My name is David Bowlin. I definitely inherited the “car guy” bug from my father. My dad was a Chrysler guy. I thought cars that broke down was normal (We had an Aspen). He loved the Chrysler New Yorker from back in the 1950’s until the K-car. In fact, I learned to drive on the K-car 1984 New Yorker Turbo…sorry dad about the transmission…revving the motor in neutral and then shifting into drive cannot be good for any car, let alone a K-car. Our car looked just like this, same color and even with the missing hub center cap:
Nonetheless, I can remember helping my Dad change the tires to snow tires in the winter and back to the regular tires in the spring on all of the older Chryslers until the modern technology of all season radials came out. Hanging with Dad was some good times.
However, my blood boiled for competition. I wasn’t the four door, landau top type of guy. I could sit on the floor and watch car racing for hours. To the horror of my family and friends… I wanted to learn and drive manual transmission. Two pedals? You can’t control a car with two pedals, I professed. To the astonishment of my racing mind, my mother bought me a 1991 Integra RS hatchback (roll up windows, no radio, etc.) Confused the heck out of my Dad, but I LOOOOOVVVVVEEED this car.
(same color, without the ricer wheels). This car started me on the path towards driving fast…. side story=> So, I used to race bicycles in NYC. One day, I volunteered to take this older racer and his wife from the Northern Bronx to Central Park. The bike races would start around 6am. Nothing was up or around. Anyway, I pick them up and get on the road. I get there in 15 minutes, with bikes up top on the rack, etc. She only spoke Spanish, but definitely understood her when she say “Muy Rapido, No. No”. They never wanted to ride again, go figure?!?!
So, I started down the path of modifying the car. I added some 15″ wheels. Didn’t want to go too big with rotational inertia and unsprung weight, added strut bar and then… the 1996 Integra LS came out… oooohhhh, but, I hated those bugeye lights,
but the car was a upgrade to my 1991. Faster, but definitely softer suspension. I bought this car and started down the path of upgrades to this car and then decided, why upgrade? There is the GSR. Holy VTEC batman !!! I bought the same exact color as my LS, so my parents wouldn’t realize I was getting further into debt. But, I did confess later on. So, now I had a 1998 Integra GSR. Wow!!! This car was fast. I tasted a track day at Limerock with the Westchester Sports Car Club My dream car….. or so I thought. Then the mother of all Integra’s was produced. The mighty, mighty screaming Type R (moment of silence please.) This car came out at the height of all ricedom. The height of the import car craze. This car was almost God like. So, when someone decided to steal my GSR (in broad daylight mind you, from in front of my apartment). I did what any speed loving person would do. I went out and bought a 4 door Civic EX. Huh??!!?? You did what???
At this stage of my life (and still continues to this day), I was/am heavily into Church, trying to be a good Christian, etc. I was going to give up my fast ways and get a (in a deep voice) “responsible car”. So after learning how to ebrake U-turn this car in the middle of tight city streets, wearing down the sidewalls of the front tires, I was blessed with a great new job and decided, “I am just going to have to take this one up with God.” I bought a 2000 Integra Type R #0324
Yes owning this car is right up there with idol worship. There is a lot of hype around this car. The reality is that this car was light, decently powered, amazingly balanced for a FWD car (nice lift off throttle oversteer), and yellow. I autocrossed the nonsense out of the car. One year I was the D Stock champion of Northern NJ SCCA. What more could you ask in a car? I could ask that Honda not engineer this and the Civic so closely that this car became the biggest theft magnet in the world. Yes, you guessed it. Stolen. End of story… but wait. <singing> Lo-jack here to save the daaaaayyyyyy !!!! <end singing>
Now what to do? I have a car with 35K miles stolen once, returned basically untouched (you say you don’t believe in God?) and I can’t drive it on the street. So, I bought a 1990 Miata and thought about Spec Pinata racing. : But, the thought of constant body work, but great competition. I changed my mind. Sold the Miata and I stripped my Type R, caged it and started racing in Honda Challenge(hard to see, but my car is in the upper left hand corner): .
So, in 2004, I raced and became the H2 East Coast Honda Challenge Champion. Dayum! U that fast? No. I was really racing against myself. The fastest guy (Jason Franza) retired the year I started. I was about as fast as the H3 guys, maybe even a little slower at times.
but then, I met my wonderful wife. Now, my life was about to take an e-brake u-turn.
So, my daily driving is in a Prius and Acura MDX. So, you are thinking, I am castrated? Or maybe the heat from Texas has gotten to me? Well, those are my daily. My passion and fun became this:
It is a 2007 S2000, almost fully modified for track duty. This car was/is quick (not fast…Vipers, Vettes, P-cars, Evo/STi’s are fast). Nonetheless, this was an AMAZING track car but a HORRIBLE street car. Just didn’t fit my current lifestyle (40, father, etc.). Just didn’t do it for me anymore. So, I sold the car and ended up with nothing as a replacement.
Basically after talking with Jake Raby of Flat 6 Innovations, I decided to get a 2002 Porsche 911 with his upgraded 3.8 Performer engine. This ticks all the boxes right now: Mature, fast, Wife will be happy to be seen in it, back seat for my family, fast, IMS and other M96 issues fixed, etc…. all for the price of a nicely optioned Honda Accord. You gotta love depreciation!
Anyway, I instruct with Apex Driving Academy. Come on out and say “hi.”
So, this is me, thanks for taking the time reading this page. I hope to chronicle the track day and autocross scene in the North Texas area. God Bless.
Track Driving History:
Watkins Glen (New York – driver and instructor)
Limerock (Connecticut – older configuration)
Summit Point (West Virginia)
Pocono Road Course (Pennsylvania)
Beaver Run (Pennsylvania – driver and instructor)
Virginia International Raceway (Virginia – driver and instructor)
Carolina Motorsports Park (South Carolina – older configuration, driver and instructor)
Motorsports Ranch Cresson (Texas – driver and instructor)
Eagles Canyon Raceway (Texas – driver and instructor)
Texas World Speedway (Texas)
Gingerman Raceway (Michigan)