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Deseret Peak Complex

The Tooele County Fair race queens.

Greetings from Tooele, Utah

From the travels and adventures of the 

“World’s #1 Trackchaser”

Lifetime Track #1,781

 

HighlightsThe PlanThe TripThe ExperienceAttractionsRace ReviewVideosPhotosQuick Facts

 

 

WAS WAKING UP IN THE CAR A WINNING IDEA?


THE KEYS TO THE TRIP

If you like hard hitting demo derby action don’t miss today’s video……………more in “More in Race Review”.

 

Eliminate, standardize and mechanize……………..more in “The Plan”.

 

I don’t let William Shatner hold me back………..details in “The Trip”.

 

 

THINGS YOU MIGHT HAVE NOTICED HAD YOU BEEN PAYING MORE ATTENTION IN SCHOOL

 

THE BEST READERS IN RACING TAKE TIME TO CONTRIBUTE

From brand new reader over in Arizona…..

 

Great reading for tonight. Enjoyed reading about your adventure with Carol! She is a trooper for sure…glad to hear she got her trackchasing credits for this one.

 

Sounds like a blast actually…always an adventure!

 

 

The Great Salt Lake

The Great Salt Lake


Onward and upward.

Yesterday’s hotel plan (sleeping in the car!) certainly qualified as a “going in the dumper” outing.  However, today would be much better.  That’s the thing about good planning.  It doesn’t guarantee that everything will go well.  However, a good plan will work much more often than a bad one or no plan at all.

 

I spend the lions share of my trackchasing, before I leave the house, planning.  That makes the time after I leave the house much easier and more enjoyable.

 

Some folks wonder how I have time to plan my trackchasing, do my trackchasing and then produce these reports along with YouTube videos and the like.  Of course, all of this trackchasing activity is in addition to about 50 days of non-trackchasing travel and lots of other personal interests.


Eliminate, standardize and mechanize.

The answer to the above “time-management” question comes from my time working for the Procter & Gamble Distributing Company aka “P&G”.  The company’s mantra was “eliminate, standardize and mechanize” everything.  There was also a fourth item but I guess I eliminated it!  If any of my P&G friends remember what that fourth part was please let me know.

 

People like to do things they are good at even when those activities are not really necessary.  When you eliminate the things in your life that you are good at and that you like to do but aren’t really necessary it frees up time.


Are these things really necessary?

Is there really a reason to make the bed?  My mother thought there was and Carol thinks there is.  I don’t.  Is it really necessary to take sixty minutes to watch a one-hour TV program?  I don’t think so.  I watch every 60-minute TV program in 44 minutes.  Often times I’m multi-tasking while I’m saving those sixteen minutes.

 

Is it necessary to fill up your gas tank every 200-300 miles when you can stop every 400 miles?  I figure if the NASCAR guys want to “fill it to the brim and run it dry” to save time then I can too.  And no, I have never had a problem with my car while doing this over forty years of driving.

 

I provide just a few examples of timesaving measures.  If I thought about it I could name a hundred.  Some folks don’t like to use technology that much.  That’s their call.  However most forms of technology save time and money.  I never seem to have enough of either (time or money).  Nevertheless, I have more than I would if I didn’t use those gadgets”.  Many trackchasers took years to get a GPS unit or a smartphone (I highly recommend the iPhone).  I suspect they don’t know how they did it back in the day before they started using these items.  Some folks are “early adapters” with technology and many are “late adapters”.  I want to come to the party early so I can have the most fun.


Something has to go.

Of course, if you want to do a lot in a quality fashion and not take much time doing it you’re going to have to eliminate those items that you really like to do but that don’t add much value.  With the things that still need to be done you can “standardize” those activities.  Standardization is why the McDonald’s and Wal-Mart’s of the world have put out of business so many enterprises that failed to standardize their activities.

 

Finally, once you have eliminated and standardized as much as possible you need to mechanize the rest.  You don’t mow your lawn with a push mower do you?  Of course, I eliminated lawn mowing back in 1983!  You get the point.

 

As you look at your daily activities what can be eliminated, standardized and/or mechanized?  I’ll bet you might be surprised if you can look at it with a very open mind.  Good luck!

 

 


This was a better hotel for Carol!

This was a better hotel for Carol!


Just like homeless folks.

We woke up this morning in our car in the parking lot of the Days Inn in downtown Spokane, Washington.  We went to bed in Salt Lake City, Utah.  This is what today looked like.

