- Day two of The Drivers Project II consisted of a 195-mile trek from Pennsylvania to New York.
- The most scenic section of the road trip takes place on Route 97 through the Hawk’s Nest and Delaware River.
- Sunday Motor Co. Café, a former Mobil gas station that’s now a converted coffee shop, hosts the group for a private brunch.
- Drivers Project vehicles would stay overnight at Hydros Auto Spa, where each car was meticulously detailed. The trip’s third day and final stint returned to PA for the T14 Car Meet.
LESS MILES EQUALS MORE FUN
If you haven’t already gathered from part 1 and part 2 of our coverage, the Drivers Project II presented by Hawk Performance is a road trip experience that we organized which included a select number of invited industry leaders and influencers to three days of networking, spirited driving, and fun.
One of the most significant improvements we made from last year’s format was the amount of time spent on the road. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind cruising with a solid group of fast cars (if there’s no traffic), but let’s be honest, it gets a bit tiring after 300, 400, and even 500 miles on a given day. Because of this, the total mileage of the second Drivers Project was reduced to allow for more free time to enjoy each other’s company and the activities we had planned out.
It proved to be a winning formula as day one finished. There was more than enough time to enjoy both the run up Duryea Drive (a famous public road and SCCA hill climb stage) and a private session at Pocono Raceway made possible by Falken Tire.
Day two would prove to be just as awesome with a manageable 195-mile stint from Scranton, PA, to New York City with three exciting pit stops on the way.
HIGHLIGHT #5: THE HAWK’S NEST
Coming from the West Coast, I had no idea what the Hawk’s Nest was or where it was located. Come to find out that not many Northeast residents have even heard of it as well, making it a nice hidden gem! The Hawk’s Nest is a curvy stretch of road that’s part of Route 97. Situated on the Pennsylvania-New York border, it’s nicely paved, tight and twisty, and picturesque beyond belief as it overlooks the Delaware River. Steep cliffs and colorful trees surround the snake-like road making it a pit stop deserving a thousand photos.
HIGHLIGHT #6: SUNDAY MOTOR CO. CAFÉ
After enough photo ops at the Hawk’s Nest, we inched our way closer to New York City, where we arranged a lunch for the group at Sunday Motor Co. Café in Madison, NJ. As a diehard coffee fanatic, I must admit, Sunday Motor Co. Café might be one of the coolest coffee shops I’ve ever been to (in the world!). The décor is Porsche-inspired, while the entire renovation from what used to be a Mobil gas station and repair shop is a ten out of ten. It’s a 30-mile hike from Manhattan, but worth the trip for one of their delicious toasts, and you never know what cool car you might just find posted up in the lot.
HIGHLIGHT #7: HYDROS AUTO SPA
Anyone that has ventured into New York City on four wheels knows how much of a pain in the ass it can be. While there are multiple tunnels and bridges to choose from, no matter which route you take or what time of the day, the likelihood of being stuck in traffic is extremely high. The headaches worsen for lowered car owners with the daunting task of dodging huge bumps, deep potholes, and seemingly endless road construction. To remedy all this, we teamed up with Hydros Auto Spa in Queens to freshen up and secure the vehicles overnight, avoiding the stress of navigating and parking in NYC. With that out of the way, we were all able to enjoy a private dinner at Shinka Ramen & Sake Bar, home of the world-famous beef bone marrow ramen.
Fun fact: If Hydros sounds familiar to you, they were featured in the BMW x Kith collaboration video last year.
ONCE IN A LIFETIME
The Drivers Project II culminated at the T14 Car Meet, where the three-day road trip completed its circuit. At Turn 14 Distribution, more than a thousand people checked out the cars that had just survived the journey while sponsors displayed their latest products. After the successful meet, a finale dinner in New Hope brought everyone together one last time to look back at the entire weekend and celebrate all the incredible moments that took place.
With two Drivers Project road trips in the books for Pit+Paddock, I’ve been asked a few times already if they’re successful and why we even put it together. It sounds like a lot of work (because it is) and costs a lot of money (venue rentals and catered meals aren’t cheap by any means). But to me, the whole concept is quite simple, and it stems from the idea that experiences are everything. We all attend the same or similar car events every year. Many of them are still quite entertaining and effective for our goals, but The Drivers Project was designed to be a much different and more unique experience that breaks us away from the norm. It brings creative car builders, successful business owners, and powerful trendsetters together to share ideas, network with each other, and become closer friends, all while celebrating performance car culture and enjoying our project cars on the road. Each person on the Drivers Project comes away with dozens of memories to look back on and smile about for many years to come. To me, that’s worth more than anything, that’s worth sharing with more people, and that’s worth doing over and over again.
For information on the next Drivers Project, please e-mail me at email@example.com.
From all of us at Pit+Paddock, we’d also like to thank the partners that made the Drivers Project II happen: AEM Performance Electronics, Akrapovič, Competition Clutch, CSF Performance, Falken Tires, Gates, Hawk Performance, Injen, KW Suspensions, Meguiar’s, Sparco, Titan 7 Wheels, Turbosmart, and Turn 14 Distribution.