1000 miles in 5 days
What is Porsche Parade?
This year the Porsche Club of America held its 67th Annual Porsche Parade in Palm Springs, California. Porsche Parade is a week-long series of events to celebrate the brand of Porsche. These events include a concours d’elegance, autocross, competitive rallies, and much more. It's essentially heaven for any Porsche enthusiast with over 1,000 cars in attendance.
Like many other concours d’elegances across the world, this one was held at a golf course as well. Concours d’elegance is French for Competition of Elegance and there were certainly a ton of beautiful cars on display. Despite being a morning event, the weather was unbearably hot at over 100 degrees fahrenheit. However, the display of cars made it all worth it. The finest versions of every type of Porsche were there from classic 356s to a Carrera GT and 918 Spyder, to some vintage racing cars. Everywhere you looked, there was a car that blew you away.
Time Speed Distance Rally
At this event, my mom and I got to try out rallying for the first time. I was the driver and she was the navigator. Our job was to follow a route accurately and to be on time to a series of checkpoints along the way. For every second you were early or late, you were penalized one second. Sounds simple, but every stage was different. At some stages we had to average a specific speed such as “56 miles per hour for 0.3 miles and then 46 miles per hour for 0.7 miles.” Then when you add traffic to the equation, being precise was a big challenge. My mom and I did manage to have a perfect score of 0 on one stage but missed the next turn completely and scored a 180. While we were certainly challenged by this event, we had a ton of fun.
For the first time, I finally got to try out autocross. Autocross is a time trial event held in a parking lot course set up by cones. The goal is to complete the course in as little time as possible without hitting cones. The course is super small in length, it is extremely narrow at parts, the corners come up very fast, and the course overlaps itself which can get very confusing. Like the concours d’elegance, this event was scorching hot as well. You get 4 runs to put in your best time and are allowed to have an instructor in the car with you, however, that run doesn't count for competition. I went out with Paul Kudra, the autocross chair, and a very experienced driver. He was extremely helpful in showing me the best tips and tricks around the course. Unlike a regular race track, you want to drive a super narrow line to cut down your distance as much as possible due to the slow speeds. With the corners coming up super fast, you want to look as far ahead as possible, a great exercise for vision. On my best run, I hit a cone getting me a 2 second penalty. However, I still managed to finish second in my class and had a great time.
The Gimmick Rally is another competitive rally but instead of driving for Time, Speed, and Distance, you complete a scavenger hunt. Our goal was to count the number on every speed limit sign over the 150 mile Palms to Pines route. If the sign was white, the number would count as a positive, if the sign was yellow the number would count as negative. Despite counting every sign we saw, we were still way off on our math and the final number. However, the highlight had to be the incredible roads we got to drive for the first time. With over 8,000 feet in elevation change, it felt like we drove into a different country.
Photoshoot with Randy Wells
After the Gimmick Rally, we had planned on heading back home. That evening I received a message on Instagram from well known car photographer Randy Wells asking to do a photoshoot and story on the Boxster and me. We got the car cleaned up from all of our driving- nothing like washing a very dirty car at midnight! We arrived at 5:30 AM the next morning during sunrise. Randy and his wife were extremely nice and got some amazing photos. Stay tuned to see our feature in an upcoming issue of Porsche Club of America’s Panorama Magazine.
The final day consisted of the biggest event of all, "The Porsche Parade." Over 300 cars drove together to celebrate the week’s festivities. The dramatic moment of the event occurred when a Porsche Boxster caught fire and burned to the ground. Luckily no one was hurt.
After an insanely busy week’s worth of events, my mom and I definitely had a great time. We ended up covering 1,000 miles across 5 days. Although the heat was fatiguing, there wasn't a day where we didn't have fun. Porsche Parade definitely lived up to the hype.
It's not just the cars its the people.
Aug 15, 2023
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