Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline March 2017

New Directions
Monthly Column of Driving Events

The 2017 Driving Events are almost here and we have a pretty complete (but still preliminary) calendar of events ready. But before we go there, I would like to share some statistics about the previous season. In the 2013-2016 Driving Events Summary table, in this issue, you’ll see the numbers for events and participation for the four years that the MG Clubs of Chicago have joined forces. Let’s go down the 2016 column and make a few comments.


In 2016, we had 22 events in total. Since 2014, the second year of our combined program, the total number of events has remained more or less the same.


The total number of participants (members who came out at least once during the season) is down a little bit. It went from 108 in 2015 down to 98 in 2016, a loss of 10 which came in its entirety from the CMGC side. The numbers of 21 VMGCC members and 13 dual members were exactly the same as in 2015. As a percentage of the total membership these numbers become even more impressive. The CMGC has about 250 members and with 64+13=77, about 30% or one-third of the members came out to a driving event at least once. Not bad at all, but wait until you see the VMGCC. With about 65 members; 21+13=34 which is more than 50%. Or in other words, more than half of the VMGCC members joined us at least once in 2015.


Although the CMGC had 10 less members participating in 2015, those that did come out, did so more often and the total number of entries went up from 363 in 2015 to 372 in 2016. The increase coming almost all from the CMGC side.


The number of entries per event type is of course dependent on how many of each event type we had. Therefore, looking at the average number of entries per event type makes more sense.


And the average number of entries per event went up significantly in 2016 to 16.9 from 15.1 the year before. That is on average almost two more entries for all events. Our Tours went up by about eight but also the averages for our Rallies and Other Events grew (with about three and two resp.) in 2016. Average Autocross participation was down but that is probably more the result of some mechanical problems with the MGs than a lack of driver interest.


Not all members drive MG’s to our events. If you take out the OMs (Other Makes) we had a total number 300 entry with MGs. With 8 pre-war MG entries and 62 T-series cars the oldest group of MGs remained as active previous years. The increase from 281 in 2015 to 300 in 2016 came mainly from the ‘modern’ MGs with substantial more Midgets, MGA, and MGBs in our driving events.


And finally, we drove a lot of miles in our MGs again in 2016. The estimated total of all our driving events was 11,000 miles. And if you take the middle between Mack’s Golden Pheasant and the Pizza Joynt as the virtual garage of all participating MGs, we drove another 24,500 miles to and from the events. That is a total of 35,500 miles, or almost


1.5 times the circumference of the Earth, in cars that are, at best, 37 years old. We may have seen a few minor breakdowns, but as far as we know, all 300 MG entries returned to their virtual garage without any major technical malfunction and under their own, MG, power. Better evidence of the quality and reliability of MG and the knowledge and expertise of the owner/mechanics who keep our cars on the road is difficult to imagine.

Let’s do it all over again in 2017, this year. The calendar, also printed in this issue, looks very good. It begins, traditionally, with the four Spring events; Tune-up , Brunch, Chicken Run, and Tour (to Oshkosh, WI with a visit to the Experimental Aircraft Museum in the planning). Then, in June we have two, more or less, new events.

First, the Land’s End Rally is back. Dean & Kerry Hickenlooper ar e or ganizing the r etur n of the longest running rally in our 41/51 years of existence. I recommend that you Google Land’s End Trial and Old Number One to see the historic importance of this event; it was the start of everything MG that we (still) know today. In my next column, I will talk about it with some more detail, but if you want to support Dean and Kerry, please pencil June 4 on your calendar and make sure that your MG is in good driving, steering, and braking order.

And second, The Dan Herman Memorial Tour Secrets of Jo Daviess County Tour , is also back this year thanks to Ray & Sue Hansen and Tim & Jamie Schafer. You have alr eady been able to read about this in David Novak’s weekly coming events email.

In July, we have a few openings for organizers. We would like to return to the drive-in movie theater on North Avenue, and in case the movie that plays on July 2nd is not to our liking we can make an ad-hoc decision to go for an ice-cream ride instead. I am looking for an organizer for this idea. The next weekend, July 7 or 8 would be a good date for a Lucas Rally. Rich Meservey & Sundy Mead have r elocation plans and it is unlikely that they are able to do this event again. If you decide to organize it this year, you can play with the format, the day, and the time of the rally. Please let me know if you would like to take this on. I am sure that Rich an Sundy as well as other experienced organizers will be happy to help you get started.

On July 22, we return to Gurnee for Ray’s Morris and MG picnic (of course it is Ray and Mardee’s event, but you knew that, right?). We are trying to make it a garage tour again on the way up there, unless we find someone in the Gurnee area who can make a rally that ends at Ray and Mardee’s House. Ray has some suggestions for nice MG routes but doing the rally and hosting the picnic at the same time is not possible.

That covers the first half of the season, in my next column we’ll talk about more details about the second half. All I am asking you to do now is to block the dates on all your smart phone, computer, tablet, refrigerator, garage, work, and family calendar. And of course, think about helping with the organization of the Movie/Ice cream night, the Lucas Rally, and maybe a rally around Gurnee. All together this has become a long column but before I close I would like you to look at
(Continued on page 6)

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