Here's more of a run down of the meet. Many thanks for all the laughs everyone! We're in for next year (and are willing to help with any planning)! Mike and John, I can't thank you enough!!!
Bill, Bob, Keith, Stan C and Lindsey descended on Indianapolis breaking in the hotel parking lot for a weekend of late night shenanigans. While there was lots of talk about cleaning, little was actually accomplished. Most of our time was spent catching up, talking mods, and sharing excitement over the upcoming meet.
Following breakfast we swung by John Benjamin's home to visit. No one answered the door so we tagged the house with a club brochure and wiper card. Having some time before the track opened, we drive through the city of Indianapolis and checked out Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts! Despite Siri and Bill's attempts to navigate for Bob, we nearly missed a turn to the track and saw Fire M screeching on two wheels to make the right turn...we should have learned from this near miss getting to the track (it would happen again before the weekend was over)! As we approached, excitement filled the car as we took in the stadium. Entering the track we were awe-struck by everything!
Our first day at the track was amazing! The group was lucky to have Bob there as a tour guide because otherwise I'm sure we would have missed a lot (there's A LOT to take in!!). We checked out some practice laps on the track, the museum, and had delicious pork tenderloin (mud flap) sandwiches for lunch. A common surprising factor to the group was the sheer size of the track. While it's 2.5 miles around, the infield is massive. There's 4 holes of golf, lots of land, a museum, the team garages, RV park for the teams, and much, much more. Just seeing the pagoda, the pole, the bricks, the cars, - the whole ambiance was just awesome!!
We left the track and headed back to John's house where I'm pretty sure Bill surprised John's wife! It was an awkward encounter at first but we all figured it out and got to have a nice visit with John! Great to see him doing well and we continue to wish him a speedy and complete recovery!
While we visited with John, many others had arrived so we all met up for dinner at the Green Street Pub. We had a great time catching up with everyone else that had arrived. As we left the parking lot, we added Justin and Matt, his dad, who happened to stop at the shopping plaza we were in to buy some cleaning supplies. They noticed all the Ms parked outside and knew we couldn't be far. As we left the restaurant it was hard to move the group back to the hotel as we're so use to parking lot hangouts. Apparently any parking lot will do for this group!!
Once back at the hotel, John joined us again to welcome everyone to Indy and visit for a bit. It was great to talk to everyone about their rides and of course, late-night shenanigans! As the group dwindled down to a few, those few took the "sleep is optional" claim to heart and pulled an all-nighter! Chris, Robert, Bob, and Keith spent the entire night working on removing the pin striping from Chris's M and tweaking their own.
Meeting in the parking lot at 6:00am, the group was off to the track! Bob was lead car and will not live down his mistake in route to the track (He dodged the first one by squealing onto the correct road the day before - today, he was not so lucky). Luckily we did arrive to the correct location and were lined up for our lap on the track. After Mike made contact with the photographer, we were on our way! The group looked great on the track! Many cool pictures were captured of the Ms and the drivers. We took in the banked turns, the huge bleachers, the significant divots in the side walls, and the excitement of crossing the bricks at the finish line! Many thanks to Bob, Cory, and Mike for allowing Bill, Stan C, and Lindsey to drive their Ms on the track. It was a generous offer of an unique experience and we all very much appreciated it! As we exited the track we parked together and were giddy as we walked to the Mayor's breakfast. Literally, Lindsey's face hurt from smiling so big!
Entering through a gauntlet of Princesses, we were shown to our tables. Both Mike, Justin, and Stan C got pictures with the ladies! Breakfast was delicious and we discovered the utensil on the table was in fact a ladle, not a candle snuffer! The crowning of the Queen and conversation with Chip Ganassi were exciting and the group appreciated this special opportunity. As the breakfast ended the rain rolled in and put only a short hold on things. With no cars on the track, we walked the garages to see the crews tweaking the cars, giving interviews, and passing time while the rain fell. It was easy to keep the group together as we all just had to look up to see Bob and Ron's very tall checkered hats! They were very easy to spot and received many compliments and requests of where others could buy them.
