Indianapolis, IN - The 2007 Challenge Championship, July 31 through August 4, was a great event. Cliff Burk, North Central Regional Director and President of Jaguar Association of Greater Indiana, and his fellow club members had a week packed full of car and social events. The kick-off event on Tuesday was a bus trip to the Dr. Richard and Diana Foster's auto and memorabilia collection.
On Wednesday, a rally was conducted and a trip was offered to Conner Prairie Living Museum. Conner Prairie in Fishers, Indiana, is a living history farm and museum recreates part of life in the 19th century, similar to Colonial Williamsburg.
Thursday was slalom day. We arrived Thursday morning, early enough for me to meet up with our Jaguar Club of Pittsburgh president, Gary Kincel, and head out to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Upon arriving at the Speedway, we saw a variety of very special Jaguars including a pair of D-Types owned by Gary Bartlett. Gary Hagopian's E-Type with a fresh silver paint job was as fast as it looked. Another eye-catching Jaguar was a 2 ½ Liter Mk V sporting an unusual Jaguar mascot.
At the luncheon, we saw JCOP member Scott Drab and Jennifer Weaver. They had decided to spend the entire week and take advantage of all the Challenge had to offer. After lunch, it was back to the Speedway for the Lap of the Track. The site of more than 100 Jaguars was very impressive. The range was from the Mk V to a new, 2007 XK. Also represented was the S-Type of Chief Judge of Friday's Concours Phil Wert, a D-Type, XKs, several E-Types of all three types and body styles, several XJ-Ss, XJ6s, XJ8s and XK8s.
Thursday evening we attended a cocktail party at the Crowne Plaza, with an excellent array of hors d'oeuvres. JCNA president Dennis Eynon presented the Slalom and Rally winning owners a very attractive Jaguar statue award. The evening gave everyone an opportunity to mingle with JCNA members from all over the United States, Canada and Mexico. We spent time with representatives of the Nation's Capital Jaguar Club, Jaguar Association of Central Ohio and a member of the Florida Club. Thursday early afternoon was also the judges meeting for the Friday Concours d'Elegance where JCOP members Bryan Williams and Don Johnson, along with the other judges, received instructions for Friday's big event.
The Concours had more than 100 Jaguars participating in the Champion, Driven and Special Divisions. JCOP had 2 competitors, Scott Drab & Jennifer, with his 2003 XKR, and Gary Kincel with his 1948 Mk IV. (The club would have had a 3rd competitor, Lenny Fiore, if it wasn't for a computer mix-up.) Scott received a second-place award for his efforts in class D-9A and Gary received a first-place award in class C-1B. The awards presentation and banquet was held at the Crowne Plaza Grand Hall, a structure similar to Pittsburgh's Grand Concourse restaurant.
The speaker was Brian Redman of Group 44 fame. Following Redman's speech, special gifts were presented by Cliff Burk to several people that helped in the Challenge Championship. JCOP's newsletter editor, Candy Williams, received an award for her work with the host contracts and event publicity. This was such a fine event that you may want to consider attending the 2009 Challenge Championship.