What is the Waumandee Time Trials?
It’s an annual competitive driving event limited to vintage cars, trucks, and motorcycles that takes place on a wooded, twisty, and hilly closed public road in the “Driftless Area” of western central Wisconsin, near the town of Waumandee, usually on the fourth weekend in September.
My car isn’t quite 30 years old. Can I still register?
We want to maintain a “vintage flavor” at the Waumandee Time Trials, but we do have some flexibility on the 30 year rule. New kit cars that are designed to look like vintage cars are allowed. Vehicles with vintage bodies but modern drivetrains are welcome. If a particular vehicle model was produced 30 years ago, and you have the same generation model but a more recent year, we will probably let you in. For example, the first generation (NA) Mazda MX-5 Miata was produced from 1989 to 1997. Since that generation started more than 30 years ago, we will allow any first gen (NA) Miata, but not second gen (NB) or newer Miatas yet. So if your Miata has pop-up headlights, you can run it!
What does the tech inspection check?
Vehicles must be in sound mechanical condition and will be required to pass a technical inspection for safety. Participating vehicles must use DOT approved tires (street or race) in good condition. Driver and passenger must wear working seatbelts (lap belts at least, shoulder belts strongly preferred). Everything loose must be removed from the vehicle. Numbers on both sides of the vehicle, and on the passenger side of the windshield. Battery bolted down (not bungeed) with the hot post covered. Brake pedal firm. Steering and suspension responsive and tight. Gas pedal springs back positively after being pressed and released.
What is the history of this event?
What is now known as the Waumandee Time Trials started as the Waumandee Hillclimb in 2012. Originally sponsored by the Minnesota Austin-Healey Club (MAHC), the Waumandee Hillclimb was the brainchild of Tom Hazen, a longtime member and former president of MAHC. From 2003 to 2012, Mr. Hazen successfully ran the annual “Healey Hillclimb at Afton Alps” at a ski resort in Minnesota near the Twin Cities. Unfortunately, a change in policy by the local town board ended the Afton event, but Mr. Hazen had already envisioned moving the hillclimb to a longer and more desirable course out in the “middle of nowhere” in the beautiful Driftless Area of western Wisconsin. The Waumandee Time Trials is now run under the auspices of Vintage Time Trials LLC, a company that Mr. Hazen formed to celebrate the joy of driving vintage cars.
How did you find that incredible road?
Most people don’t know that hidden in the rolling farmland of western central Wisconsin are some of the best driving roads in the United States. The “Driftless Area” was spared by the glaciers that flattened the rest of the upper Midwest. Drivers who know how to find them revel in these twisty, hilly, wooded (and usually empty) country roads that link fertile valleys of farm fields with windswept ridges 450 feet higher. The locals give the best stretches names like Stai Coulee, Rose Valley Dugway, Alligator Slide, and Pretzel Pass.