 

Yep!  Just like homeless folks we slept in our car last night.  I didn’t think it was that bad.  Of course, those were MY words.  Carol might have (did have?) a different point of view but you’re reading my blog and not hers.


I had something to make up to “Trackchasing’s First Mother”.

Nevertheless, I was bound and determined to make it up to her.  I think I did.  I secured a very nice Courtyard by Marriott hotel property by using Priceline.com.  The best rate on the hotel’s website offered rooms for two for $149 plus tax.  How much did we pay using Priceline?  Our price was just $65 U.S. plus tax.  Not bad huh?  It was especially good considering the Motel 6 in downtown SLC was charging $66.99.

 

Of course, whenever we get a Marriott property with Priceline I try to get us upgraded.  “But Randy”, the wide-eyed but open to just about any idea Trackchaser Report reader might be heard to ask, “How in the world can you get upgraded when you get your hotel on Priceline.com?”


I don’t let the fact that William Shatner is my partner hold me back.

Folks, first of all it’s a misnomer to think that hotels treat their Priceline guests any differently just because William Shatner helped them negotiate a better price online.  Additionally, as a long-time (really long-time and heavy user) member of the Marriott Rewards program I was granted lifetime “Platinum” status in the Marriott Rewards program.  Thank you Marriott.

 

When I check into a Marriott property do I approach the front desk with my head down because I’m staying there on Priceline?  No, I do not.  I approach the desk with my head up and a big smile.  After I give them my credit card and I.D. I say, “I don’t know if this will help us get a better room or not but I’m a Marriott Platinum member”.  It’s a little bit like saying when you speak to the desk clerk, “I was best friend’s with your brother in high school.  We went everywhere together.  We still stay in touch”.  Folks, it’s called “creating a bond”.


Search and reapply.

I learned much of this in sales during my 30-year business career.  When I sat down in a buyer’s office I immediately scanned the walls for pictures or anything that would tell me what the buyer was interested in or spent his/her free time doing.  If I saw a picture of the buyer playing golf I became a golfer.  If he was out boating in his desktop pictures or enjoying his two young children I became a person most interested in Chriscraft boats or the Cub scouts.  As long as this was done with sincerity and caring it worked like a charm.


Watch out!  We’re being showered with freebies.

How well did it work this afternoon with the desk clerk at the Marriott?  First, she gave us an upgraded king-bedded room.  Of course our room included free Wi-Fi.  Then her assistant who just “happened” to overhear our tale about sleeping in the car last night chimed in with “What time are you leaving in the morning?”

 

I told her we would be out the door at about 7 a.m.  “Would you like to have complimentary buffet breakfasts (a $9.99 per person value) in the morning?”  Well, of course we would.

 

Now we were paying 65 bucks for an upgraded king bedded room with $20 U.S. of breakfast credits.  That made this a BETTER deal than even the Motel 6!  Folks, you make your breaks in life.  It just takes a smile, a few caring and correct words and then the rewards coming flowing back to you.

 

Of course, none of this can ever be done with dishonest gestures or insincere words.  You can be dishonest and/or insincere and still get some of the rewards described above.  However, if you go that route there will be a Higher Being who will judge you when it really counts.  If you get a “thumbs down” then you won’t get into the Courtyard by Marriott or even the Motel 6.  It might be really hot when you check in too.

 



Can't wait until tomorrow.

Can’t wait until tomorrow.


“SLC” is upgrading.

In any given year I will fly into or out of nearly 75 airports.  I’ll use the airlines’ hubs more than anything else.  Salt Lake City is a “hub” (What’s a hub?) for Delta Airlines.  I fly through Salt Lake many times each year.  On this trip I was surprised to see that nearly EVERY food concessionaire had changed since my last visit.  We’re probably talking about more than twenty new eateries.  I found the magnitude of change amazing.  From what I could see the former less than exciting places had been replaced by much better alternatives.  I had never seen this much turnover in an airport before.


A savvy traveler notices the little things.

When we travel it’s always interesting to see what’s different from where we live.  Sometimes those differences are big ideas and many times not.  In Idaho and Utah we encountered Panda Express drive-thru lanes.  We had never seen that in California.

 

Tomorrow, when we hit Oregon we’re looking forward to a Burgerville (What’s a Burgerville?) visit.  Burgerville is a leading Northwestern hamburger fast food chain.  They’re along the lines of In N’ Out and Whataburger, two outstanding regional fast food chains.  Burgerville is noted for the flavor of the month milkshakes.

