Fresh from the junkyard.
Toni & Wookiee are out on a bender. They MIGHT wake up with another car…
Aw shit, that’s too soon before my big exam. Hope you run another one in UE4 coz team Flaming Fart Cannon will take another pitch at it, with lighter in one hand and belt loops in the other… and after last time you can only imagine it’s all downhill from there
Bah, education is overrated. Pee into the wind with us!
Oh, and folks, since it’s now happened in 2 submissions… please note that when I say Cargo Loading Factor and Aggressiveness Factor are on a scale of 1-10, I mean integers… those of you who submitted non-integers had your values rounded.
You’ve seen them before, driving a yellow Chinese scrap heap named banana, and now they’re back as…
Team Faux Class
Team Rice Box are back, but under a new Name, Team Faux Class.
Lyra Sunshard A YouTube and Instagram Celebrity in the Gaming world as ShardGaming, she enjoyed he time in the KGT, and has decided to run again, but without the Cameras. She’s 20, and will be doing most of the Driving.
Charlotte Mathews yra’s Childhood friend, and fellow Instagram Celebrity. She Runs a YouTube channel named Girl+Car, where she vlogs car builds, and fixes. She also enjoyed the KGT, and was not in charge of buying the car this time. She’s 20, and will probably be in charge of repairs.
Gemma Sunshard Lyra’s younger sister, she has no YouTube or Instagram status, she’s just here because she wants to have fun. She knows fuck all about cars, but she can at least drive. She’s 18, and will be doing the rest of the Driving.
Gemma and I had been searching all throughout Canada for something, anything worthy of bringing. It took us a week, but we finally came across something… unique to say the least.
1949 OSHL Niea 11
It was an odd machine. The 11 stood for 11 Litres. Yes, this had an 11L V8 from a tank in it. Gemma’s googling found absoluely no information on the Niea. Stuff had come up for OSHL, a French Truck turned Tank turned Truck Manufacturer, but nothing out the Niea. From the car itself, it looks to be an upper class Luxury Vehicle, but who knows. The Engine is from a Tank, a full (near enough) Eleven Litres in size. We know fuck all, and we’re gonna guess Charlotte knows nothing, too.
The Niea is sitting in Lyra’s driveway in front of Banana (That yellow thing from last time. That Banana), and the 3 of them are giving it the once-over.
“How Much?” Charlotte asks
“Just under 500.” Gem replies. Charlotte opens the bonnet, and lets out an audible gasp
“Ly, when you said it’s 10 times bigger than Banana, I didn’t think you’d be right.”
“I rarely lie.” She says, laughing. Charlotte moves around the car, just taking in the sheer size of the Niea.
“Right. I’ll get back to you two tomorrow about any issues, I guess.”
The 2018 Meatball run - Day 2 4PM-7PM
Team Mountain Pass
Turns out that poorly written articles on two incompetent journalists trying to win a shitbox rally really help car magazine sales… So, here for their fourth attempt, team Mountain Pass has reformed for another attempt at junkyard racing glory!
Pierre Mountbatten, 54, is an Australian journalist who founded Mountain Pass, a magazine dedicated to cars that loved hitting the twisty “B” roads over bloated V-max queens and hyper expensive exotics. Pierre is not sanguine about Mountain Pass’s chances of victory but is entering anyway because you have to be in it to win it!
Andrew Morgan, 42, joined Mountain Pass just as Touge in Japan was gaining traction with Western audiences and became their patron saint in the Mountain Pass offices. Andrew is also not overly excited about Team Mountain Pass’s chances of victory but HATES being behind a desk, so he is really glad to be driving anything anywhere!
Kyle Logan, a photographer for Mountain Pass, sourced the '86 model K23i from a drift club forum. Since the early spec K23i had the old, hard to modify and underpowered all iron Alpha turbo four under the bonnet resale values on these cars had plummeted relative to the '88 all alloy DOHC replacement model. This meant that Kyle was able to purchase an abandoned drift project for a measly $499 from a young fellow who didn’t do his research before making a purchase…
Kyle drove the car home where he gave the car a service, checked the brakes and refreshed the gearbox and differential fluids. The wannabe drifter had thankfully not attempted to “modify” the mechanicals but he’d thrashed the car mercilessly as he’d worked as a pizza delivery guy where he’d “practice” his maaad drift skillz…
Thankfully the K23i came up smelling of roses after the service, feeling like new almost, and with only a less than perfect gear shift and loose interior trim betraying the car’s true lifespan. Feeling good about himself, Kyle signed off on the car, filled the fuel tank and stocked it up with the tools, food and emergency camping gear the team would require to successfully prosecute the Last Hurrah…
The 2018 Meatball run - Day 2 4PM-7PM
Well, we may not be entering this time, but here’s a little teaser on what might be coming your way next time…
The hinge of the grate barely squeaked as Kai Kristensen, semi-tame racing driver and nocturnal ferret, slinkied his way out of the ventilation shaft and dropped to the overhanging walkway. Since the upgrade of the CCTV system, it had been much harder to find the blind spots in what was now referred to as the Gryphon Gear Research and Development building (really it was just the original warehouse but a bit tarted up). But that was most of the fun, since he had spent a good three days casing the joint while dodging boring meetings with people in suits. Now instead of simply scaling the drain pipe and popping the window, he had to swing onto the external AC unit, then shimmy his way around the external vent a good ten meters up and enter from the far side. The best part was that he was pretty sure that the Deerector’s motivation for approving the upgrade was to try and catch him out because of the sheer number of detected unauthorised entries but nobody could ever finger him as the culprit even though he knew it was totally him. And so the game continued.
