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Gryphon Gear: Rare Beasts of the Track


#81

Whatever do you mean!? We use the finest time tested techniques! :wink:


#82

Wow. All of your posts are just awesome strop!
For sure the “storyline” that I try to make for Scirocco Global is far from being as good as for your company, but maybe we’ll try to not letting you alone within the top of the racing world… :unamused:


#83

cheers iraptor. I wanted to be slightly realistic in that the story that I (and Cen) envisage for the company is that it’s one of those small startup supercar companies with big vision, but as you know, the early years are absolutely critical for small companies with small turnover. High risk potentially yields high benefits, but one wrong decision and it’s definitely all over. So the way I’m (slowly) crafting it, Gryphon Gear starts out as just a small handful of people who took their own capital and free time and built a car, then realised they could make a thing of it, and then contacts were drawn in and funds started opening up from sponsorships and their gradual involvement in racing. Certainly not going to become a racing giant straight up, but given the collection of their expertise, their network, and their results, things are looking promising. We just need for our racing driver not to wreck too many cars…

While I’m at it, in a last hurrah for b1362, I finally went around and reworked the Mephisto’s back end to try and more closely reflect my design intention, including the multilayered integrated splitter/rear vents. It appears to be a refinement… if refined is at all what you could call the rear end of the Mephisto.

Expect to see this car posted very soon as the late last entry to the Mille Cavalli shootout!


#84

The taillight display on this car is by far one of my favorites on the forum.


#85

Thanks. It was inspired by the way the tail light array of the P1 followed the contours of the shell. It was difficult to emulate the flow here, so it took on a slightly blockier look.


#86

It’s been a few weeks since I was around, mainly due to me managing to catch every virus that seems to go through the hospital (we had a run of Influenza last week for one). Therefore I have neglected a number of things, including (but not limited to):
[ul]]The post “Automation Endurance Challenge” writeup that I was going to release along with the announcement finalising the details of the Ascension Mephisto (but this is now very very old news)/:m]
]The “Mille Cavalli Shootout” article, for which I have all the data and the graphs and now just need to write the article and draw some pretty pictures/:m]
]Beta testing/:m][/ul]
Those things shall resume shortly!

Along the way, I will have some new Gryphon Gear-esque goodies for you. I guarantee that you won’t have seen the likes of what I have coming up, including:
[ul]]Cars that make it around Nordschleife in under 7 minutes despite not having active aero and being limited to 2 lips and 2 wings/:m]
]Cars with unprecedented amounts of power (2300hp? Pish!) that could break 500km/h AND have decent reliability… and can actually be driven around corners… though I would never go so far as to claim that it might be practical (certainly not given the ludicrous turbo power curve…)/:m][/ul]
In short, stuff’s gonna happen, so get excited!


#87

Yay! Welcome back! I look forward to your upcoming goodies. :stuck_out_tongue:


#88

Gryphon Gear is delighted to publicly share a preview of its latest project, an ultra-top-end street-legal bespoke custom refitting (or maybe total rebuild would be a more appropriate word) of a '62 Cadillac Series 62 belonging to a private customer, codenamed [color=#00BF00]The Hulk[/color]. The source of our delight, naturally, was the engine bay’s ability to accommodate an engine so large and so powerful that it broke Automation’s “utility calculator”:

[size=85]The comfort rating of 0 is almost solely the fault of the engine… only complete maniacs wouldn’t be wholly uncomfortable in a car with 3094hp…[/size]

And that was after detuning so that the engine actually had decent reliability and wouldn’t run out of gas on the way to the pump! Just what is this car capable of!? Supposing our resident nutjobs survive their test drive, we’ll find out shortly!


#89

Good god. There went my Speed record.


