This Just In
• Men’s magazine Complex recently compiled the list “The 50 Best Car Commercials of All Time.” Take a look at www.complex.com/rides and see if you don’t agree that the list has some big holes in it. Where’s Chevy’s “Like a Rock” campaign? Or Joe Isuzu?
• Ted Johnson, SCORE International’s longtime vice president for business affairs, recently passed away at the age of 92 from the effects of a stroke he had more than a year ago. “Ted was the financial administration backbone of SCORE International from the days Mickey Thompson founded the company in 1973 until the last few years when he stepped back from an active role in the company,” said Sal Fish, SCORE CEO and president. “He has been and will always be with us in spirit.”
• We were also saddened to learn of the passing of Todd Gartshore, cofounder and vice president of marketing for Baer Brakes. Gartshore was one of the true good guys in the aftermarket industry. Working with him on a brake story was always a pleasure; he was upbeat, helpful, and very insightful, not just about brakes but the entire automotive aftermarket. He will be missed.
• More SCORE news: About the time you read this, SCORE will have staged a new event, the Tecate SCORE San Felipe Challenge of Champions. The race, held September 9-11, replaces the Primm 300 race that was cancelled this year because of “insurmountable insurance issues,” said SCORE. The new race, open to Pro and Sportsman classes for cars and trucks, will run over the same course that was used for the MasterCraft Safety Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 in March.
• GM will start to retool its assembly plants next year in preparation for a redesign of its fullsize pickups. According to Automotive News, GM plans a complete remake of the trucks, changes extensive enough to require major plant retooling that could last into 2013. Industry watchers believe the new trucks will begin production in 2013 as ’14 models.
• SEMA reports that a House Natural Resources Subcommittee recently held the hearing “Opportunities for Outdoor Recreation on Public Lands.” The main topics of discussion were protecting recreational access to federal lands and recognizing the economic benefits derived from such activities. Witnesses included representatives from the BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC), National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council, Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition, and other OHV organizations. The hearing included testimony in support of multiuse federal lands and responsible OHV recreation. Don Amador, Western representative for the BRC, spoke on the need to reopen the Clear Creek Management Area (CCMA) in California. Currently closed due to an “emergency closure” in 2008, the CCMA contains more than 75,000 acres of land containing off-road trails. Amador testified that the decision was based on inaccurate data and false assumptions and that the land should be designated as a National Recreation Area with prescribed OHV uses.
• SEMA also tells us the U.S. Department of the Interior has withdrawn its controversial “wild lands” policy, which directed lands with potential wilderness qualities to be managed as wilderness. SEMA joined with a number of other organizations to oppose the program, implemented last December by the BLM, since it usurps the exclusive authority of Congress to designate “wilderness.” (We all know the issue there: No motorized activities are allowed on “wilderness” lands.) Under the wild lands program, the BLM was directed to review its inventory in search of more wild lands. Program opponents noted that it did not take into account input from local communities and elected officials on how the lands should be managed, such as permitting multiple uses that provide jobs and economic benefits.
• The BLM has also closed 37 miles of roads and trails in southwest Idaho to protect the Packard’s milkvetch. Last November the plant was listed as a candidate for protection under the Endangered Species Act. The BLM closure around Willow Creek will last at least two years as the issue is reviewed.
• A federal judge has rejected Utah’s lawsuit claiming state rights to a 101⁄2-mile road in Canyonlands National Park. The National Park Service closed the road in 1998, blocking motorized access to Angel Arch. The state of Utah and San Juan County had argued that the dried-up Salt Creek Canyon riverbed had a history of continuous use by vehicles, homesteaders, and cattle herders, which provided a right of way to the national park. Widely considered the most spectacular arch in the park, Angel Arch can now be reached only by a 12-mile hike.