Fiero 35th – Don’t leave the kids at home.

Join us at the 35th Anniversary Fiero Car Show for fun family activities!!

First, the 35th Anniversary Fiero Cruise – Friday, August 10th, 2018 to Pontiac, Illinois. Family activities in Pontiac include:
• A mural scavenger hunt.
• Decorated art cars, located all around the square, for kids to sit in and pretend to “drive”.
• Two beautiful local parks:
o Along the Vermillion River with a swinging bridge and a playground that is walking distance from downtown.
o Chautauqua Park boasts two historic swinging bridges, a playground, and a disk golf course. Chautauqua Park is located outside of downtown Pontiac but is walkable.

On Saturday, August 11th, 2018 bring your kids to the 35th Anniversary Fiero Kid’s Zone. Fiero Kid Zone activities are free and open from 10am – 3pm in the Convention Center.

Fiero Kid’s Zone activities include:
• Fiero Kid’s Zone coloring books with pictures and games.
• Decorate small cardboard Fiero cut-outs that kids can color and keep.
• Children and adults, have your picture taken with the LIFE SIZE FIERO CAR cut-out.
• Enjoy coloring with chalk on a Fiero car hood.
• Be part of the voting for Kid’s Choice – Favorite Fiero Car and Kid’s Choice Favorite Fiero Go-Cart.

Join us Saturday evening from 6pm – 8pm in the Convention Center hallway, for Hot Wheels Car Races! One free Hot Wheels car will be given to each child who participates.

To enjoy the fun activities, volunteer staff will be available to assist the children. In order to make the day enjoyable, children must be supervised by a parent while participating in the Fiero Kid’s Zone activities.

Fiero 35th – Online Registration Extended!

Due to the extreme demand this week (over 30 registrations in the past few days) we have decided to extend Pre-Registration until July 29th! Don’t miss out joining a few hundred of your fellow Fiero owners and admirers.

A large team of volunteers have been busy planning a great event for you to enjoy!

Wednesday Night – August 8, 2018
At 5:00pm, the show committee looks forward to gathering early-bird attendees for a reception in the hotel lobby. Each evening, the Embassy Suites hosts a complimentary reception featuring light snacks and beverages for hotel guests in the hotel’s atrium. Those not staying at the hotel are also welcome to participate and purchase beverages from the hotel bar. This early-bird reception on Wednesday will be the “official” beginning of our events.

Thursday – August 10, 2018
For those arriving on Thursday, Registration, Classification and Merchandise Sales will be up and running! Arriving on Thursday will give you time to settle in and prepare for a scenic dinner cruise. We will depart from our host hotel at 4:00pm to drive along the lovely Grand View Drive that runs the bluff area that borders the Illinois River to take in the scenic sites and provide several photo opportunities for owners to capture their Fieros against a beautiful backdrop.
The cruise will take us about 30 miles on a 30-45 minute drive to “The 50s Diner” in Metro Center (Peoria) where we will meet up with the friendly Central Illinois Cruisers (a local car club) for a joint cruise night. We will have a special section of the parking lot specifically reserved for our Fieros; The 50s Diner is looking forward to providing us with a great meal! What better way to kick off your first full day of celebrating the 35th Anniversary of the Pontiac Fiero than with food, fun and Fieros?
Upon returning from the cruise, festivities will shift to the show field parking lot where we anticipate a reprisal of the famous “Circle of Shame” being held in conjunction with an opportunity to see what your Fiero weighs thanks to Schwa MotorSports (www.schwamotorsports.com). The weigh-ins will take place at the west end of show field parking lot from 9:00pm – 11:00pm (and 8:00pm – 10:00pm on Friday, August 10, 2018).