#90

[quote=“strop”]Gryphon Gear is delighted to publicly share a preview of its latest project, an ultra-top-end street-legal bespoke custom refitting (or maybe total rebuild would be a more appropriate word) of a '62 Cadillac Series 62 belonging to a private customer, codenamed [color=#00BF00]The Hulk[/color]. The source of our delight, naturally, was the engine bay’s ability to accommodate an engine so large and so powerful that it broke Automation’s “utility calculator”:

[size=85]The comfort rating of 0 is almost solely the fault of the engine… only complete maniacs wouldn’t be wholly uncomfortable in a car with 3094hp…[/size]

And that was after detuning so that the engine actually had decent reliability and wouldn’t run out of gas on the way to the pump! Just what is this car capable of!? Supposing our resident nutjobs survive their test drive, we’ll find out shortly![/quote]

I’m guessing the seat has to be cleaned after it gets back from a drive.


#91

Good god, 245mm tires? At what speed do the tires stop smoking/the driver go full throttle?


#92

@vosnox: you’d be surprised, due to the way the top speed is locked to Max rpm and tops out at 905@12000rpm, its difficult to get ultra powered cars with a power profile to match. Though yes, I can tell you now, I can get this thing faster than 622.

@elesigma: thus contributing to the discomfort factor no doubt :stuck_out_tongue:

@nialloftara: undoubtedly the biggest problem with this chassis. Due to the closed arches the tyres clip if width goes above 245. Therefore, with any type of compound, the car can and will do a burnout if you floor it in any of its seven gears all the way up to about 500km/h :smiley:


#93

is that MPH?


#94

Sadly no, just km/h. At the pointy end of things, air resistance increases exponentially, so combined with the challenges of the current gearing, it’s not easy to get above 622km/h. But it is possible.

This is a test of the most extreme settings. Any weight not to do with going fast has been removed. The tyre width has been reduced even further to eke out an extra couple of tenths. The chassis has been lightened to the maximum possible, and the engine stroke has been reduced to eke out more rpm so that its redline coincides with the theoretical max speed. All this combines, as you can see, to give a top speed of 624.0 (which, I suppose, would technically make me the new record holder :stuck_out_tongue: ) but on that same token this is also with ventilation of 0 and with the max rpm set to 12000 so the gearing would even make it that far. In no way shape or form would a speed test like this ever actually happen, so it is kind of academic.

However, the story of the actual project itself, I will share with you in the near future!


#95

After a period of joining various challenges, I thought I’d try something a little different today. The following snippet will hopefully give you some idea of what it’s like to work at [color=#FFFF00]Gryphon Gear[/color], as well as introduce to you some of the characters that form the core group of engineers, mechanics and tuners that comprised Gryphon Gear’s original business: bespoke extreme performance modifications and rebuilds. As a bonus, it’s illustrated by both myself and Cen, our art director. And when you do see the pictures, yes, that IS the Gryphon Gear works uniform.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this story are that of the characters, not of the author. No offense is intended.


You Won’t Like It When It Gets Angry

A knock on the door startled Strop from his daydream involving a long winding road and the new mid-engined car he had been sketching. Jerking upright, he almost fell out of his chair, only catching himself at the last minute with a well-placed hoof under the table. He glanced over and saw, through the glass window, the hulking oxen silhouette of Boden.

Knowing full well that Boden was more likely to want to show him something than to look at what he was doing, Strop rose and opened the door. “Boden! What’s up?”

“You remember The Hulk?”

Strop stared at Boden. “Huh?”

“The Hulk. The green '62 Caddy shell that guy asked us to do up.”

It took Strop three blinks before the penny dropped. “Oh yeah! Whatshisface! Yeah, what about it?”

If but for a fraction of a second, Strop almost interpreted Boden’s momentary silence for a skepticism brooding under his shaggy brow, but immediately dismissed the thought, knowing full well that Boden didn’t care that he couldn’t remember any of Gryphon Gear’s bespoke tuning clients or their multi-million dollar jobs.

“We just finished. You wanna see?”

Strop was out the door and clattering down the stairs before Boden was even done motioning with his head. “Of course I do! Let’s go!”

