NSXPO 2019 was held in Washington, D.C., for the first time ever, and it was a great success. The weather was spectacular, and most importantly everyone in attendance had a great time, as we celebrated a shared philosophy of what a driver’s car should be.
NSXPO 2019 began in the rolling hills of West Virginia at Summit Point Motorsports with ideal weather.
Summit Main is a relatively easy track to learn with its 10 marked turns. It provides high-speed sections leading into hard braking zones, fast sweeping turns and winding switchbacks from turns 5 through 9 that make you feel like you’re on the mountain roads located near the track. Most drivers were new to this track and it really allowed people to delve into the capabilities of the new and old NSX.
We were fortunate to have Chin Track Days on hand to provide an experienced hand at managing the event and from the first blow of the conch shell in the morning to the final lap on the second day, their expertise was on full display. Much of the smooth operations over the two-day event are a credit to Mark Hicks and his team and we want to give them a special thank you for all they provided to this year’s event.
We were joined by legendary driver and NSXCA President Peter Cunningham who was handed the keys to a factory test vehicle. Also in attendance were James and Nick Robinson, two Honda engineers who were drivers of the Pikes Peak Time Attack NSXs. Between these three drivers, we ran more than 150 high-speed hot laps with smiling participants in the passenger seat. A big shout out not only to the drivers, but to all who helped keep the cars running and getting people smoothly in and out of the vehicles.
The Social portion of NSXPO 2019 was located in National Harbor; strategically located just outside the beltway with spectacular views of the Potomac River but far enough away to avoid the awful DC traffic and congestion. National Harbor had plenty of bars and restaurants and even a mechanical bull - much to the delight of the attendees.
Events kicked off on Thursday with a rooftop welcome reception where attendees could pick up their name badge. The event organizers had worked with a long time friend of the NSXCA Common Fibers to create amazing badges that were made from carbon fiber that were a great hit. They also had a surprise in the form of a commemorative pin made from the aluminum of a Zanardi chassis.
The following day the group rolled out to the Udvar Hazy Air and Space museum for a quick photo shoot and a chance to check out one of the best collections of aircrafts to be found in the world. Following the museum we had a quick bite to eat before allowing people to choose to drive the scenic Skyline Drive or head back to the National Harbor and explore downtown DC. The group regathered for a spectacular evening dinner boat cruise along the Potomac. The weather cooperated perfectly for the evening and it was a great time to catch up with old friends and make new ones.
Saturday started bright and early with an indoor concourse in the amazing 30,000 square foot exhibition hall. The hall was specifically built for automotive events and included a vehicle ramp in the rear with an appropriate angle for lowered vehicles so you could just drive your car in! In addition to the amazing display of owner vehicles, we had presentations from Acura and vendor booths all around. NSXPO Participants also split off to visit the Nation's capitol via special shuttle buses from the hotel.
Saturday evening wrapped up with the traditional banquet dinner and live auction. Our first speaker for the event was the legendary John Davis of Motorweek - television's longest running car show. John dazzled the audience with his impressive knowledge of automobiles as well as providing a wonderful trip down memory lane as only he could narrate discussing the ups and downs of the media journey with the NSX. We were also joined by Ted Klaus who stepped away from his role in as Global Development Lead for the NSX successor - the NC1 - and moved in to the role of president of Honda's Performance Division. Ted gave a wonderful overview of Honda's North American racing activities and we were extra delighted to be joined by Ted's extended family.
In the end what made NSXPO 2019 a great event wasn't the venue, the activities or even the unique experiences - it was the people. Year after year we get the greatest collection of people joining us at NSXPO. People you genuinely want to hang out with. People who really get it when you talk about your car. People who appreciate the extremely rare and special as well as the extremely modified and customized. People make up the greatest part of every NSXPO and 2019 was no exception.
- Dan Murphy
2019 NSXPO Chair