Friday – August 10, 2018
Our Classification and Registration volunteers expect to have a full day on Friday and we strongly recommend you take the time to grab your special 35th Anniversary related merchandise on Friday too at the Merchandise Sales table! Some items will be limited in quantity at the actual show; any remaining items will be available for post-show shipping (for an additional fee).
Our last article gave an extensive review of the “Fieros on Route 66” event. If you missed it, you need to know that this event will give you the opportunity to drive your Fiero on historic Route 66 and experience the Pontiac-Oakland Museum in Pontiac, IL. The Museum will be giving special tours to Fiero owners and the town is excited to host our contingent of Fiero owners.
Groups will be able to return from Pontiac, IL at their own leisure. If you make it back by 5:00pm, you can take part in the Embassy Suites complimentary evening reception before heading out to dinner with Fiero friends or just stay at the hotel for a Fiero tailgate party with food trucks in the show field parking lot. At 8:00pm, the Midwest Fiero Clubs will host a judging school that will prepare participating judges for the points judged classes on show day. All 35th Anniversary event participants are welcome to join in and listen to the judging school seminar.
From 10:30pm – 11:30pm it’s time for “Friday Night Lights”, a one-hour lighting contest sponsored by Black Top Racing which will be held out in the show field parking lot.

Saturday – August 11, 2018
Saturday is the BIG day of the event – one that is filled with the car show, Kid’s Zone activities and an evening of special guest speakers. If you’re bringing your young Fiero enthusiasts to the car show, we will have a special Kid’s Zone where you can work with your kids and help them create special Fiero-related arts and crafts. All kids will also have the opportunity to judge the Fiero Go-Kart class, as well as select their own Fiero favorites on the show field.

Following the culmination of the car show (“official” show hours are from 10:00am – 3:00pm), join in for the evening’s complimentary reception and an evening meal during the tailgate party out in the show field parking lot; several food trucks are planned to be on site. Following dinner, participants are invited to Poncho Perfection Magazine’s Hall of Fieros at 7:00pm to hear an outstanding lineup of guest speakers.

So register now at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-fiero-35th-anniversary-celebration-presented-by-black-top-racing-registration-38307061452

Classic Fiero Focus – Barteyemer’s Bits – Fiero Paces the Indy 500

Editors Note: This article originally appeared in the May/June 2008 issue of Fiero Focus Magazine published by Northern Illinois Fiero Enthusiasts

With spring in the air and Memorial Day around the corner, most of us car people turn our attention to Indianapolis. It was just yesterday 24 years ago that our beloved Fiero paced the big race on May 27, 1984. Customers at the dealerships lined up to get their first look at the new Indy Fiero during the first week of April. Visitors to the Pontiac showrooms had the opportunity to enter a raffle to win a gas powered Indy Fiero Go-Kart at the top selling Pontiac dealerships.

In a letter dated May 4, 1982, just one day after the “P” car was approved for production, Bill Hoglund sent a reply to Indianapolis Motor Speedway accepting the invitation to pace the 1984 Indy 500. At that time, John Calles was awarded the project to develop and build the Super Duty components required for pace car duties. Working directly with John Schinella in styling, John was given the resources to build three special cars to pace the race.

In a letter dated January 4, 1983, a meeting was called on January 17, 1983 to make the final decisions regarding the three track cars and the Indy replicas. At this meeting, several key program decisions were discussed and made. The number one concern was public consumer identity. Many of the exterior design proposals for the three track cars did not resemble a production Fiero. The Aero body, wing, and snorkel were a toned down version of what the styling department really wanted to do with the Indy Fiero. One of the major points was that the Indy body that was actually produced could be used on future Fiero models without any major tooling or development costs. This decision presented a major task for the engineers to produce the new body panels with the correct aerodynamic characteristics in such short notice. Another point discussed was that all of the Super Duty components were to be marketed to the general public under the Performance Plus Parts program. Intentions were to allow the public to build their own replica of the track car from parts available at the dealership. Most of the mechanical parts were available to the public short of the wheel disks, electric power brakes, and strobe lights. From this meeting on, the three Indy Fieros that were prepared for pacing duties remained unchanged in design and mechanical specifications.

During the months of July and August 1983, the pilot build replica was built in the styling studio. This is the car that sat in the front of the Fiero Plant and currently resides at the Gilmore Auto Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The final approval decision to build the replicas was made as soon as the pilot car was finished leaving the car unchanged from the proposal. The replica count was determined at 2000 units based on marketing estimates and production costs.

