The Laguna Seca Follies | Journal

Aerial view of the observe in 2018 | Laguna Seca photograph

For John Narigi, the brand new common supervisor of the Laguna Seca Recreation Area that features WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, we should supply our most heartfelt welcome to the enterprise of motor racing, natch. However sadly, that’s the place our optimistic view of the change of guardianship of the observe from the Sports activities Automotive Racing Affiliation of Monterey Peninsula (SCRAMP) after 57 years of administration will finish.

John Narigi | IHSMP photograph

Who would have thought that the attractive Monterey Peninsula would have a County Board that resembles a collective of probably the most corrupt Chicago Aldermen? Final fall, in what was one of the vital blatant quid-pro-quo strikes that I’ve seen since transferring from the Windy Metropolis 10 years in the past, the keys to Laguna Seca have been handed to, by far, the least-qualified petitioner.

Supervisor Chris Lopez | Monterey County photograph

Narigi himself made vital donations to key board members, and it has been reported by the Voice of Monterrey Bay that he’s beneath investigation “by the state Honest Political Practices Fee into allegations of marketing campaign cash laundering and different attainable violations of election legislation. Among the many recipients of the contributions beneath scrutiny have been the campaigns of Monterey County supervisors John Phillips and Chris Lopez.

Supervisor john Phillips | Monterey County photograph

“The grievance to the FPPC raises questions on greater than
$60,000 in contributions to Phillips and $10,000 to Lopez and extra
questions on what may very well be impermissible coordination of marketing campaign actions
by candidates and political motion committees through which Narigi has been closely

What’s even worse is that the 300-some volunteers who’ve stored the observe working by SCRAMP have been alienated, and they don’t seem to be seemingly coming again.

In response to a press launch issued by the observe on July 7, “The administration of the Laguna Seca Recreation Space has established a brand new division to help and work with the quite a few service organizations and 250-plus devoted volunteers who previously comprised the volunteer base of the Sports activities Automotive Racing Affiliation of the Monterey Peninsula (SCRAMP).

“Lately, after months of contract discussions with a
choose group of officers of the Laguna Seca Volunteer Affiliation, who have been
former SCRAMP officers, the affiliation decided to not proceed discussions
with A&D Narigi Consulting LLC, per an e mail the affiliation despatched to

It ought to be famous that negotiations for the previous SCRAMP volunteers, now generally known as Laguna Seca Volunteer Affiliation, broke down in early June after two months when the LSVA felt that they may not proceed.

Classic open-wheeled F5000 automobiles race down the famed ‘Corkscrew” curve at Laguna Seca | Rolex photograph

In a letter from LSVA to Narigi’s group, it was
acknowledged by  the volunteers group that “It
grew to become obvious throughout these negotiations that there’s a lack of know-how
of volunteers and a scarcity of respect for the volunteers.

“Due to these and different issues, the Administrators of the
Laguna Seca Volunteer Affiliation have voted to finish all negotiations for now to
present skilled volunteers to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.  The
Affiliation can be open to fruitful discussions sooner or later if a real
partnership may very well be agreed upon.”

Laguna Seca has subsequently initiated a brand new division to
work intently with the organizations who wish to proceed volunteering at occasions,
in addition to assistant administrators and people.

laguna seca
The California race observe hosts premier vintage-racing occasions | WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca pictures

Kalina McKinney is the brand new volunteer coordinator at Laguna

 “The people whom I’ve communicated with are
passionate about returning as ambassadors of WeatherTech Raceway Laguna
Seca,” McKinney stated. “I’m drastically inspired by the responses and information
base they’re sharing. Now, we simply have to get again on observe.”

Pun apart, actually there are these people who simply
love Laguna Seca. I’m one among them. It’s a improbable observe, however now the entire
state of affairs has grow to be a quagmire. Some fear that it won’t be a observe for a
entire lot longer.

There are lots of legendary tracks which have fallen to the
rising costs of the actual property they occupy. There are nonetheless many on the market
that mourn the lack of Riverside to what’s now only a dumpy sprawling retail
space. Many assume that Narigi has positioned himself to money in on turning the
beloved observe into housing.

Those that argue that the land can’t be repurposed are
unsuitable. The U.S. army deeded the land to the county a long time in the past – so it’s
goal can change by the hands of a corrupt board with an insider managing the

Would volunteering on the observe be good or unhealthy? It’s a precept subject. An absence of volunteers would collapse the infrastructure of Laguna Seca, making it not viable as a worthwhile entity – it actually was mismanaged financially by SCRAMP through the previous a number of years, which has led to the county’s vote.

Laguna Seca

However then those that have been alienated might come again and
do their service to the long-lasting pavement. Success remains to be not assured, however
not less than there can be infrastructure. My intestine is that nobody in energy at
Laguna Seca has any long-term plans for racing.

Just a few years in the past, when an interim contract was awarded to SCRAMP, there have been different gamers. My choose was a bunch known as “Associates of Laguna Seca” headed by Bruce Canepa. He had a bunch of very rich and highly effective racer sorts, comparable to Walmart inheritor Rob Walton, who have been able to inject hundreds of thousands upon hundreds of thousands of {dollars} into the success of the observe.

The entire thing simply appears too fishy – and that isn’t simply
the scent from Monterey Bay. However  hey,
the entire planet is on fireplace for the time being, so who cares a few dumb race

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