Viper Nation

Supercar Dodge Viper site with pictures, technical info, experiential stories with a few other winter action extreme stories posted.

RTTTTed On November - 21 - 2010

Thunder Throughout Valley of the Sun

by Ted Hlokoff

Dodge Dodge Vipers stormed the back roads of the Okanagan Valley June 20th, 2008 weekend all the way to Sun Valley Speedway, where the day was spent dodging Hemi Orange traffic cones.  Sometimes the Vipers won, and occasionally the cones.  From 450hp to 900hp  outputs, from stock to heavily modified, Vipers left their wide footprints all over the Vernon speedway and most of the Okanagan Valley.

Friday night the Grand Kelowna Resort was treated to 20 Vipers of various Generations, sparkle and decibel levels as the VCA met from all parts of Alberta, BC and Washington state.   Old friendships were renewed in the Hotel’s Vine Lounge that evening. 

8am Saturday was the time the entrance way of the Grand Kelowna filled with Vipers.  My Roe supercharged (720rwhp without Nitrous) and 3 other Paxton supercharged Vipers were also squeezed into the parking lot.  Besides my Sapphire GTS, I saw at least one other Nitrous equipped Gen 2.  Similar to a flower garden the gateway didn’t take long to fill with colorful, sparkling Dodge Halo cars.  Although some still retained stock reasonable exhaust, most were equipped with Thunderous Corsa sound equipment!  Promptly at 8:30am 16 of the attending machines turned left and started cruising the boulevards of Kelowna, BC.  For any long trip the first stop is the Premium Gas Station, of course.  Wanting to get the full scope of the beautiful Okanagan Valley we cruised the back roads and high 2 laners for the wonderful look at lakes and scenery.  Often the right road shoulder was non-existent or a few hundred feet below our asphalt surface, the view is much clearer when there’s nothing in the way of the lake below. 

Following Craig Sanford (vca president and host) all those Vipers thundered over “hill and dale”, around all the serpentine “highways and byways”, letting the entire countryside know that our Vipers were in town.  I drove my Sapphire/Silver GTS near the rear of the ‘parade’ with my wife, Deana taking pictures for most of the drive. 


Before the constabulary could become concerned we were lined up in the driveway of Sun Valley Speedway outside of Vernon.  After signing waivers we were directed to our pit areas and emptied all loose objects from our cars.  We received our safety instructions and walked the course through the cones.  After a trial drive through the course we donned our helmets and lined up for our first runs of the Autocross.

Viki ( of Valley Traffic Control Co.) brought the cones used to set up the Autocross for us and volunteered her efforts for our event, thank you.  Craig took her for a ride in his ‘03 SRT10 around the course.  I heard screaming and looked to see them pull into the stop box.  Craig said that she screamed all the way throughout the ride, now there’s a woman that knows how to enjoy herself!  Colleen Willick took the seat of their Black and Silver Paxton supercharged ’99 GTS first and yelled to Gordon Roberts, our start timer, “Be gentle, I’m a virgin.”  Her husband Ron did the next run.  Returning from my run Deana mentioned that, “Your car is the loudest here.”  “Thanks Dear,” I replied with a chuckle.  She was trying to videotape with a new camera.  It turns out that smooth is “where it’s at”, but I still managed a decent time while fishtailing into second gear every straight.  I didn’t win, of course, but I’m sure I had waaay more fun than anyone else. 


I strapped Michael Cook (9) and his Dad, Pat Cook, into the passenger seatbelt for rides during my third and fourth run and they agree that my way is the best.  Gordon Roberts ran his ’03 Black Gen 3 to the best VCA time at 47.40 sec., Greg Weflen got second place in his Blue/white 97 GTS with an average runtime of 47.41.  Daryl Ketter of Kamloops took the third place trophy with his Yellow/Black "06 SRT.  Craig Sandford’s son, Dexter, not only bested all of the VCA in his Dad’s ’03 Viper, but also managed to set a record with 46.66.  Not owning his own Viper… yet, he was disqualified because of his non-membership.  His time bested his Dad’s by 1.21 secs!  Guess who taught Dexter everything he knows?  My best time was a measley 48.41, without Nitrous, of course.  No scratches, dents or impacts happened, which assured that everyone had a great time.  Ron Willick did blow a power steering hose, a minor irritation.