They wound their way past the other cars and parts strewn about the main floor of the warehouse, heading towards the workshops. “By the way, I should probably mention,” Boden mumbled.

“Mention what?”

“We had a small problem.”

Strop frowned, confusion and speculation mounting as to what the unflappable Boden might classify as a ‘problem’. “What kind of problem?”

“The engine was too big.”

Strop felt an icicle run through his chest. He searched Boden’s expression for a clue and found none. “What? If the engine’s too big, then how can the car be done?”

“Oh, it fits. Mostly. We just had to get a little… creative.”

They pulled up in the corridor outside workshop four (Strop didn’t even realise they had that many rooms), where Boden hunched over the tiny keypad, jabbing at it with his fat stubby fingers that should have been too large for the keys, yet by that same token, worked the machines with unbelievable precision. “Maybe best you see for yourself.”

The door slid open and Strop squinted, the halogen glare reflecting off the polished floor, signs of a job completely finished. When Strop’s eyes recovered, he saw the long, imposing block of the green 1962 Cadillac body, its swooping fins grossly extended and roof chopped. The chrome details of the custom side exhaust vents sparkled to perfection. Of greater note, the bonnet had been tubbed out, but even that was not quite enough, and part of it had been strategically cut away to make room for the twin-turbo manifold, which protruded a good five, six inches further. So this was what Boden had warned him about… in this case Strop was not sure it was necessarily a bad thing, after all, the brief had been to make the maddest street machine possible, and a cutaway bonnet certainly did not go amiss. Perhaps not following the brief to the exact letter, but that in itself was surely not too concerning as Strop had a hunch that any customer that came to Gryphon Gear would only be too happy to make small cosmetic allowances for larger engines, and therefore, more power. Was Boden worried about that insignificant detail? Then again, over the classic, blocky lines, Strop saw the other hints of modern touches in the updated tail lights and, under the paintwork, the weave of the…

“Uh, Boden, I thought cars from the 60s didn’t come in carbon fibre.”

“They didn’t.”

“So what did you do with the original body?”

Boden shrugged.

Bemused, Strop continued around the side of The Hulk, where he found the serow brother-sister twins Luca and Isla crouched over the front grille, sawing away with microfibre cloth. “Oh, herro!” Luca (or was it Isla? Strop could never tell when they sported their trademark baggy overalls) chirped, bobbing to his feet. “Just a bit dirty!”

Strop snorted, “You know I don’t mind that!” He attempted to step around Luca to get a better view of the front, only to find that Isla had firmly plastered herself to the grille, working at the chrome bumper as if her life depended on it. “Come on, I wanna see!”

“But we not ready!” Isla bleated, shrinking up against the grille even more.

“Oh don’t be ridiculous, I don’t care about grease stains,” Strop huffed, preparing to pry Isla off the car, only to have Luca intercept him with a panicked “No, prease!”, smearing his grease stained paws all over his t-shirt. “Oh hey, now, getting me dirty is another matter!” Strop protested.

With a single step, Boden interposed before it could get any further out of hand. “Luca, Isla, it’s fine.” The siblings fixed him with a doleful stare, but he shook his head. “I already told him.” At that, they withdrew, paws clutched to their chests and glancing each other in trepidation.

Strop glanced at Boden one more time, before finally turning to inspect the visage. As he suspected, the grille had been heavily modified, the entire front transformed into a horizontally split grille vent more akin to a '62 Chevrolet in order to accommodate the engine’s presumably monstrous cooling requirements. The characteristically Gryphon Gear strip LED headlights had been installed on the periphery, minimising intrusion on the venting while referencing the modern retro look. Strop nodded approvingly, after all, while borne from necessity, it had fast become one of their signature touches. But most obvious, most confronting of all, was the pipe protruding through the middle of the grille. Which ran from a rather large, very exposed intercooler, which was nestled not so much in, as between, the halves of the chrome bumper that had been cut away to make room for it.