The rain lifted and the dryers entered the track - goodness, were they LOUD! It took them quite a while to get the track into shape where the qualifying laps could begin but at 1:30pm the first car thundered by the group sitting in the stands! It was exciting to see them race and aim for a place high on the pole. We even joined John's son-in-law's group for a bit to share a pickled egg and cheer on the drivers!
Dinner found us at a reservation made by John at a delicious restaurant. Of course it wouldn't be a club dinner without harassing the wait staff - too many ice teas! With a toast to Mike and John for planning and a thank you for all who attended, we enjoyed a great meal. As we left the restaurant, once again finding ourselves in a parking lot, there was a M parked in the lot (not a club car) with temporary tags. Of course it was tagged with club info and our hotel address but before the group could leave, Bob and Cory were back in the restaurant asking around for the owner. Believe it or not but Matt had owned it for only three days and stopped over to visit us at the hotel. He was swarmed as he drove in and it was cool to see current members orienting Matt to his new ride! We hope this interaction was a successful membership recruitment and that Matt will be a member sharing in the club and our knowledge soon.
Parking lot shenanigans included a test drive for Stan C and Lindsey in Stan's car. WOW, that thing is fast! Tom worked on replacing his clock, Louie relaxed after a hard day's work changing out the rotors of his M. It was a true demonstration of what this club stands for...as people worked on their cars Louie happened to have a bulb for Bob's headlight and a cruise control fitting for Chris. Members helping members everywhere you look!
We held our Club show Sunday morning and were joined by John for the judging and awards! Congrats to the winners of the Indy 2013 awards: Sight and Sound - Robert, Most Cruisin' - Igor, Indy's Choice - Keith, Best in Show - Bob. The Ms looked great and it's obvious all the work and passion that each member puts into their ride! So great in fact, an impromptu photo shoot sprung up! As the afternoon neared, the group started to depart and one small group headed to the track.
We must have looked like regulars entering our last day at the track. As we neared the gate to enter, a man asked us if we would help them test the bag search system. Conveniently he would give us tickets and Bill still needed one! Secret Agent Bill Hoppe was of course the one to attempt to smuggle in a bottle of beer! While we all agreed if we had actually been trying to smuggle glass bottles into the track we wouldn't have simple placed it on top of items in a backpack, the security did their job and tossed the beer. With a thumbs up to the security guy and having done our service for the day, we continued on with a few hours at the track. We picked up some souvenirs, saw the Borg-Warner Trophy, watched cars doing practice laps, and enjoyed another delicious mud flap sandwich!
As 3:00pm neared and a long drive loomed for us, Bill and Bob were the last two at the track, and found themselves hanging in the hotel parking lot with one M left for the night. I guess they didn't get enough from the weekend as they arrived in Carlisle PA to our hotel in July! They're ready to keep the party going!
Keith: As always, I'm thankful to you for making me a part of this amazing group! Your excitement to make the trek to Indy and include my dad is so appreciated. The work you've done on the M over the past few weeks is amazing and I'm so proud of you for accomplishing what you did with it. Your vision for a car is impressive and your execution even better. Thanks for all you do to keep "this thing of ours' going!!
Stan C: It was such a pleasure to be able to make the trip to Indy with you and to share in the excitement of the Indy Motor Speedway together! I'm so thankful to have a dad like you to have taught me to appreciate life's experiences, value good friends, and more about cars than any other girl I know! I'm proud to be your daughter and am even more proud to share my car family with you!
Bill: In true Bill fashion, it was great to spend an extended weekend with you! Thank you so much for putting together yet another great club newsletter! It's always nice to share an adult beverage with you and I look forward to more in Carlisle. Top 5 lines of the weekend - when traveling with Bob you had two rules: no beer and dustless snacks!
Bob: If there's one word to describe your contribution to the club, its selfless! You helped numerous other members with their Ms in the parking lot and are open in sharing your endless knowledge about the car and cleaning. Thanks for sharing your excitement of the Indy Motor Speedway with us! Your passion and knowledge made it even more exciting for the rest of us.
