November 2016

Dear Friends --

The Carrera Panamericana was over a few weeks ago and were we 4th? Or were we 3rd?

Both it turns out, but eventually credited 4th.

Here is what happened. During first day's stages, one of the organizer's timing crew made a huge error, and our time for a speed stage was inadvertently given to us as three minutes more than it really was. The crew confused our car number with another's.

Compounding the error, and in reality our own fault for not closely checking the times daily, was that until the end when we saw the timing error, was that we did not protest the mistake -- until it was too late.

So -- we were officially 4th, though in reality, 3rd.

Doug, Manuel and the great grandson of Pancho VillaManuel Iguiniz, my new (and brilliant) navigator, did a terrific job, called all the corners correctly, and for a first timer used to navigating in a BMW Mini, he was immediately comfortable with 'Olds in Name Only' 650hp, and was even cool when we did an 80mph slide along a guardrail -- on his side of the car of course!

3rd? 4th? It doesn't matter. The experience and adventures are what mattered.

The Spanish Colonial towns we visited in central Mexico are themselves well worth a visit. Puebla, about 50-60 miles southeast of Mexico City, has the most magnificent Cathedral. It also has an incredibly beautiful library designed and built in the 1700's. Absolutely magnificent.

We read a lot about the mess in Mexico. Forget it. The country is stunning, the people friendly, the culture vibrant, the food and wines varied all over. Mexico City has gorgeous parks and world class museums. Well worth a visit.

2017 will be the 30th anniversary of the Carrera. Manuel and I will be back, gunning for First.


Douglas A.J. Mockett