Strop blinked several times, gawking at the monstrosity. To one side, Luca and Isla cringed, while to the other, Boden remained impassive. Suddenly, Strop erupted into whinneying laughter.

“Just… what is this… thing packing that you couldn’t fit the intercooler in the bay?” he gasped, still laughing.

“Six hundred and fifty seven cubic inch block,” Boden deadpanned. “And hundred and one millimeter dual custom Billet Turbos.”

“Holy shit,” Strop breathed. Forget Big Block, that was more like Fing Giant Turbo strapped to a Mf**ing Godzilla Block. He straightened, hands on hips, and took another good long look at The Hulk’s disfigured face.

“So… not a probrem?” Isla (or was it Luca?) hazarded.

“No…” Strop giggled, mouth slowly splitting into a grin. “It’s awesome.”


The sonorous rumble of the classic V8 reverberated through the warehouse, staff all craning their heads to peer at the spectacle emanating the buffetting soundwaves. Engine spitting and jerking as it idled rough, The Hulk slunk past the open floor workstations as it made its way to the main doors.

Sitting within the body of the beast, the sound was magnified twofold, as the interior was devoid of all insulation, with the barest of trim over the panels, and the rear seats stripped out to make way for the rollcage. The restored classic dash and oversized leather wheel, kept at the client’s insistence, was the only extra touch, notwithstanding the updated electronics and LED display treatment courtesy of their resident electrician Noah. And the fact that everything had been reupholstered in an eye-jarring rich, electric purple.

From the passenger seat, Strop felt his skull assaulted from all sides, the vibrations shaking him to the core. Even now accustomed as he was to the cars they built, this one was the largest, most powerful, most brutish yet. The dyno run had indicated as much, amidst much whooping and hooting, they watched as the power curve suddenly soared off the charts at the 4000rpm mark, topping out at a power level of OVER THREE THOUSAND… and ninety four horses to be precise. 3094bhp! Surely that had to be some kind of record. Merely repeating that figure under his breath was enough to make his gut churn and his knees go wobbly with anticipation, even esconced securely as he was in the bucket seat and four point harness. And he wasn’t even the one driving. Next to him, their (somewhat) tame racing driver, Kai, strained in his seat to keep his chin high enough to see over the dash.

“This car is too big.” He remarked, barely audible over the din of the engine.

“Do you need your booster seat?” Strop asked him, equal parts serious and facetious. Kai didn’t appreciate either part, his jaw setting that little bit more firmly. “It’s a fat American.”

“Correct!” Strop exclaimed. “Only, it’s a fat American that’s actually good at what it sets out to do.”

“That’s even worse,” Kai muttered.

As they lined up on the company test track, Strop spied three familiar figures in the mirror. He wound down the window to find Noah, Hannah and Tesla chasing them. Noah, having the typically lanky limbs of the maned wolf, caught up first.

“Just before you head off, I thought you should know,” he started.

“Know what?” Strop asked, having a sudden nervous flashback to Boden’s warning shot earlier that day.

“All the electronics are fully operational, wipers, air con, lights and all that.”

“That’s good to know…” Strop started, before being cut off by Noah’s raised finger. “Except one thing.” He pointed his finger at the biggest chrome dial on the central console, behind the sequential shifter. “That.”

“What’s that?”

“That’s the traction control. We haven’t calibrated it yet, so that dial does nothing. Just in case you were thinking of testing that too, of course,” Noah explained, hands up as if afraid he might offend.

“Oh,” Strop casually waved, “That’s fine, I actually wasn’t. Were you Kai?”

“Eh, what’s the point?” Kai shrugged.

At that point Noah was elbowed aside and a panting Hannah and Tesla crammed their heads through the open window. Hannah, being the short and squat shrew, occupied the bottom half, but had to shield her hair from being slimed by the golden retriever’s lolling tongue.

“Don’t forget the tyres aren’t as wide as you’re used to!” Tesla gasped. “They’re only 245s coz of the closed arches!”