Stan: Thanks for demonstrating the extent of your Challenger to my dad and I! It's was such a thrill! As always, your stories and jokes are one of a kind. It simply wouldn't be a 300M meet without you!
Chris: It was such a pleasure to meet you and I'm so happy to now include you in my car family! You're a very passionate person with a good eye, a good heart, and a great personality! Can't wait to see the other pictures you took from the weekend!
Justin and Matt: So wonderful to meet you and include you in the 300M family! Justin, your car looks great, keep up the good work! It's nice to see new young blood contribute to the group and I look forward to seeing you soon!
Cory: Always a pleasure to see you...it had been way too long! Many, many thanks again for allowing my dad to drive your M on the track on Saturday. It means so much more to have club members reaching out and including my dad - a true demonstration of family! Your M looks great and I look forward to seeing it again in Carlisle (nudge nudge)!!
Mike: Wow! I don't think there's enough thank yous to express my gratitude for all that you did for this meet! Knowing how much goes into planning a meet, I have lots of appreciation for your efforts and the success of the meet. You are a true demonstration of what our club stands for. Endless thanks to you for allowing me to drive your M on the track! It was truly a once in a lifetime experience and I'm thankful to have shared it with you. You're enthusiasm for this event and the club is amazing and your outfits are always a hit!
John: Where to start?! Similarly to Mike, there aren't enough thank yous to tell you my appreciation for your time and effort to put this meet together! Everything, literally everything was perfect and we owe it all to you! It was great to see you up and about only a few weeks post surgery and I hope that we were able to lift your spirits a little. We certainly missed you while at the track and it only could have been better with you with us! Your dedication and generosity to the club is amazing and I'm very thankful for all of your efforts. May your recovery continue to be quick and easy!!!
Robert: Even though you've moved to Detroit, it's great to have had the opportunity to see you! It's always nice to see Luna and the work you've put in certainly shows. I especially liked your tactic for catching some zzzs at the breakfast after being up all night - good form!
Igor: So wonderful to get to see you again!! Your dedication to attending club meets is amazing and I continue to be impressed. Thank you very much for all that you do to get to a meet! It's been fun to see your adventures this time and I wish you safe travels back to Russia! Hope to see you again soon!
Rick and Shirley: Very nice to meet you both! Hanging in the parking lot and meals were entertaining with you two around! I hope that we're able to see you again soon at another meet.
Tom: Great to meet you after seeing so many pictures of your M! It's obvious you have put a lot into your ride and it certainly shows! Great to have time in the parking lot to hang out!
Louie: You're a hard working member who puts a lot into their car and it shows! You're excitement for the 300M and generosity for other members shows and it was a pleasure to meet you!
Ron: So nice to meet you after seeing your name on the BOD for 2 years now! You're a great guy and your passion for the M really shows. It was great to spend time with you walking around the track and hanging in the parking lot. I look forward to seeing you again soon!
Josh: While your visit on Sunday was short, it was great to see you! Your passion for 300M living on is obvious as you seek out parts and supple other club members with crucial parts that they need. Hope to see you in Carlisle this year!
Travis and Michelle: So nice to meet you after hearing Bob's late night drunk calls. Your appreciation for the 300M and the modifications that individuals do is great and it's easy to see that it's a car that you enjoy.
There were so many highlights to Indy 2013 and we owe them all to Mike and John for their efforts in putting together a phenomenal meet! Their commitment to the club and desire for all members to enjoy themselves leaves them selflessly giving to other members. As always, catching up with old friends and meeting new ones is one of my favorite parts to any 300M club event. Experiencing Indy for the first time with so many others was exhilarating to share. I continue to be in awe of the 300M club and its members. You all really are an exceptional group of people and I'm so thankful to know you. I strongly encourage anyone considering attending a meet to reach out, take the plunge, and book the trip. The 300M may be the common denominator but the quality of fellow members is what amazes me! This group is unbelievably welcoming, inclusive, and generous! I'm always so happy to see our car club family grow and look forward to seeing everyone at Carlisle in July!!
2023 Club Treasurer
Ride of the Month Winner: September 2017, May 2019, December 2022
Ride of the Year Winner: 2022
My what, my why, and my how: