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Skid Marks

The first Philippine FJ Summit

/ 01:45 AM March 29, 2017
A typical FJ Cruiser drive usually takes up an entire day because the drive is just part of the activity.

A typical FJ Cruiser drive usually takes up an entire day because the drive is just part of the activity.

As a car guy, the lifestyle that surrounds car ownership is often fun, exciting and adventurous. Social circles often emerge from meeting like-minded people who own and enjoy the same model or brand of cars.

Of particular note are Toyota FJ Cruiser owners. Many of these owners are quite different from typical car guys: the typical FJ Cruiser owner is a more mature and genteel type, usually self-made and crucially loves the outdoors. This is what separates FJ Cruiser owners from owners of say, sportscars who are very segmented, and other types of 4X4 vehicles.

A typical FJ Cruiser meet is over coffee and a meal, as opposed to other car clubs that meet at night. A typical FJ Cruiser drive /trail usually takes up an entire day because the drive is just part of the activity. Upon reaching their destination, many FJ Cruiser owners will either go camping/glamping or at least enjoy a picnic and barbecue over some beautiful, unspoiled natural landscape. Let’s see you try doing that in your low-slung pocket rocket!

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As for me, I enjoyed my few brief stints of off-road driving and trail riding because the drama happens very slowly: traversing a tough, slippery uphill section, crossing a river, forging through some difficult sandy terrain and everything else in between while waiting for your buddies. Yes, on the track, the whole point is to go faster than everyone else around you, or at least go faster than your previous lap. But on the trail, the greatest sense of achievement comes when your entire convoy is able to successfully navigate a treacherous and difficult off-road trail. That I think is what’s great about 4X4’s in general, and amongst owners of FJ Cruisers, particularly those who belong to FJ Cruiser Club of the Philippines. I’m a sort of “unofficial” member of this group because I’m always absent on their trails, and can usually only spend an hour or two during their breakfast coffee meets.

But I plan to make it up to these really great bunch of guys and gals by attending the first ever Pilipinas FJ Summit.

The event is patterned after the FJ Summit in the United States and in Japan wherein all FJ owners get together, park their vehicles side-by-side and enjoy two days of fun, camaraderie, endless stories, some tech talk/shop-talk basically just meet new people. Aside from the collection of FJ Cruisers that will be present, there will be some vendors selling FJ Cruiser and off-road /4X4 equipment as well as some camping /outdoor gear for sale at great discounts and of course food for everyone! Sounds exciting!

The event will be held at the Jose Rizal Plaza at the Calamba City Hall on April 29-30. On April 30, there will be a fun run for all FJ Cruiser owners, and a special short-course off-road track will be present at the 4-hectare venue to test out your FJ Cruiser’s abilities. You don’t have to be an FJ Cruiser owner to attend the event of course. Everyone is welcome, and there is a nice family vibe towards these events so bring the entire gang and feast your eyes on over 100 FJ Cruisers at the event! And trust me when I tell this, there are no two FJ Cruisers alike; such is the sheer amount of parts and accessories available for the FJ Cruiser that you’ll never ever find a twin or clone there.

This event is also a first in a series of events called Buhayani, a series of events meant to commemorate our national hero, Jose P. Rizal, who is a native of Calamba, Laguna.

So if you’re not doing anything on the weekend of April 29-30, take the drive down south to Calamba, see a bunch of FJ Cruisers, meet new friends and soak in the festive atmosphere.

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