“And if you smoke 'em they’re coming out of your salary!” Hannah added, glaring at both Strop and Kai.

“How much is a set?” Strop asked innocently.

“Twenny-five hundred bucks. They’re DOT approved semi-slicks,” said Hannah, hands on hips.

“Oh, what a shame,” Strop sighed, winking at Kai. For once, Kai smirked.

“And you!” Hannah stared more daggers at Kai. “You better not stuff this one, Crash, or we’re shipping you back to Denmark, regardless of what dumbarse here says!” She jabbed Strop squarely in the shoulder for emphasis.

“Oi, get f***ed,” Kai shot back with a practiced Ocker twang and a cocky grin, before planting his foot on the go pedal and letting out the clutch.

In an instant, the rumble turned to a bellow coupled with the unholy shrieking of burning rubber. The rear squatted and the car lurched forward, leaving a giant cloud of tyre smoke in its wake. Coughing and hacking, Hannah and Tesla fought their way out of the smoke as the car tore up the long straight into the distance.

“Ah, shit!” Hannah suddenly bolted upright, pounding a fist into a palm, making Tesla yelp in surprise. “They forgot their helmets!”


Strop would have reached up to cover his ears, that is, if he could raise his arms, but his elbows were firmly crushed into the seat. He figured this must be what it was like to take off in a space shuttle, what with the deafening noise and smoke and that irrepressible acceleration. Next to him, Kai was a mask of grim concentration as he wrestled with the shifter and the throttle, battling constant wheelspin. Strop squirmed inside, trying to shake off the uncomfortable feeling that something was very unusual, before he realised that the scenery was little more than a blur and yet the weight of acceleration was just as strong as it had been when they started. His eyes tracked over, hazarding a look at the speedo, and widened as he saw the numbers skyrocketing. Two hundred and fifty, three hundred, three hundred and fifty, four hundred… hang on, not even the Mephisto had any chance of making it this far. He looked ahead and saw, in the distance, the high extreme bank of the approaching bend, the twin masterpieces of the Gryphon Gear test track that capped each end of the mile-and-a-bit long straights. Designed specifically for the road rockets Gryphon Gear built, with a maximum bank of seventy five degrees at the lip and a diameter of over three hundred meters. Normally that was more than enough for any of their cars to barrel around all out incurring forces akin to a fighter jet pulling a loop, but this time-

“Uh, don’t you think you should slow down?” Strop shouted, hoping Kai would hear him over the din. If he had, he didn’t let on. The height of the bank reared up in their vision as they rapidly approached.

“Kai!?” Strop hazarded one brief glance at the speedo, which now read four hundred and fifty. He clutched at the edges of the seat as the car shot up the ramp onto the bank. “KAIIIIII!”

“Shut up!” was all Kai managed before he jabbed the brake. Their heads slammed forward, the car slowing with alarming force, before Kai pulled on the steering wheel. Strop’s brain went every which direction except upright as the car started the right turn, front wheels skittering and The Hulk teetering towards the guardrail at the edge. Looking out the left window, Strop could see nothing but the clear skies, into which they were dangerously close to launching as the tyres desperately fought for grip at close to four hundred kays. The cabin itself screamed in overtone to the engine and the tyres, as if the chassis was tearing itself apart, that was, until Strop realised that the screaming was merely his own.

For a few tense seconds that stretched out into eternity, the Hulk carved the rim of the banked curve, before dropping back onto the straight. Scarcely had they evened out than Kai slammed on the brakes, knocking the half-breath that Strop had managed back out with an “ooph”. With one hand occupied with the downshifting, Kai’s right hand struggled to turn the steering wheel, feet dancing to the familiar rhythm of toe-heel-clutch-heel and repeat. Once again The Hulk swung right, this time around a much tighter semi-circle with no banking, tyres shrieking all the same as the lumbering two ton car turned with surprisingly little roll or jitter. Back on a short straight, doing maybe eighty, ninety, now the car juddered as the turbo kicked in and pressed them back into their seats again. Barely had Strop counted to three had the car hit two hundred, and the weight was off again, as the car drifted left into a long sickle that slowly tightened. The turbo whistled as the revs dropped off, Kai feathering the brake as he fought to keep the front wheels from locking up while slowing for the tightening left hander. He kept the car short shifted coming out of the bend, but the moment the boost kicked in, over two thousand horses stampeded the wheels, and The Hulk fishtailed wildly.

