Exotic cars leave Kanab wealthier
Kanab » Escorted by a fleet of police vehicles with lights flashing and sirens wailing, 38 high-performance vehicles rolled into Kanab this week and the drivers had lunch and left the town richer by $4,000.
The Lamborghinis, Maseratis, Porsches, Ford GTs and Ferraris belonged to members of Utah Fast Pass (http://www.fastpass.org" Target="_BLANK">http://www.fastpass.org), a nonprofit organization that every year visits a Utah town, leaving behind a charitable donation.
The group's chairman, Tom Mabey, said since its start four years ago, the group has donated $650,000 to communities for scholarships and public safety agencies. It is also a major contributor to the Utah Highway Patrol's Honoring Heroes Foundation that helps support families of fallen or injured troopers.
Mabey said this year's tour began Monday at the Larry H. Miller Motorsport Park in Tooele, where car owners had a chance to see what their cars could do on the track. On Tuesday, the group, escorted by UHP troopers, stopped for the night in southern Utah's Bryce Canyon City.
After leaving Kanab, the group drove through Zion National Park and back to Bryce City for the night. The caravan planned to return to Salt Lake City on Thursday for a gala that includes silent and live auctions.
"This [tour] gives us a chance to see the countryside and meet the people in different communities," said Mabey, who passed out Fast Pass pins to those who came to see the cars parked on a closed section of Kanab's Main Street.
Mabey said the tour attracts exotic sports cars from around the country. The entry fee is $6,000.
"We're looking for unique cars, many limited editions old and new, and hope for as much diversity as we can."
One of the participants was Richard Losee, who was behind the wheel of a cream-colored 1956 Mercedes 300S Gullwing. During the tour in 2006, Losee, of Provo Canyon, was seriously injured when he crashed his million-dollar, limited edition 2003 Ferrari Enzo north of Milford on SR 257.
The accident demolished the car and left Losee with a fractured sternum, vertebrae, ribs and a concussion, but didn't stop him from participating.
"I've supported every [tour] since," said Losee. "It is a great cause, plus all of Utah is so beautiful with so many different landscapes. It's a great day."
He said the wrecked Ferrari is nearly rebuilt, with help from the carmaker.
UHP Capt. Doug McCleave, who was traveling with the group in his patrol car, praised tour members for their generosity.
"They are an incredible group of people," he said. "Their hearts are pure when it comes to this event. They really help rural Utah."