The week of August 23rd-28, 2016 was definitely a milestone in the long standing achievement of the BMW automotive brand. All of the technological innovations, patented designs and philanthropic contributions BMW GROUP Ag. has provided to the world has definitely made it a better place. They have brought people together from all walks of life and backgrounds for a common cause, the love of beautifully designed vehicles and the passion for how they Perform!
I was invited by a friend a week prior to attend, and without hotel reservations the day before my last-minute, spur-of-the-moment trip, ventured out to Monterrey's historic Laguna Seca Raceway for a one-in-a-lifetime experience! Having visited Monterey several times in the past, for golf at Pebble Beach Resort and Bayonet Black Horse Golf Course, I distinctly remember hearing the sound of the race cars from miles away at Laguna Seca. Having never been before, I couldn't wait to see what the historic track looked like.. and when I arrived, I was in awe.
While in the San Fransisco Bay Area I realized last-minute that I registered with the BMW CCA a tour of the DINAN Engineering factory. This is a company I have lots of respect for, and having had owned multiple DINAN cars (Mini Cooper and BMW), I would not miss this opportunity for anything! A foggy, early morning drive across the Bay Bridge in traffic that makes Los Angeles seem normal, led me to a city surrounded by pastures of golden grass and farms. The suburb DINAN has called home was like an oasis, perfect for the introversion of the engineering brilliance which paradoxically created such an extroverted and passionate company. When I pulled into the parking lot I had butterflies. For such a grand company in my mind, I had no idea what I was in store for. I expected something on par to visiting the grand wizard of OZ, however upon entering I then realized how humble this company truly was. I was shocked how neat, simple and clean the facility was and how organized all the products and tuning bays were.
The Dinan cars on exhibit made me want another. BMWs are truly an addictive drug, one that highway patrol loves to prey on to support their revenues. So, in a way, Dinan is not only putting smiles on the faces of the drivers of their tuned cars, but also on the CHP and families being fed by the revenues created by those drivers' speeding violations (in a weird twisted way... :)
BMW CCA provided catered lunch, drinks and social hour for the several tour groups that continued to pile into the shop during the day. I want to use this opportunity to thank both DINAN for opening their doors to the BMW CCA, and for for the BMW CCA for doing such a great job organizing the event. And I believe, despite the police not being happy with the speed these cars are traveling, they drive away with a respect for the unbridled engineering that went into making the car perform that way.
A 6 hour drive home, through farmland, central coast vineyards, the Dutch enclave of Solvang and the beach cities of Santa Barbara and Los Angeles left a lasting impression on me and how fortunate I have been to be so passionately involved in such an amazing industry.
Hope this blog post was enjoyable, stay tuned for more!