In a recent post Gerie Bledsoe asked for every one's opinion on a few important topics regarding La Carrera Panamerica so here is my take on them...
PLANS FOR NEXT YEAR – EXPRESS YOUR OPINION ON FOUR ISSUES
On these four items you should make your personal views known to Eduardo Leon at email@example.com. Feel free to give him your brief, unvarnished opinion on each.
NUMERO UNO. Right now the Carrera Office (Eduardo Leon) is inclined to start the race again in Huatulco. Do you want to start the race there next year?
The other option is Tuxtla Gutierrez.
Personally, I favor Tuxtla, since it is part of the original race and it is a real Mexican town, mostly populated with Mayan descendants. But I can understand the allure of the beach in Huatulco, and can certainly endure the heat and humidity a second time.
Gary's Opinion... "Personally I have not been to Huatulco but I did have the opportunity to get a LOT of feedback from many teams and the general consensus was Huatulco was not a great experience for numerous reasons especially when compared to many other familiar locations veterans have been to. Furthermore I believe Gerie's reasons for not returning to Huatulco are dead on. How in the hell does a beach resort fit in to La Carrera Panamericana mindset anyway and it certainly has no historical significance whatsoever???"
NUMERO DOS. How about the drive to Guadalajara to visit the village of Tequila?
Personally, I thought it was a very long day in the saddle, just for a nice dinner and fiesta. It was great to have a Mexican band sing “Under the Board Walk” a capella. (Only the bride and groom were missing!)
Gary's Opinion... "This one's a no brainer. Not one person that I spoke to enjoyed the long drive to dinner that night and it was way too much to ask of them. There are not many but without a doubt my biggest complaint regarding dinners/awards during La Carrera Panamericana is they are not well organized and waste so much of what could be quality time. Instead, teams who really need to work on their cars and get a lot of much needed rest are rushed into finding some out of the way location for what is typically boring and the food isn't all that either. It's more like being held hostage than anything as teams are forced to wait until the results are handed out usually very late into what has already been a VERY LONG DAY. Personally I would much rather enjoy a dinner with a few friends and get out to enjoy a few sites and to my room. Get the results ready at a decent time or have them available early the next morning. Let the teams have to "alone time" to see some of Mexico at these beautiful cities.
NUMERO TRES. Do you want to return to Mexico City next year?"
Gary's opinion... "Mexico City is an amazing place to see but NOT when you're forced to deal with traffic. If Mexico City is to be enjoyed you need several days to do it right and even then you NEVER drive your own car. You simply take a cab. This year many teams got lost even while attempting to keep up with police escorts and the frustration level was extremely high. While endurance racing can be stressful there is no need to take it from stressful to high anxiety which is exactly what Mexico City is to La Carrera Panamericana teams and service crews. Reminds me of a doctor performing a heart transplant and then deciding to check out the patients appendix while he's there. Take advantage of the new by-pass and forget Mexico City."
NUMERO QUATRO. Do you want me back as North American Coordinator?
If so, let Lalo know.
Gary's opinion... "Losing Gerie Bledsoe from LCP would be like losing a limb. In this case more like both legs. The body would still be able to wave it's arms and say "Look at Me!" but it would still go no where."