When Dr. Alain Derzie comes to Spring Mountain, it’s to answer his own addiction to racing.
What are the similarities between racing and performing surgery? There’s a hesitation before Dr. Alain Derzie replies, ”You know, I’ve never really thought about it.”
Derzie is a general and trauma surgeon in New York City and among one of the earliest members at Spring Mountain Motor Resort and Country Club outside of Las Vegas, Nevada.
Soon after completing his medical residency, Derzie bought a Chevrolet Corvette and took it to a club gathering at Englishtown Raceway Park in New Jersey. The plan was walk around the show, but when he saw the autocross course, everything changed.
“I don’t think I ever went to the rest of the show,” says Derzie. “They loaned me a helmet and I just kept going back to run the autocross over and over. I was hooked and signed up for the Corvette school near Las Vegas. It wasn’t even called Spring Mountain then.”
In between the time Derzie signed up for the course and when he arrived, Spring Mountain founders John Morris and Brad Rambo had purchased the facility and renamed it. At the time it was rough ribbon of asphalt without a single amenity beyond a Portajohn and two tents with folding chairs in the middle of the desert.
“That was in 2004 and I’m not sure if it’s an obsession or an addiction, but I have it,” continues Derzie. “I went back as often as I could to take the next level course.”
By 2012, Derzie bought his first Radical SR3 and began competing in Spring Mountain’s Race Series. He’s now on his third Radical and also competes in the Blue Marble Cocktails Radical Cup North America series as well.
“I’m fortunate in that as a surgeon I have flexibility to manage my cases and surgeries around the race schedule,” he continues, adding that it takes him out to Spring Mountain eight to 10 times a year, typically staying Wednesday to Monday.
Like many at Spring Mountain, Derzie will rattle off the bounty of amenities that have been developed since that first visit back in 2004. There’s the club house, the garages, the lake, the swimming pools. karting track, shooting range, off-road trails and now over six miles of race track with 50 different configurations – all of which Derzie routinely takes advantage of. As fabulous as all of that is, Derzie says it’s the people that make it what it is.
“Together with this group of people, we’ve been a part of this community that’s been built just for us around our passion for cars and racing,” says Derzie who now also has his own home on the property overlooking the track. “Many of them are a big deal in their field, but at the track, there’s no pretenses, just enthusiasm.”
Among those that Derzie has become close with is former IndyCar and sports car driver Jeff Bucknum. He coached Derzie early on and now Derzie is helping to return the favor. Bucknum’s son Spencer is beginning his own racing career, debuting this year in the F4 United States Championship. It was in Derzie’s Radical that Spencer had the opportunity to show he could be a third-generation Bucknum racer like his father and grandfather, Ronnie.
Back to the question of racing and surgery, Derzie has an answer.
“I think in both cases it’s easy to say they are both are about the adrenalin rush, but in reality it’s anything but,” he concludes. “Racing and surgery are the same in that whether it’s getting through turn 1 at the start of a race or treating a gunshot wound to the abdomen, the ability to react effectively and under control is the result of both training and experience, knowing that there is always more to learn.”
The ultimate motorsports community
Spring Mountain offers on-property and track-side lots to build the home of your dreams, creating the ultimate community for motorsports enthusiasts.
“I’m super lucky to have been able to build a home in such a beautiful place literally on the race track,” says Dr. Derzie. “On a recent weekend I wasn’t able to attend the race, but invited all the coaches, spotters and spectators to watch from my roof deck as it was the best view for that layout. I got to watch the race from New York via my roof cam!
“I think the super interesting thing about the Spring Mountain Estates is that it’s a place where a bunch of friends and fellow racers got together and built a neighborhood. Usually, you buy a house, move in and then meet your neighbors. We did it the other way around!”
Home sites are going fast. Contact Mike Weeks at (800) 391-6891 for lot pricing and availability.