Port Moody Thunder Racing
In the early summer of 2000, then Chief Constable Paul Shrive approved a special initiative. In an effort to draw high school-aged youth closer to the Port Moody Police it was proposed to sponsor a race car for Port Moody Secondary. The goal of the program was to obtain a vehicle suitable for static display and to compete in the British Columbia Senior Secondary Motor Sport Association races held from March to September. There are over 60 schools in B.C and Washington State competing in this class. The BCSSMA has been in existence for over twenty years and has attracted some major sponsors including ICBC, Lordco Parts, and UAP/NAPA: JDT Auto parts to name just a few.
In the spring of 2001, Captain Robert Olson (Ret) donated his 1968 Corvette to the City of Port Moody. The vehicle had already been refitted as a drag car. The class the vehicle ran in was called Super Gas and ran the quarter mile in 9.80 seconds. There was very little in terms of modification to have the Corvette run in the High School class. It sounds funny for a race car but it needed to be slowed down! In the BCSSMA, student vehicles cannot run faster than 12 seconds in the quarter mile. It was quite a challenge that the students worked on to solve. Eventually, a simple throttle stop brought the vehicle into compliance with the rules. So after a donated paint job by 1st Class Autobody the vehicle was decaled and rolled out for race season.
The car itself is a fully-marked Police vehicle sporting the Port Moody colour scheme. The Lower Mainland has over 300 annual car shows and related events. The amount of positive exposure has been enormous.
The vehicle is stored at Port Moody Secondary and is maintained by the students.
The program encourages interaction between students and the community. It develops both mechanical and life skills in the participants as they transform their vehicles into race cars. The students learn the importance of teamwork, which also contributes to school pride. Some of the youths that compete in this class can be categorized as “high risk”. We, as the Police, should be targeting them for more positive contacts.
In the summer of 2006 there was an unfortunate accident which resulted in some major damage to the Corvette. The front end damage has since been repaired with work completed by Davenport Custom Cars. A big thanks goes out to Bob for his excellent work on the Corvette. The engine was rebuilt by the Port Moody Secondary students with help from Brent Kirby, PMSS automotive teacher. Now, all that is left is the body work, new decals, and paint. The Corvette will be rolled out in the new paint scheme of black and white.
The above noted picture was taken just prior to the accident. The decal scheme had just been changed and this was the 1st public appearance with the new look.
Below are some photographs taken at Davenport Custom cars near Merritt, B.C. The first set shows the damage to the frame and body. The last 3 photographs detail the repairs completed so far.
Currently PMPD Racing is seeking a major sponsor to help support the repairs to the Corvette. The program operates on donations only, there is no financial support received from the City of Port Moody. Any inquiries can be made to Constable Greg Gunson @ 604-461-3456.
Also, we would like to thank our sponsors:
- Williams Moving and Storage
- Fix Auto Centers
- Port Moody Signs
- Royal Canadian legion Branch 119
- Coquitlam Auto Parts
- Port Moody Secondary
- Circuit Tire
- Port Moody Rotary Club 50/50
- 1st Class Autobody
- Bob Davenport Custom Race Cars
- Cummins Trailers
- Nicolelina’s Cafe
- The Current Corporation
- Port Moody Travel & Cruise Centre
- Don & Patty Klassen Real Estatez