The first 15 Indy Fieros were built on January 25, 1984. These first 15 went to the executives at Pontiac and were used for quality assurance and marketing purposes. As a matter of fact, replica #2 ended up as a prototype car that is currently in stock at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. The remaining replicas were built starting February 21, 1984. The production goal was to build three Indy Fieros per hour. Supplier delays proved this schedule to be hard to keep. At the close of February, only 86 cars were ready for shipment. At the close of the second week of March, 488 Indy Fieros were completed. Specifically selected dealers were to receive the Indy Fieros for display only until all 2000 replicas were built. By the fourth week of March, 658 replicas were built, but production had to be ceased in order for the supplier of the wings to catch up on supply. Finally on May 11, 1984, the last Indy Fiero replica was produced. NIFE member, Mike Maver, currently owns this car.

To witness the Fiero in action at Indy, Pontiac employees took 9 buses to see the time trials and 23 buses on race day. The race day bus trip participants received Indy Fiero rain ponchos, bleacher seat cushions, hat, T-shirt, and wristwatch as part of the $30 dollar package including the bus fare. And finally, the very first Indy Fiero replica was raffled off at the 2nd Annual Fiero Family Picnic on August 19, 1984. Guests of the picnic were given items such as Indy Fiero yo-yos, Frisbees, t-shirts and hats. The destiny of the very first replica is unknown at this time. The contents of this writing is an accumulation of information taken from papers acquired from Hulki Aldikacti, interviews with the employees that made the Indy Fiero happen and Fiero Plant “Fiero Facts Newsletter” sent to Fiero Plant managers and team leaders.

editors note: If you are looking for Fred on Memorial Day Weekend, you will find him in the stands at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Photo courtesy of Fred Bartemeyer, Jr

Note to Self: You Are Busy August 9-12, 2018!

By Jennifer Goss, Jim Hallman & Fred Bartemeyer, Jr, MWFC Members

Plans and arrangements for the 35th Anniversary of the Introduction of the Pontiac Fiero are currently underway. The goal of the event organizers is to attract as many Pontiac Fiero owners as possible to bring themselves, and hopefully their Fiero(s), to East Peoria, IL to take part in the celebration. The event will take place August 9-12, 2018 and will include a very wide range of activities such as parking lot tailgate parties and weigh-ins to a cruise from East Peoria, IL to Pontiac, IL along Route 66 called “Fieros on Route 66”. The highly anticipated Fiero car show will take place on Saturday, August 11, 2018. These are only some of the events already planned. Be sure to mark your calendars and make your reservations today. You can register and learn more about the event by visiting www.Fiero35th.com. Black Top Racing (www.blacktop.racing) is the event’s Sponsor.

A Historical Summary of the Anniversary Events

In 2003, the Michigan Fiero Club and Classic Fiero Owners Group International (CFOG-i) hosted the 20th Anniversary Event in Pontiac, MI. This first event was the largest gathering of Pontiac Fieros to ever come together in the history of Fiero shows with an attendance of over 600 Fieros. This 20th Anniversary Event also exclusively featured the nine prototype Fieros brought to the show by the GM Heritage Collection. This was the first time that all of the remaining GM Fieros were shown at the same venue including the first public showing of the illusive 1990 Fiero GT concept car. The event also included a track day at Waterford Race Course and drag racing at Milan Dragway. To finish off the event, guest speakers Hulki Aldikacti (commonly known as the father of the Fiero), Don Parkinson and John Callies gave presentations on their involvement with the production of the Fiero.

In 2008, the Michigan Fiero Club hosted the 25th Anniversary Event. This edition was a near repeat/mirror image of the 20th Anniversary Event in the way the show was organized. The Fiero show itself featured nearly 400 Fieros. Once again, the nine GM prototype Fieros made their appearance. Little did we know that this was the last time that all nine cars would be shown together as GM Heritage Collection assets. As you may recall, in 2009 five of them would go on the auction block to be sold. An exclusive tour of the GM Heritage Center also took place the day before the show and allowed Fiero owners to see a very special collection of GM prototypes and unreleased vehicles that are often unavailable for viewing to the general public. The 25th Anniversary Event included several social events that allowed Fiero owners to interact on the streets of Pontiac, MI. The highlight of the event was the large culmination of guest speakers present at the awards banquet. Special guests included Hulki Aldikacti, John Callies, Alex Mair, Jon Albert and Gary Witzenburg.

