, the drive back to Charlotte was thankfully uneventful and thus concluded a great week at Parade 2011. Hopefully when we attend out next Parade, most likely 2013 in Michigan, I will not just be getting back from overseas the day before.