Something about this time of year causes people to make lists. Perhaps it stems from the annual holiday letters with the list of places visited and accomplishments. Perhaps it is the natural tendency to be retrospective. Perhaps it is the hope that you can justify another year spent on the planet. Perhaps it is to remind yourself of just how much you did accomplish. Whatever the reason, if all of the automotive magazines can do it, then why not give it a whirl. So following, in no particular order, are ten (ok, 11) things from 2009 that I think are worth highlighting.


  1. Sebastian Loeb won his 6th consecutive WRC title. The greatest rally driver ever, and one of  the greatest drivers ever IMHO.
  2. The arrival of the BMW R90S to my garage. A long quest ends, and a new project begins.
  3. Valentino Rossi wins his 7th world title. We are witnessing another all-time great.
  4. Cash for Clunkers. A lot of decent cars go to the junkyard. People who could have used basic transportation get nothing, and motorcycles are ignored.
  5. The new BMW S1000RR. I want one (and it is within the realm of possibility). The new Porsche Panamera. I don\’t (and it\’s not).
  6. Brawn F1. A cinderella story at the pinnacle of motorsports. It\’s almost enough to make you believe in F1 again.
  7. The BMW MOA Rally. A great adventure involving the Mac Pac, onroad riding, offroad riding, a torrential downpour, pizza delivered to a parking lot, mountain twisties, farkling, and great mexican food in Tenessee.
  8. The US automotive bailouts. If you ignore the marketplace and fail to be competitive for long enough, the US taxpayer will fund a continuation once more, for the last time, again. But this time we really really really mean it.
  9. Rise of the Cafe Racer. This was the year in which the Cafe Racer (along with all things late sixties) broke out of its cult following confines to re-enter the main stream. I\’m not always thrilled when stuff I like becomes popular, but more examples of the breed around town is cool.
  10. Camping at Limerock Vintage Weekend. Although an annual attendee, the camping experience allows you to feel like you are an extra in the movie Le Mans (without the sideburns). 
  11. Electric Vehicles. Everybody\’s doing it. What if we just made everybody travelling to work use a car or bike under 1600cc, or public transportation where available ?


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