We’re sure we’ll look back thinking- why o why did we do this?! But humans aren’t typically good at learning from other’s mistakes- and we’re sure as hell no exception! So we are entering a wheezy, beat up Mazda Miata with a cobbled together turbo kit into the inaugural ChumpCar World Series- an endurance event for $500 crap-can race cars.
So a $500 turbocharged Miata, you say? We purchased the beat up and abused Miata from Peter of Magnolia Garage, the same team that took pity on us when we were suddenly orphaned on our way down to the 2008 Thunderhill 24 Hours of LeMons. Needing room for their new project cars, Peter agreed to let the “Dyin Miata” go for the princely sum of $425. The Miata took a tremendous wallop during that last event- which was good for price- yet bad for handling: I’m sure even an alignment won’t compensate for the frame damage it suffered. Aside from that- upon somewhat close inspection, Magnolia Garage’s accounting was “reasonably” good for justifying a $500 turbo Miata. Hint: you start with a real pile of crap! The car did receive a hefty penalty from the LeMons judges in 2008- however, their panties were in knots primarily because of the lack of theme- and we all know LeMons is becoming an art-car race.
ChumpCar, while many would argue is a clone of LeMons, is more about bare knuckles crap-can racing. Sure, themes are smiled upon- but the lack of a theme isn’t something they would take you out back and cane the bottoms of your feet over.
Right- Theme! Our theme, managed by Kelley, our lovely and sexy Art and Culture Director (she actually has many many titles..), will be tarting up the Miata and team as the “Autosport Lab Rats”. Much more on that later.
Team? We have a crack team of wicked driving talent and mechanical skills assembled:
* Brent Picasso (Captain, driver, too clever by half )
* Kelley Picasso (Art and Culture Director)
* Scott Miller (Driver, my right hand man (very important since I’m a lefty), brains)
* Sean Green (Driver, team captain of the fantastic Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys)
* McKenzie Spoor (Driver, owner of Ideation Design Group (great graphics!))
* John Kimball (Driver, mad autocross driver, says “Nice!!” about everything- to the point where I’ve been infected)
* Drew Hanft (Driver, mad autocross skills, wishes his AE86 was as fast as my AW11 — when both are running, of course )
* Bret Dodson (Driver, prolific writer, magnetically attracted to your wine collection)
* Vadim Lobanov (Crew/support, too smart for his own good, refuses to buy a Lotus Elise)
* Doug Chase (Crew/Support- may show up to wrench if he fancies- or throw things at us- owner of Chase Race)
Officially we’re super excited to have assembled this kind of talent! Giddy, really. Secretly, we’re going to ruin them for all other racing after we’re done sucking the life force from them. (queue evil cackling)!
Our little slice of crap: