Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Just bought off Craiglist in Topeka, from the original owner, a real Twister Special Ranchero GTs with a 429CJ and Drag Pack

of the 201 1970 Ranchero GTs made with the 429CJ, 60 were Drag Pack, and only 2 were Twister Specials

the original owner parked it in 1977, and sold the engine in 1979. The car sat around his place for nearly 40 years until he decided to sell it. That's sort of unusual.


lined up with precision

cars and coffee means getting out of bed early... why not burgers and burnouts?

I'm up late til midnight, regularly... and do not like waking up before sunrise.

So when I hear about cars and coffee events where the parking is all taken up before 7 am, well, good for them, I'll sleep on instead.

But this past weekend, In and Out and Hot Rod Magazine joined up for a car show at AAA Speedway in Fontana. Now that makes sense. They didn't get the word out ahead of time very well though.

It was Hot Rods way of celebrating their 70th anniversary... but by the looks of it, they didn't make any effort to advertise it 1/100th as much as they advertise Roadkill.

It's on the Hot Rod Facebook page though, for anyone who can find time to track everything that pops up on Facebook.


Monday, November 19, 2018

Coffee and donuts video: how Chrysler built a tank factory before or during WW2, and used a steam locomotive to heat it... which was a clever, fast, and portable heating unit.

When you've memorized the course, run it many times, and a lot of people have, your times are only limited by your car's acceleration

DriveTribe teamed up with Shell, Penske and Paralyzed Veterans to send Nelson Samsel and his wife around an IndyCar track with none other than Hélio Castroneves and Simon Pagenaud.

they don't have the video on Youtube, so you'll need to click through to get kicked in the feels. Have a kleenex, of course

the QarOptics Racing Vette, whose name is the graphics design of the vinyl wrap, and it looks pretty damn cool

Another first, a Willys in the Optima Challenge... it won a Golden Ticket

BYO squeegee handle?

It's not often a station wagon gets into the Optima races... let alone a wood grain Pontiac with a hood scoop

join me in admiration for a remarkable paint job, or whatever this is... painted carbon fiber with clear coat?

it had a team mate car, #737 above, #775 below


The Patchwork Bike, author: Maxine Beneba Clarke illustrator: Van Thanh Rudd

When you live in a village at the edge of the no-go desert, you need to make your own fun. That's when you and your brothers get inventive and build a bike from scratch, using everyday items like an old milk pot (maybe Mum is still using it, maybe not) and a used flour sack. You can even make a license plate from bark if you want. The end result is a spectacular bike, perfect for whooping and laughing as you bumpetty bump over sand hills, past your fed-up mum and right through your mud-for-walls home.

It has a bent bucket seat, bashed tin-can handlebars, and wood-cut wheels — and riding the patchwork bike that you and your crazy brothers made is the best fun in the whole village.


After filing for bankruptcy last month, the Bondurant School of Racing has instead, closed for good. Expect an amazing auction of the assets soon

20-year-old Naomi Osaka defeated American Serena Williams on Sept 8th to become the first Japanese player to claim a Grand Slam singles crown. What's that got to do with cars? Well, Nissan hopes it's the start of a champion's reign, and that Osaka will be the next Jordan, Willams, or Tiger.

It doesn't hurt that she's a good looking young woman, and that she's haafu... so, making huge headlines and tons of free publicity (like the article you are reading right now)

Naomi Osaka, who was born in Japan to a Haitian-born father and Japanese mother and raised in the United States since age 3, now has a GTR of her own, and a 3 year contract.

Nissan is putting a lot of weight on there never being a tennis player from Japan to reach international stardom, and, well, there still isn't from what I just typed. Maybe this shows that very conservative country is loosening up a bit, or, just pouncing to try and get the next Tiger Woods, Serena Williams, Micheal Jordan, Lewis Hamilton, etc as their brand ambassador before anyone else does.

Publicly at least – Japan is changing.
 In 2015, Ariana Miyamoto became the first biracial woman crowned Miss Japan.
 Then Priyanka Yoshikawa, who has Indian heritage, won Miss World Japan in 2016.

The mega star level of brand ambassador identity seems to have worked out pretty damn well for Nike, and a mega star would help Nissan out... I can't recall them ever having one before. Why they didn't choose someone in the vehicular field? Like some one who created, designed, or raced the GTR? I'll guess the language issue... maybe it's not going to work internationally without a fluent English and Japanese speaker. There are 4 takumi in Nissan... why can't they get the spokesman position? Perhaps it's youth, sports achievement's free publicity, and being female.

Must suck to be Jann Mardenborough right now, he was dropped from the 50 Most Marketable althletes list after 2016, and Naomi Osaka was number 27 for 2018  http://www.sportspromedia.com/most-marketable

Why wasn't 23 time grand slam winner Serena Williams ever approached for the job? Probably her attitude, and ugly public use of it, where as Naomi Osaka is a clean slate. Ironically Williams match with Osaka was the most recent of her public tantrums. And the reputation of the Japanese is well known for respecting decorum...

Osaka turned pro in 2013 and qualified for the Women's Tennis Association tour championship at age 16, debuting at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford, Calif.
In 2016, Osaka qualified to enter her first Grand Slam tournament, the Australian Open, and made it into the third round. The same season, she also reached the third round of the French Open and the U.S. Open.

In October 2016, she was the runner-up at the Toray Pan Pacific Open. The performance earned her the title of "WTA Newcomer of the Year."

In March 2018, she became the first half Japanese woman to win a Premier Mandatory event, at the WTA Indian Wells tour.

On Sept. 8, 2018, Osaka became the first half Japanese player to win a women's singles Grand Slam.

World rank: 7th (as of Sept. 10, 2018)

Although the money involved in this contract was not announced, the deal comes a week after Osaka’s rumored $8.5 million partnership with Adidas, the biggest endorsement deal of any female athlete at the apparel company.

“With a combination of grit and grace, Naomi Osaka is not afraid to take on the best tennis players of our time and win,” said Asako Hoshino, svp at Nissan, in a statement. “This is the same spirit of performance that Nissan has embodied throughout our history.”

Maybe I'm simply ignorant (after all, I'm just a car guy) of the way the world describes people now, mixed race people seem to be referred to whichever race they find most useful? Pres Obama is half, Naomi Osaka is half, but they are referred to by the opposite race. Anyone else find that odd? If Pres Obama is the first black president, because he appears so, then how does Naomi Osaka find her self referred to as Japanese, when she doesn't appear to be Japanese, and has lived in Florida for the past 6/7ths of her life?

Damned if I know. I'm just glad she was who Nissan turned to, and not Serena.


I never picked up on the lyrics to "Down Under" by Men at Work

Traveling in a fried-out Kombi
 On a hippie trail, head full of zombie
 I met a strange lady, she made me nervous
She took me in and gave me breakfast


1956 Chevy clay model, with a mix of ideas, gullwing doors from a Mercedes, fins from a Cadillac, and the split rear window

thanks Doug!

After the World 100 win (Oct 14th), Tim McCreadie loaded up his tiny trailer, and pulled his hauler around the race track while beating on the horn.

Tim McCreadie showed up at Eldora Speedway with a beat up 1996 box trailer pulled by a 2001 duallie. He parked it next to the shiny million dollar double decker rigs and unloaded for the World 100.

Following advice from Tony Stewart, McCreadie went on to claim the $53,000 winners check that night on Tony’s half mile dirt track. It was his first win in several months after a year of ups and downs for McCreadie and his Longhorn team.

The World 100 winner’s car wasn’t hauled to the track in a half-million-dollar toterhome and stacker trailer is worth celebrating. It gives a lot of small-budget racers a little hope.

Following the race, McCreadie loaded up the trailer and ran a victory lap in the truck and trailer, with the horn blaring. https://twitter.com/twitter/statuses/1051463555529224192  It was an awesome moment. A moment that has now been put into print via a T-Shirt.

In the Saturday afternoon make-up portion of the show, McCreadie finished 4th in his heat race. However, the top-three are required to stop in the tech area after the race. Both Billy Moyer and Scott Bloomquist accidentally drove right past the tech area. Both of those drivers were disqualified and McCreadie was moved from 4th to 2nd.

Tim McCreadie has retired the Sweeteners Plus double decker hauler. That box is owned by the Sweeteners company. Due to stricter laws, the company is now requiring that one of their own employees drive the truck or for Tim himself to drive it. But, Tim doesn’t have a CDL nor does he have time to get one.

Additionally, no Sweetners employee is interested in taking a pay cut to hit the road with a national dirt late model team. As a result, Justin Labonte has pulled out his own trailer and hit the road with Tim in their tiny enclosed trailer.

“There’s no quit with us,” McCreadie said. "I don’t mean to be mean to the other teams out there, but I don’t think a lot of people would have kept going if they were going to do it the way we’ve been doing it… to do it the way we’ve done it for probably five months is hell.”

Weekly racers try to learn everything they can from the pros, mostly it’s setup stuff or driving techniques, but a lot of times it can be something as simple as keeping your head up when things aren’t going your way.


17 yr old driving in the Macau Gran Prix touched another car in the approach to a corner, and broke the left suspension, and all control of her car... and launched right into a building, OVER the guard rail - - backwards

Sophia Floersch - with 'Dare to be Different' on the side of her vehicle goes over Sho Tsuboi while flying off the track at 172 mph

'Sophia was really close to Jehan, so when Jehan braked early she had no time to react.

'She hit Jehan's right-rear, and that spun her around straight into Lisboa, and she flew into the other car. I just hope she's OK.'

The initial crash that sent Floersch into the barrier also led to damage that rendered her brakes useless as she hurtled towards the following right hand turn.

Once at the turn she was catapulted into the air by a curb, that is designed to stop drivers cutting the corner and looking to gain an advantage.

above are many camera angles, real time and slo mo
Below, a single slow mo


a shop heater that uses old motor oil... huh! Great idea!