There’s more than one way to wind up in Victory Lane at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Concord, N.H.’s Jim Marhan took home arguably the biggest prize from the 2011 Vintage Celebration; a new wife.
For 12 years, Marhan made the quick trip up Route 106 from his Concord home to his fantasy escape in Loudon. A product of the 60s and 70s, he fell in love with old motorcycles. Vintage Weekend is the one chance he gets every year to relive his youth, turn some fast laps on his 1967 Yamaha YR-1, and enjoy the camaraderie that comes with a couple of days with like-minded enthusiasts.
Jim’s world changed – and improved - when he met Kathi. She quickly took to the racing world and enjoyed tagging along to Vintage Weekend to meet old friends and watch Jim race. The romance progressed and the two decided to get married. In Loudon. At the track.
Jim and Kathi hosted a “flash wedding”. Not that kind of flash. Think of flash mob. If you were at the track that day last September, you were a part of the ceremony. The nuptials were held in Victory Lane after the trophies for the day were handed out. The blushing bride arrived by rickshaw, driven by a racing friend. Attendees included 73-year old Frank Camalari, one of the oldest motorcycle racers in the circuit.
The two lived happily ever after, so far. Now attention is turning to the 2012 event. Jim’s YR-1, his lovely bride, and a one year anniversary. That’s a pretty good weekend.
When you see the happy couple, wish them a joyous anniversary. And enjoy the racing on both the oval and road course circuits.
The 22nd Annual Vintage Racing Celebration kicks off with two days of oval racing on Thursday, May 10 and Friday, May 11. The oval days will feature a wide variety of vehicles, some dating back many years. Categories include midget, sprint, champ, Indy, modified and stock cars that will certainly dazzle with a thrilling, high speed exhibition of vintage racing. Follow your favorites as they zoom around “The Magic Mile.”
On the weekend, the track will transform and be reconfigured into the 1.6-mile road course for the rest of the weekend. On May 12 and 13, several associations will invade the track for thrilling race action. Vintage racers from all over the world will test their skills against the winding course. And visitors will wonder at the speed and balance of the motorcycles, which include sidecar racers.