 

 

Big H - Salt Lake City, Utah

Hires Big H – Salt Lake City, Utah

 

ONE CANNOT LIVE WELL OR SLEEP WELL IF ONE HAS NOT DINED WELL

 

Hires Big H – Salt Lake City, Utah

 

Who says you can’t recreate the past?

I love eating in unique, old-time fun places.  The Hires Big H drive-in in Salt Lake City, which was founded in 1959, fits the bill on many counts.


Highly recommended.

Some time ago I was given a book titled Roadfood.  This group also has a website, www.roadfood.com.  Their slogan is “Your guide to authentic regional eats”.  If you like to eat in “hole in the wall” off the beaten path good places then Roadfood.com is for you.  Some time ago, I became a member of Roadfood and ended up downloading into my GPS unit more than 1,500 Roadfood recommended locations.  Now when I pull into town I simple go to the “custom” locations within my GPS to see what culinary surprise awaits.

 

In Salt Lake City one of those places is the Hires Big H drive-in.  Hires is located in downtown Salt Lake.  Carol and I had been there one other time.  After tonight’s demo derby we popped in once again.


The history of it all.

Carol and I are college sweethearts.  We didn’t know each other during our high school days so we really haven’t spent a lot of time dating in cars or visiting the old time drive-ins of the 1950s and 1960s.  That was reserved for my high school girlfriends.  Tonight we tried to make up for lost time.  On this one special night in Salt Lake City Carol WAS my high school girlfriend.

 

We pulled into Hires and waited for the curbie to come to our car and take our order.  This was exactly how I did in back in my hometown of East Peoria, Illinois at the Steak ‘n Shake (What’s a Steak ‘n Shake?) in 1965.

 

There are very few restaurants nowadays that offer “curb” service with “curbies”.  Curbies have pretty much gone the way of the drive-in movie theater.


What is ‘fry sauce’.

We ordered the homemade onion rings and chili along with a cherry Diet Coke.  Of course, back in 1965 that would have been a simple Cherry Coke.  Our server kept asking us if we wanted “fry sauce”.  At first I had no idea what he was talking about and asked him to repeat himself three times.  “You’re not from around here are you?” he asked.  I get that question a lot!

 

It turns out “fry sauce” was a concoction of mayonnaise and catsup.  Carol told me that was similar to Thousand Island dressing.  I love Thousand Island dressing but don’t think I like mayonnaise and catsup mixed together!  We had a delightful time reliving our childhoods.  When we were ready to go we simply “flashed our lights” and the curbie came a running.  Roadfood.com rocks and so does the Hires Big H location in SLC!

 

 

Ouch!

DESERET PEAK COMPLEX – TOOELE, UTAH

 

 

The founding fathers turned ‘thumbs down’ on demolition derbies.

Demolition derbies have long been the primary motor racing activity at our nation’s county fairs.  I’ve been to more than 200 county fairs.  However, I have seen very few demo derbies and even fewer good ones.

 

You see, trackchasing’s “Founding Fathers” ruled against counting demolition derbies when the first “guidelines” were developed.  I could behave like some trackchasers have and cry, “Even though demo derbies weren’t included in the original guidelines everyone understood that they SHOULD have been”.  Yes, we have always had people who demanded that guidelines that really weren’t guidelines should have been guidelines.  Yes, that logic is both lame, misguided and just plain dumb but……..


What is a demolition derby?

So, since demo derbies don’t count I don’t watch ‘em.  By the way have you ever seen a demolition derby?  Do you know how they work?

 

Actually demo derbies are a bit like boxing.  In boxing your objective is to render your fellow competitor unconscious.  I always felt that was a little extreme.  In demo derbies a certain amount of cars enter an enclosed “ring”.  They then crash into each other, again and again, until only one car can continue.  It IS like boxing isn’t it.

 

Often countable figure 8 racing is run on the same evening as a demolition derby.  In today’s world much of both figure 8 racing and “derbying” is done on and in very small rectangular rings (maybe 50 yards by 40 yards).  The dirt surface (I’ve never seen a DD contested on an asphalt surface) is usually watered heavily creating a muddy quagmire of sorts.  This watering is done to reduce traction, lower speeds and therefore make the contact less vicious and safer for the competitors.


Tonight’s demo was an A+.