“Forpulede lort!” Kai muttered, flinging the oversized steering wheel this way and that as he tried to correct while still on the throttle, ever conscious that lifting off in a tank-slapping all-wheel-drive at freeway speeds and above was suicide, but not quite sure just how much throttle he was allowed to apply. In the end, guts prevailed, and he coaxed the lumbering Hulk back onto a straight line under throttle with a collective sigh of relief.

Next was a choice: either a long six hundred meter stretch with a super fast left kink, in a nod to Blanchimont, or a right handed turnoff to a little twisty segment Strop liked to refer to as the Touge Test Track. Strop was fairly sure Kai would not be so inclined to attempt that in The Hulk.

He was correct. The turnoff flashed by, and they charged at Blanchimont Mark Two, punctuated by a tyre barrier blocking the other exit and virtually no runoff. Once again, Strop’s eyes went wide as he eyed the speedo, seeing a four at the front. Thankfully, before he could start screaming again, Kai lifted off and touched the brake, easing the wheel left as firmly yet smoothly as he could. The Hulk angled left, Strop’s spine jarring as the wheels hit the inside kerb, the left of the car lifting off the ground as the tyre wall whizzed by on the right. Winded, Strop struggled to suck in air, only to have it sucked right back out as the wheels hit the ground again with a crash, and Kai hit the brakes, this time hard, furiously downshifting all the while. By the time the pressure came off, they had slowed down to a crawl, and Strop got his first breath in several seconds just in time for Kai to furiously haul the wheel to the left in an attempt to navigate the acutely angled hairpin fashioned by the intermediary road that ran through the middle loop of the testing track.

“Kom så, din fede amerikaner!” Kai shouted, willing the car to turn faster as the tyres protested, but alas, a turning circle could not be shrunk, and the car dipped over the kerb and into the grass as it ran wide. In frustration, Kai hit the throttle too early, smoke flying up on one side and grass on the other, and the car pitched to the right as it picked up speed. Swearing some more, Kai wrestled the wheel left again, jabbing at the brake with his left foot without wholly lifting off with the right in an attempt to coax the car back onto the road again but not provoke it into a spin. Finally succeeding, he sunk his foot back on the throttle with a grunt, not even caring that for the most part, the tyres were spinning and the colossal engine was bouncing off the rev limiter.

The extra S that punctuated the intermediary road neatly in the middle was designed to test car and driver’s ability to navigate the increasing features of modern race tracks, mandated by increasingly fast cars. Yet it seemed inappropriate for a car so stupidly fast and lumbering as The Hulk, such that Strop suspected Kai was tempted to simply barge through. But as it were, the raised kerbs were still in place, and given the car’s reaction to the inside kerb of Blanchimont Mark Two, the car would have turned into a two ton missile and probably detonated upon impact, whereupon Hannah, should they have survived the initial crash, would have definitely finished them off. So Kai hit the brakes once more, shifting from fourth to third to second while wresting the car to the right, before transferring left.

That was where it all started to go wrong. From the understeer wrought by the relatively narrow 245s bearing the brunt of the colossal block and added weight from braking, the sheer momentum being transferred across and the loss of forward thrust slung the rear of the car to the right, and suddenly they were caught in a two ton tankslapper still doing a hundred and twenty, with the kerb fast approaching. Cursing rapidly in Danish, Kai hit the throttle again in an attempt to straighten up and avoid the kerb, but with the turbo kicking in so hard, the wheels spun and lost all traction, enveloping them in a thick cloud of smoke. All the while, Strop was thrown around in his seat as the car spun, then rocked from side to side as it left the road, gradually slowing until it slid to a halt.