In 2013, the Midwest Fiero Clubs hosted the 30th Anniversary Event. This event featured a change of venue to Indianapolis, IN. Over 260 Fieros turned out to celebrate the 30 years since the introduction of the Fiero and many enthusiasts, both with and without their cars, attended to participate in the festivities. John Callies made his third anniversary event trip and regalled the crowd with additional stories of his time on the Fiero project, made even more special by his role in the Indy Pace Car program and engineering. In fact, over 165 Fieros took the opportunity during the anniversary weekend to take two laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway track and get their pictures taken on the track; it was a sight to see!

A Historical Summary of the Midwest Fiero Clubs

So, just who is this group called the Midwest Fiero Clubs (MWFC) who is hosting the 35th Anniversary Event? In 2004, the MWFC was formed as a result of many of the club representatives from the active Fiero clubs in the upper Midwest assembling at a meeting in the Chicago area. The meeting agenda centered mainly around what the Fiero clubs could do to combine efforts to promote the Fiero community as a whole and provide activities that would attract and enhance the experience that Fiero owners would participate in at the various club events throughout the Midwest. Discussion also involved future plans of expanding the concept of each club helping other clubs in other regions of the country by supporting their events outside of the general Midwest area. Another point discussed was if there was a way that we could revive the old structure of the former defunct national club and possibly sponsor national events that would attract Fiero owners from abroad. Each year the Midwest Fiero Clubs has created a promotional campaign to enhance the events and shows of the participating clubs.

As many in the Fiero community may already be aware, on April 30, 2016, the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) graciously granted the Midwest Fiero Clubs (MWFC) a charter to make their association of clubs an official Non-Geographical Region of this prestigious international organization. As a result, the Pontiac Fiero nameplate is now recognized in this international organization that has 60,000 plus members, 400 Regions and Chapters in all 50 states, and more than 50 countries. The AACA’s purpose is the perpetuation of the pioneering days of automobiling by furthering the interest in and preservation of antique automobiles and the promotion of sportsmanship and good fellowship among all AACA members.

As a result of this charter, MWFC transitioned to a more formal club structure with operating bylaws and an oath to the AACA to conduct itself within the expectations of the national policies and procedures; however, the current purpose of the MWFC remains the same as it has since 2004: A dedicated group of enthusiasts whose passion is to promote and preserve the Pontiac Fiero and the Fiero community.

The MWFC goal is to promote the clubs, events, people, history and preservation relating to the Pontiac Fiero. After becoming an AACA Region, MWFC has continued to operate as its own separate entity within the Fiero community and offers the same support as it has done for the past 12 years. As a result of their regional status, the MWFC is now exposed to the vast resources of the entire automobile hobby. Since the youngest Fiero is now 30 years old, our cars have crossed over into what is recognized as a collector car instead of just normal daily transportation.

The benefits of this venture are numerous. They range from public exposure of MWFC activities with the Pontiac Fiero and the Fiero Community within a larger view of the collector car hobby to liability protections for officers and members. The Region has appointed the following officers: President, Fred Bartemeyer (IA); Vice President, Kevin Lindeman (MN); Secretary, Ken Nagel (IL); Treasurer, John Holmes (IA); Social Media Director, Jason Fawley; Webmaster, Jeff Jones. A specific set of MWFC bylaws were drawn up and a board of directors were also elected to include: Jim Hallman (IL), Sadie Goad Kaminski (WI) and Lisa Thuerauf (IA).

We also strongly encourage every MAFOA & NEFA member to consider a family membership to the AACA. A family membership is only $40 and gets you many benefits including a free bi-monthly magazine filled with content about the art of collecting, a free monthly online magazine – “Speedster”, access to national car meets/tours and more! Visit www.aaca.org for more information.

The MWFC currently maintains a website at (http://midwestfieroclubs.com/) and can be found on Facebook under “Midwest Fiero Clubs”. Please be sure to like this page and be an active contributor when you can.
111

A Day at the Museum

During our 35th Anniversary Show planning meeting in October at the Pontiac Oakland Museum in Pontiac IL, Museum Director Tim Dye mentioned that much Fiero materials had been donated but that he has not had the chance to go through and organize it. Midwest Fiero Clubs President and Historian Fred Bartemeyer Jr. offered to help. So this past Friday club members from Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa helped Tim sort through many of the documents donated to the museum library.

The museum is home to both the museum’s library, as well as the Pontiac Oakland Club International’s library. So much care was taken to make sure materials from the various source were not mixed. There was many interesting items discovered. National and local Fiero club publications going back to the early 90’s, internal GM publications, lots of Press Kits for the various Fiero launches, and many brochures from aftermarket performance part and kit car manufacturers.

We also came across some very interesting slides, including the prototype for the 86 1/2 fastback and a slide showing the one blue 85 GT made. Much of the donations had come from enthusiasts that donated their personal collections or from clubs that had disbanded. The most interesting documents though were from former GM executives that included many internal communications regarding the Fiero program. These included letters between Pontiac and AutoFab, the company that did much of the work on GM prototype cars in the 80’s. There are also some interesting proposals that were made to keep the Fiero program going.

Once we started going through this treasure trove of documents I think it may have turned into a night at the museum if we could have stayed. Needless to say we will be going back with a scanner to copy many of the documents. It was great to be able to help the museum organize its important collection of Fiero documents, and hopefully will help any researchers in the future.

Look for information from this visit to be included in future Fiero Focus magazine articles, in updates to NIFE’s Fiero Enthusiast Guide, in articles on this website, and in POCI’s Smoke Signals Magazine (edited by Museum Director Tim Dye).

111

Fiero 35th Anniversary Show coming in 2018

35th

The Fiero 35th Anniversary Show will be held in East Peoria IL August 8-12th 2018.

The host hotel for the weekend is the Embassy Suites Hotel.  It features a large indoor exhibition space,  great parking lot for the show field,  an indoor pool, hot breakfast buffet,  and free happy hour daily.    Its conveniently located near many eating and drinking establishments.

Registration will open in August of 2017,  if you would like a reminder when registration is open,  submit your email address in the form on the upper right of this page.

Looking forward to seeing everyone at the Show!!!

-MWFC

 

 

 

Tom’s Corner – Taming Road America!

tomscorner

Welcome to Road America in Elkhart Lake Wisconsin where I will take you through this 4.0-mile road racing course in a 1965 vintage 700 hp Corvette! I have driven this track many times over the years in different race cars and still to this day learn something new on the racing surface. All the information in this article is for dry track conditions only. If the track is wet, all bets are off! Imagine that you are driving this car and not me. You will be going faster on the straights but maybe a little slower in the corners. If all goes well, we should be able to do a complete circuit in this race car at 2 minutes 40 seconds!

When our session starts, we will depart the ‘false grid’ and into the hot pit lane and from there onto the race track. As you are going through the hit pit lane to the race track, hopefully you will notice a STOP and GO light on the fence at the end of the hot pit lane. If the light is RED…STOP! ~ If the light is GREEN, Go, BUT…please stay to the right until you are past the apex of turn one. Now do a parade lap around the race course and after turn 14, coming up the hill to the starter please stay on the left and let cars that may pass you pass on your right. You should be approaching 170 mph at this point and from turn 14 to turn one, you have covered 4405 feet. I would suggest going to the brake pedal at the #4 brake marker. Turn #1 is a right hander approaching downhill and is faster that it initially appears and many race drivers have ‘lost it’ there and gone into the gravel pit. Leaving turn #1 and going downhill on the left, and passing the flag station on your right, you will be approaching turn #3. This is 1561 feet from turn #1. Come down to this turn on the left side as you prepare for the right hand corner entrance and set up your apex accordingly. It should be a ‘late apex’ well past the middle of the bump strip on your right. This will lead you to the second fastest part of the track Coming out of turn #3, keep to the right of this slowly descending 3888 feet leading down to turn #5. You are going about 186 mph through this section. Watch for your brake markers here. This is the sharpest left hand turn on the race track. You should ‘late apex’ this turn as you head up to turn #6, which is a blind off camber left turn. Stay to the right side of the track when coming up the hill here. This section is 960 feet in length and you will use second and third gears to get to turn #6. Turn #7 is 788 feet going downhill with a slight kink to a section called ‘hurry downs’. Elevation change and 1322 feet to turn #8, you must stay to the right and very hard on the brakes in this 90 degree turn. You will be going about 90 mph approaching this turn.

The infamous ‘Carousel’ is 3383 feet in a slightly increasing radius and you will pick up speed considerably here as you approach ‘the ‘Kink’. Do not take ‘the Kink’ flat out! It has caused many crashes by driver who over-drive this portion of the track. From ‘the Kink’ to turn #12 is 2736 feet long and you will approach ‘Canada Corner’ at a very high rate of speed, about 190 mph! Watch your braking points here as you will need to down shift to first or second to get through this corner. Again, stay to the right side of the track and apex slightly sooner to get through properly. From turn #12 to turn #13, its uphill for 1140 feet and stay to the left. This section is called ‘Thunder Valley’. At corner #13 start your line to the right side as you approach turn #14 which is 1009 Feet. From here, you will start going back up hill to the start-finish line which is 1380 feet and wide open on the throttle! There are many elevation changes to this race course and that is what makes a favorite of race drivers. There are of course signs indicating braking points and rumble strips at the inside or outside of the apex’s and as you learn the course as I have, each time you drive here it will be a very memorable experience. To be able to tour this track at 2 minutes 40 seconds in my cousin’s vintage Corvette is just one of the highlights in all of my driving life.

Just think…172 mph…700 hp…arm restraints…ear plugs…safety harnesses… driving suit… helmet… roll bars…racing fuel…loud…hot and fast!!! This is what it’s all about!

There are many opportunities throughout the year to attend driving events at Road America,  for more information check out http://www.roadamerica.com/

I drove this Corvette road race car to 172 mph in 2005... Very loud,hot and fast !

I drove this Corvette road race car to 172 mph in 2005… Very loud,hot and fast !

 

Midwest Fiero Clubs now a Region of the AACA

To the Midwest Fiero Clubs member-clubs and wider Fiero community:

I am pleased to announce that on Saturday, April 30th, 2016, the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) graciously granted the Midwest Fiero Clubs (MWFC) a charter to make our association of clubs an official Non-Geographical Region of this prestigious international organization. Our Region application, club bylaws, and introduction background letter were submitted to the AACA national board of directors for discussion in Charlotte, NC on April 29th, 2016 in preparation for their vote. The Pontiac Fiero nameplate is now recognized in this international organization that has 60,000 plus members, 400 Regions and Chapters in all 50 states, and more than 50 countries. The AACA’s purpose is the perpetuation of the pioneering days of automobiling by furthering the interest in and preservation of antique automobiles and the promotion of sportsmanship and good fellowship among all AACA members.

While the MWFC now has a formal club structure with operating bylaws and an oath to the AACA to conduct ourselves within the expectations of the national policies and procedures, the current purpose of the MWFC will remain the same as it has since 2004 which is being: A dedicated group of enthusiasts whose passion is to promote and preserve the Pontiac Fiero and the Fiero community.

The MWFC goal is to promote the clubs, events, people, and Pontiac Fieros of the Fiero community. While becoming an AACA Region, the MWFC will continue to operate as its own separate entity within the Fiero community and offering the same support as we have done for the past 12 years. With the acceptance of our application as a region, the MWFC is now exposed to the vast resources of the entire automobile hobby. Since the youngest Fiero is 27 years old, our cars have crossed over into what is recognized as a collector car instead of just normal daily transportation.

A few minor changes will be made to the MWFC logo to reflect our new affiliation with the AACA. The benefits of this venture are numerous. They range from public exposure of our activity with the Pontiac Fiero and the Fiero community to liability protections for our officers and members. Our new Region has appointed the following officers: President, Fred Bartemeyer; Vice President, Kevin Lindeman; Secretary, Ken Nagel; Treasurer, John Holmes.

A specific set of MWFC bylaws will need to be drawn up and a board of directors will need to be elected at our next meeting, tentatively scheduled for October 2016. I encourage all Fiero clubs and interested Fiero enthusiasts to join in support of our new unique opportunity to continue in our interest of preserving the Pontiac Fiero and its history. The MWFC currently maintains a website at: http://midwestfieroclubs.com/ and can be found on Facebook under Midwest Fiero Clubs. The AACA main website can be found at www.aaca.org

Fred Bartemeyer
President, Midwest Fiero Clubs

AACA_black_white