Tonight’s deme derby was like none other I had ever seen.  Carol and I both agreed it was the best demolition derby we had watched.  First the ring was much larger than normal.  I would estimate it measured maybe 100 yards by 50 yards.  It was huge.

 

Additionally, the surface was not watered.  With the wind blowing toward the grandstand we figured with no water the dust would be a problem.  However, the racing surface was made up of a sandy soil.  There was very little dust, it didn’t reach the grandstand and it didn’t slow the cars down.

I was amazed at the size of the crowd.


Where did all of these people come from?

The grandstand was absolutely jammed.  There had to be well over 2,000 people at this event.  We were lucky to find to seats in the middle of the stands and high enough to offer a good view.

 

We arrived at the scheduled start time of 6 p.m.  There were more than 200 people in line waiting to get in.  I was very concerned they might sell out and we wouldn’t EVER get in.  However, one of my specialties is “managing” lines.  That doesn’t mean “cutting” in line.  Cutting in line (Europeans are you listening) would be dishonest or rude.  Dishonesty gets you a room without air-conditioning where you never check out.  Right?

 

However, “managing lines” can be a time efficiency idea when worked properly.  The major win tonight was discovering a small sign that read “cash only” at the “Will Call” window.  Most folks wouldn’t think you could buy tickets at the “Will Call” window….but tonight you could.  We bypassed a line of more than 200 people at the regular ticket window with this strategy.  That gave us much better seats and a more comfortable experience that had we just got in the back of a long line of people and waited.  If the “Will Call” experience had not worked we could have still gone to the back of the long line.


Crash, bang, boom.

The demo derby started out with a series of heats.  Each heat started about nine V-8 powered Detroit behemoths.  I have never seen such vicious hits.  At most of the demos I have attended the cars BACK into each other to save their radiators from damage.  Not tonight.  These guys would get in one corner of the ring, then drive full speed (about 30-40 M.P.H.) for 60-80 yards and slam into a competitor.  The crowd went absolutely wild!

 

If you like demo derby events then you won’t want to miss the racing action video listed at the top of this report.  We loved the action and if they had one of these locally we would attend.


They had figure 8 racing too.

Oh, I forgot to mention they had some figure 8 racing too.  It was the traditional county fair F8 racing.  There were nine “miniature” figure 8 racers aka four-cylinders.  They ran two heats and a feature.  After seeing the “take no prisoners” V-8 big iron demo cars the figure 8 racing was, at best, anti-climactic.

 

 

STATE COMPARISONS


Utah

 

 

The Beehive State

 

This evening I saw my 10th lifetime track in the Beehive state, yes the Beehive state.  I only have 1-2 tracks remaining to be seen in Utah.  Many of the Far West states don’t have that many tracks in total.  That’s because the geography is wide and the populations are small.

 

Thanks for reading about my trackchasing,

 

Randy Lewis

World’s #1 Trackchaser

Peoria Old Timers Racing Club (P.O.R.C.) Hall of Fame Member

 

Utah sayings:  Three times the wives means three times the fun!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRAVEL DETAILS


AIRPLANE

Los Angeles, CA (LAX) – Boise, ID (BOI) – 654 miles

 

RENTAL CAR #1

Boise International Airport – trip begins

Post Falls, ID – 414 miles

Spokane International Airport – 443 miles – trip ends

 

AIRPLANE

Spokane, WA (GEG) – Salt Lake City, UT (SLC) – 557 miles

 

RENTAL CAR #2

Salt Lake City International Airport – trip begins

Tooele, UT – 36 miles

 

TRACK ADMISSION PRICES:

State Line Stadium Speedway – $14 ($4 senior savings)

Deseret Peak Complex – $10

 

 

LIFETIME TRACKCHASER COMPARISONS 

 

The three most important trackchasing comparisons to me are:

 

Total lifetime tracks seen

Total “trackchasing countries” seen

Lifetime National Geographic Diversity results

 

 

Total Lifetime Tracks

There are no trackchasers currently within 300 tracks of my lifetime total.  Don’t blame me.

 

1.  Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 1,781

 

 

Total Trackchasing Countries

There are no trackchasers currently within 10 countries of my lifetime total.

 

1.  Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 61

 

 

Current lifetime National Geographic Diversity results

 

1.  Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 5.29

 

 

That’s all folks!  Official end of the RLR – Randy Lewis Racing Trackchaser Report

[WPP][/WPP]


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