For a moment, they sat, blinded and suffocated by the smoke, their pounding hearts the only sound they heard, until Strop realised that meant the engine had stalled. It was only when the smoke finally cleared that he realised they had gone off the track a good forty meters, the deep culverts dug by the wheels evidence of their unintentional excursion.

Kai was out of the car first, wrenching his harness off and fairly punching the door open. “For fanden og ind i helvede!” He yelled, his face a shade of red nearly matching his fiery hair. “A bus will always be a bus!” For good measure, he kicked the wheel, hopping on one foot as he came off second best. “F***ing fat American!”

“Hey man, don’t do that, this thing’s expensive,” Strop admonished as he also clambered out, clearly not soothing Kai’s frustration.

“Whatever.” Kai ripped open the collar of his jumpsuit. “I’m done with this shit.” With that, he started stomping towards the pit lane far in the distance.

“Dude, it’s like a kay and a half back to the office, you sure you don’t want a lift?” Strop called after him.

“I’m good,” Kai yelled back without bothering to turn his head. “Enjoy your saturated fats and corn syrup.”

Concluding that yeah nah, Kai was definitely not coming back, Strop swung around to the driver’s side and strapped himself in. Cracking his knuckles and clenching his fists, he took a few deep breaths. Sure, Kai seemed to have a hard time with the car, but was it really all that undriveable? His prejudices certainly hadn’t helped, after all. After disengaging the gear and resetting the fuel pump, he tried the ignition and the engine thrummed to life once more. An excellent start! Hoof firmly on the clutch, he pulled the shifter and with a thunk the gear engaged, a “1” lighting up on the dash. Now for the business of getting the car back on the road… if he was bogged then it would all be for naught. Taking a deep breath, he blipped the throttle and let the clutch out as slowly as he could manage. The car lurched as the clutch, a rigid, cross-reinforced quad-plate affair, bit hard, power instantly hitting the wheels. After some shaking, The Hulk deigned to lumber out of the grooves it had dug, and back towards the road.

“Okay, doing well, doing well,” Strop breathed as he found himself rolling down the straight again, wrapping his left hand around the shifter. Sequential this may be, but in contrast to most of Gryphon Gear’s previous projects, the clutch pedal was mandatory, as while they had managed an engineering marvel in the dual clutch sequential system of the Mephisto, such things were certainly not possible with a car that pushed more than half as much torque again. So here he was, starting to have serious doubts over his ability to pilot this monster, particularly when he couldn’t heel-toe due to his, uh, anatomy. But he sure as hell was still going to try!

With a resolute grunt, he clutched in, dialled up about six thousand rpm, then dropped the clutch.

Enraged as ever, the car roared and clawed at the ground, wheels spinning all the way through first. A jab of the clutch, a throw of the shifter, and the Hulk gave a mighty lurch before burning up the runway again. Strop did a double take as he mentally checked his hoof’s position: Just how little throttle was he allowed to apply!? Still, the weight he felt pressing him into the seat was as real as ever, and the speedo soared towards two hundred as the intersection approached far too quickly, so he tentatively pressed the brake pedal.

The Hulk had surprisingly well gradated brakes, with a far more user friendly progressive feel than he had expected. Unfortunately, he was still trying to stop nearly two tons of brute force on horribly thin wheels, so with haste he pressed the brake pedal rather harder, shifting down. But as he shifted down, torque surged through the wheels as the transmission forcibly matched the engine revs, and the car started to pull to the left. Swearing under his breath, he tried to correct, but once again the car kicked to the right, throwing itself into a disconcertingly similar slide. Trying to think a step ahead, Strop preemptively tugged the wheel left and blindly jabbed at the throttle, but regardless of what he did, The Hulk wanted to go any way except following the road, and that was that. In another slew of tyre smoke, the Hulk spun end over end as it finally came to rest in the middle of the main straight of the center loop of the test track.