Greg Weflen’s paint was flawless and I asked him how his paint could be so perfect.  After removing his vinyl front Mopar bra he showed me his blue masking taped wheel-wells.  He said to use ‘Painter’s tape” so that it comes off easily.  I’ll testify that it works!   After enjoying our lunch, our last runs were completed and we headed off on our own with instructions to meet at the Grand lobby at 6:45pm for dinner reservations at Earl’s restaurant.  Since many of us had our wives, that entailed shopping at some of the malls in Vernon.   After an excellent meal many of us met in the Grand outdoor patio lounge and caught up to date with old friends and met new ones.

Sunday was a late (10am) meeting in the Grand Hotel’s gateway to gather for another back-road cruise through the Valley.  More beautiful scenery was enjoyed by the 15 Vipers participating this time.  Through many residential areas we ‘rumbled’ more than thundered this morning.  Evelyn and Udo Nells led the cruise and we stopped at the Kal Lake lookout for a few minutes.  Then, on to the Historic Okeefe Ranch.  We became a Tourist Attraction ourselves once we parked on the grounds along the highway fence.  Fred and Elouise Kappler made certain that no one got lost in their Paxton equipped ’99 Black/Silver GTS by playing rear “gatekeeper” throughout the weekend drives.  Don and Chris Campbell posed beside their new ’08 Black coupe at the Ranch. 

We ate lunch at the Okeefe restaurant where I managed a “Logger’s Cheeseburger” that contained a whooping 12 oz. of beef.  Many of the group enjoyed the antique log ranch house, school house, museum, Blacksmith shop, General store as well as the wine tasting in the Gift shop.  The wine was so tasty that some members headed off to Summerland for a private afternoon wine tasting session at another winery.   Okanagan Valley is famous for its premier Wines.

5:45pm was meeting time back in the Grand lobby for the 4 min. walk to the “Boardroom” 83’ Houseboat Dinner cruise.  Out on the lake enjoying cocktails we were treated to an ‘up-close’ look at Kelowna’s new $50,000,000 bridge.  A speedboat came roaring at us and upon closing with us, it seemed that half of their crew suddenly had clothing issues and proved their feminine gender.  After circling our ship they headed off into the distance, to applause.  They reversed and circled our ship again, this time it was the other half of the crew that seemed to develop clothing problems and their shorts were stuck to their knees.  We were mooned!

Gord Roberts and I waited until the line up at the buffet was all seated, then went to help ourselves.  My second piece of chicken jumped out of the tongs and returned to the serving bowl splashing me and putting some color to Gord’s grey slacks.  “Sorry Gord, “I said, “they must have used Virgin olive oil to cook the damn things.”  The ship’s serving lady, seeing my distress offered some soda water to help me clean up.  I accompanied her to the kitchen where she supplied me with a cloth and soda water.  “I’d help,” she offered and pointing at my crotch she said, “but you’re attached and I don’t go there.”  After my clean up, I rejoined the ‘party’.  “Gord, the Ship’s lady offered to help me clean up, but mentioned that I was married.  Maybe she’d help a poor single guy like you … with the rubbing I mean,” is what I told Gordon.  She was very helpful to Gord and neither of us got stained. 

Getting off the ship many of the group posed with Ogopogo, the legendary Monster of the Lake statue. 


The entire weekend was a blast.  While we cruised the back-roads people stopped and waved our entire entourage through intersections.  Even out of our Vipers people treated us like Kings and Queens.  There’s more to a Club than cars, the main feature of the club is the people.  I managed to add another 2,148 miles to my odometer this weekend, putting my total to 34,488miles.



Categories: Dodge Viper Stories

2 Responses so far.

  1. My niece was laughing when reading this line on your blog …… it makes me to feel more intelligent after understanding it.

  2. MICKEY says:

    Very well done and nice to see

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