The scenery was fabulous today through the desert. We have a great group of people. Bisbee is an old mining town with ghosts in our hotel which was built in 1900. Tomorrow, there is a car show in the down town and some antique stores to browse. We are also getting a tour of some local caverns and probably go to Tombstone for lunch and try to avoid a gun fight.
We arrived at Terry Larsonís garage about 8. AM. The 10 C and d and XK SSí s were in process of being lined up so we could get some pictures of the entourage. We too k of about 9:15 to get gas and hit the road. Between 30 and 40 million dollars of ion headed down the road. The appreciation of these cars in the last couple of years is amazing, but who knows what they will be worth next year. We headed out of Mesa to the south east. Myself , Bob Bailey, Bob Alpert, and Adam Martin. Bob and I drove the C and D for the 1st leg in the morning. I just got the C back from RM , who did a fair amount of work on it. So far Ėvery pleased. The second leg had Bob Alpert and Adam driving. Bob was driving the C and it over heated. We put it on the trailer and carried it the last 10 miles to lunch. The wind was so strong we were afraid to open the hood on the road. After lunch we learned that it had probably over heated because we had a huge tail wind and not enough air was getting to the radiator. The car was fine in he after noon with Bob bailey and I driving the 1st leg again. We told Bob and Adam we thought there was aenough gas to get to Bisbee. Bob ran out of gas just outside of Tombstone in the D. Jim came along in the sweep truck with 5 gallons and off he went.
Guest Columnist: Adam Martin
Departure from Terry Larsonís home in Mesa, AZ. 10 Jaguar C&D Types primed the fuel pumps and pushed the starter buttons igniting the pulses of everyone involved. We are about to embark on the 11th annual C&D tour. I am here as a guest of my good friend, Jim Taylor. Jim has both his C&D Type on the rally and we are joined by Bob Bailey, from New York and Robert Alpert from Arizona. Each of Jimís cars are equipped with tonneaus over the passenger compartment so Robert and I have to drive support in Jimís Aston Martin DB9 ; tough duty, I know. If you donít know Jim, he is a true rallying enthusiasts, he has been all over the world. With Jimís rally experience we plan ahead on the first day to find the half-way point to lunch so we can make the car exchange. I knew that in 64.7 miles I would be stepping behind the wheel of one of Jaguars most famous automobiles. The rally is underway and itís a mad dash out of Terryís home and all attention is focused on the route book and getting out of Dodge!
The drive in the morning was phenomenal; the weather was sunny and 70+ degrees. Lots of suntan lotion and cool custom Jaguar Rally hats were all worn to keep the sun away.
It was time, Jim in the C-Type and Bob in the D-Type finally pull over onto the shoulder, my heart starts to beat a little faster, oh my goshÖits my turn. I clamor for my bag of driver goodies : Hagerty Crash Helmet, check, British Driving gloves, check, vintage racing goggles, check. Camera, check! I am ready! I pop out of the Aston and run up to the D-Type (Robert and I had previously discussed who gets to drive what first). I approach Jimís D-Type like a little boy waiting to sit on Santaís lap. This is the holy grail of Jaguar sports and I get to sit my amateur driving skills behind the wheel, have I died and gone to heaven? Bob gets me checked in with the car, I have my helmet, goggles, gloves all in place. The fuel pumps on, mirrors in place and bang, she fires to life with a touch of the starter buttonÖ.its time to go! I find first gear, give the thumbs up to the rest of the team and off we go. One, two, three and into top gear straight up to to 110 mph. There is nothing like clear and smooth Arizona roads - nothing like the pop-hole ridden Michigan roads I am used to. The D-type is agile and powerful . Earlier that morning, ex-factory driver Norman Dewis was telling me he hit 192 mph on the mulsanne straight in a D-type. I wasnít about to beat his record as it was the first 5 minutes I have been in this car . Even though the thought did cross my mind, my senses came over me and rationalized that I get to drive this car for the next 4 days and that its not worth a quick blast to 193.
My 72.4 miles of driving to our lunch stop quickly came to an end. I still had the big grin and I could barely take myself to turn the key off, I wanted to continue so badly for the rest of the day. Oh well, one must share and it was Jim and Bobís turn back in the car and for me to get in the Aston again.
I could go on and on about each day's events, Iíll save you the drama and go straight for the visual aids on the rest of the trip. For all of those C&D Type owners out there who could not make it this year, I highly recommend getting back on board for next years run!