“Bugger me,” Strop muttered, looking around and recollecting his bearings. Somehow, he had the presence of mind to clutch in when the car spun out despite (or maybe because) of his efforts, so the engine was thrumming away in idle, ready to take another few chunks out of the hapless soul who dared provoke it. The bigger question was whether he continue to try and conquer the beast or what. He didn’t even last one corner! In that context, that Kai somehow managed to make it all the way to the chicane when he had never driven it before and couldn’t see shit, was remarkable. Strop sighed, a tight ball of dissatisfaction welling up in his chest. Here he was, sitting in easily the most bonkers car in the world, and everything it could ever be and do was locked away from him.

Well, except one thing.


“That bastard,” Hannah whispered under her breath, binoculars plastered to her face while she leaned on the pit wall.

“Hunh?” Tesla glanced up, her mouth still full of the hat she had been chewing on.

“He’s doing it. I knew that stupid horse was gonna do it.” Hannah put down the binoculars in disgust, and gazed across the course to where The Hulk had vanished, hidden by a giant column of rising smoke, accompanied by the sounds of the colossal V8 bouncing off the rev limiter. “I’m gonna kill him.”

“I thought you were gonna charge him for the tyres,” Tesla joked, before donning her hat again and heading for the pit garage. “That too,” Hannah snapped. “Hey, where are you going?”

“To get the truck!” Tesla called back. “We’re gonna need it.”


Strop whooped, the sound lost amidst the full bore cacophony of tyres shrieking and V8 going wild. Now this was the simple pleasure of life, keeping his hoof mashed firmly on the loud pedal, yanking the steering wheel this every which way and feeling himself flung around like a rag doll in an earthquake while he left circles and whorls and loops of thick black rubber on the tarmac. The Hulk may have been built all wheel drive but with this little traction and that much power, no number of wheel drive was going to stop it from being the ultimate Summernats conquering burnout machine, and it felt good. Letting the wheel go, he felt the car straighten slightly, slithering its way along the edge of the lane, before he flicked it back, drifting sideways as The Hulk carved a parabolic line to the other side of the road. Hauling the wheel the other way, he entered a tight spiral, and the car seemed to turn on the spot, rotating faster and faster-

With a mighty bang, one of the tyres gave up the ghost, and the car started shaking. Strop saw in his mirrors the faint orange flicker reflected in the smoke, and belatedly realised that his rear tyres were on fire. A second later, three more bangs followed in rapid succession, and the car sank down, its infectious rage finally depleted.

Strop hit the brakes and killed the engine, the life sapping out of it with a descending sigh and a gurgle. His ears were ringing, his lungs dry and irritated by the toxic tyre fumes, and his body had felt like it had been thoroughly beaten with a crowbar. The smoke was so thick all he could see was an opaque white mist which seeped through the vents and the door seals, and into the cabin, bathing him in smoky tendrils. Covering his nostrils with the sleeve of his jumpsuit, he opened the door, trying to fan the smoke away but only sucking it in, so he gave up, sat there and waited.

In the distance, he could hear a truck approach and stop, and as the smoke started to clear, he saw Tesla at the wheel, and Hannah emerging from the truck to survey the damage. Strop’s knees were visibly wobbly as he levered himself out of The Smoking Hulk with his arms to face an ashen faced Hannah.

“Our client’s gonna die driving this thing,” he remarked. “But damn that was the best 2500 bucks I’ve blown all year.”


#96

Just spent like half an hour reading some of that, you’re seriously one creative motherfucker.


#97

Every time Strop gets into a car,it gains another 1 horse power


#98

In other news, I spent the rest of the day getting in and out of my car…


#99

When will you crack the 1 million barrier? XD
And i meant, it gains 1hp temporarily until you get out again.


#100

I don’t know about power, but it sure gets a lot noisier.