Trip Of A Lifetime.
Thats what was in store when I joined the "Yuppie Rally". A 5 day drive with 20 high performance cars from Boston, MA to Knoxville, TN and back. Our destination was the "Tail Of The Dragon", one of the most challenging roads in the country. The rally was to benefit Franciscan Children's Hospital - a great adventure for a great cause.
My car for the trip: a heavily modified 2002 Porsche 996 Turbo with 650HP. A true monster of a car that would complete the 2500 mile journey in record time. Until it broke. On day 2, My co-driver and I began to notice smoke coming from the back of the car. Upon inspection we discovered that a power steering hose had developed a leak which was getting worse by the minute. We purchased a case of fluid from a local Porsche Dealer, filled the reservoir and pressed on. Bad idea. We made it to Williamsburg VA late on a Friday night and inspected the car again. The leak was now much worse and continuing any further without repair was no longer an option. Enter LMN Motorsports, and Lutzo the owner.
I did a Google search for Porsche Mechanic in VA and found LMN's site.
The site looked legit, and described Lutzo's experience with a Grand Am Racing Team. Just the type of guy we need on the fly. His shop was 66 miles from our hotel. We made a plan to call him early the next morning, hoping that he worked on Saturdays and would be able to help us out. We were 800 miles from home and not happy with the idea of dropping out of the rally.
I called LMN early Saturday morning. Lutzo answered the phone and I filled him in on our situation. He told me that he was not planning to work that day, as he was home with a fever and sick as a dog. He did give me some advice on where the leak might be coming from, and advice on what parts may be needed. I thanked him for his time and now needed to come up with a Plan B. Just as my co-driver and I were contemplating our next move, Lutzo called me back. He said he would come in to help us. Amazing! We filled the power steering fluid again, set the navigation for LMN Motorsports and headed out. 66 Miles to go, fingers crossed.
As soon as we arrived I knew we were in good hands. The parking lot at LMN was filled with Porsches of all varieties. Lutzo greeted us and drove the leaking Porsche into the bay. He didn't even stall the car, very easy to do with our Stage III Racing Clutch. He carefully put the car on his lift and started removing the airbox to find the problem. It was leaking from the exact spot he described over the phone, and needed a new hose. Now the bad news - he did not have such a hose in stock. He said he wanted to help us and would see what he could do. He had an old clutch assembly from one of his racing cars, and said he may be able to use parts from that to get us home. We were skeptical but already trusted Lutzo and had not much of a choice at the moment. We waited a few hours for the doctor to perform the surgery. He came back with good news. His modified hose looks like its going to do the trick. He topped off the power steering fluid one last time and started putting the car back together. He cleaned the engine bay and fired up the car. The hose was holding. He then pressure tested the pump and again, no issues. Looks like we will make it home after all - Lutzo had performed a miracle!
We paid his very reasonable invoice, thanked him profusely and headed on to our next stop - Atlantic City, only 350 miles away. Lutzo headed home to get some rest and take care of his fever. The car made it to Atlantic City with zero issues. We checked the line upon arrival and his repair had worked like a charm. I got a text from Lutzo that night asking if we made it to AC. This guy really cares about his customers! I told him his repair worked great, and thanked him again. The next day we drove the final 370 miles from AC back home to Boston with zero issues. Lutzo texted me again that evening to make sure we made it all the way home. Incredible customer service from an incredible mechanic. Words can not describe how grateful we are for his help, or how impressed we are with both his work and follow through. Thanks Lutzo, you are a true Porsche Master!