Besides it wasn’t like Kai was doing anything particularly dodgy. All he wanted to do was peek under the covers and stroke the prototypes. And a little light petting never hurt anybody right? And with the expanded engineering and design roster that meant a whole lot more clay mock-ups which now populated the floor where the old tune jobs used to sit. It was car fantasy heaven for a guy whose body corp would only let him keep two cars on his lot, at a stretch.
Kai’s ears pricked. He could have sworn he heard a noise, a surreptitious emission, a hissing of gas squeaking through a tightened orifice. The noise echoed throughout the warehouse, bouncing off the walls, obfuscating its origin, but Kai had his hunches. Creeping through the shadows, he traversed the walkway, pausing at the glass door to the Head Design office, before flinging it open, activating the lights.
Half stooped, frozen with the diabetic-Dad-busted-eating-midnight-cake expression, and holding a tube to his butt complete with cocked tail, was a certain Stroppy McHorseguy, certified Horse Fart Flammenwerfer (and Design Head of Gryphon Gear).
Normally Kai would have, at this juncture, come up with some witty retort that would have had Strop flailing about with his pants around his ankles furiously trying to catch Kai and pummel him into submission. But this was next level stuff.
“Dude, what the fuck.” Was all he could manage, after a protracted horrified silence, which persisted for several seconds more. Then Strop sprang into action, yanking the tube from his butt and pulling his pants up, but not without another telltale pffffft escaping the confines of his nethers. “Okay, that’s it, I’m out.” Kai performed a snappy about-face and marched towards the door.
“Wait! WAIT!” Strop called after him, fumbling with his zip, knowing full well if Kai left without becoming an accomplice, the scandal would somehow find its way to their manager-in-leather, Dan, or worse, that creepy IT weeb guy, Waxwell. “Don’t you want to know why? I promise you it’s genius.”
Genius? Such a word used here was only deserving of mockery but if it made the scandal more juicy, maybe it was worth– Kai folded his arms. “You have until I smell it.”
“That’s the point, I guarantee you won’t.” Now Strop knew he had Kai’s attention, the latter’s slowly morphing eyebrow indicating that the brazenness of his claim was starting to outweigh the sheer idiocy of the scenario. “See this here, is a one way valve, which I’ve fashioned on this plug which leads to this hermetically sealed jar. But that’s not all!” He gestured with the tube, but Kai, having seen where it had just been, naturally recoiled. “As time goes on naturally the pressure in the jar is going to increase, so I actually designed a reservoir air-lock system that allows ongoing compression so that I don’t get fart backwash.”
Kai’s expression was etched into a mixture of bewilderment and anguish. “You’re farting into a jar? But why? And at two in the morning? In your office?”
Strop fidgeted and looked down. “My girlfriend loves me very much,” he mumbled. “But–”
“Okay you know what, forget it, I don’t what to know.” Now slightly nauseated, Kai jabbed a finger at the godforsaken fart storage contraption. “What I do want to know, is what in the everloving fuck inspired you to pull this shit.”
Strop didn’t miss a beat. “Remember our last ride in Toothless?”
Memories of the beloved E120 Corolla shitbox abused far beyond its natural lifespan flooded in and punched Kai in the proverbial gut. How could he forget, those hundreds of furious miles, the involuntary car surfing, the fights over who got to drive, the busted spring, the Viking sendoff, the flaming fart cannon. Then the penny dropped and his eyes lit up. “OHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!”
“YESSSSS YOU GET IT RIGHT?” Strop smacked a fist into his palm. “All I have to do is figure out a way to get this through customs, which is going to be hard because it is literally a biological weapon, but after that, I just have to fill it up and when we’re next on leave, I reverse the one way valve and…”
“Strop you absolute madman, this is disgusting and horrible and our obituaries will probably be really embarrassing and I dibs not ever touching it.” Hands on hips, Kai glared at Strop. “So when are we going?”
y’all better start running
Bahh integers are over rated, had a math professor insist we use real numbers and that integers weren’t real.
Bringing a whole new meaning to your team name, I see…
Ah, the good old Fart-in-a-Jar. Guaranteed to blow your mind and ruin your sense of smell.
Depending on how much fart Strop packs in the jar it could be anything from a grenade to a nuke.
@VicVictory nah really just living up to the original
Saw this on my Facebook…
Yeah, going to maybe look into it more.
The original Roulette Runner was loosely based off of that. The other ones were moved on-road but turned into longer events.
A little personal background on the Gambler 500… I was originally slated to do the one in Washington State last summer in a ratty '90 Buick Lesabre coupe, but I had a medical issue and couldn’t go. This year I’m aiming for the British Columbia one in late May, and will have an '00 Subaru Outback (and be acting as part of the recovery crew, since my car is “too nice” despite having over 200k miles)
This is Pit Stop US with the crew…
Nathan - Age = Barely 30 years old. Has a knack for fixing electronics, but never actually makes stuff work better.
James - Slightly large and probably in charge. Age = Early 40s. Worked as a mechanic in the UK for a few years. Good at wiring stuffs.
Charles - Older, Wiser, but not-quite the mentor. Age = Um, old as dirt. (mid 50s) Generally the sensible one, not easily angered.
Pit Stop US is a “semi-professional” Youtube show (sort of the combination of Roadkill and Top Gear UK.)
[Yes, there will be a camera van following the trio, but the camera guys are strictly there to film, they will not interfere, nor help out in any way.]
One Last Hurrah Part 0
Editor’s Note: Since the last cross-country episode [47 was it?] was a total bust, the trio decided to participate again in the next event the organization held. The theme was a “fun car” and Charles was given the task to find the perfect fun car for the trio to road-trip this time around.
“So, why are we out here?” asked Nathan, as they got out of the cramped cab Charles’ old truck.
“I knew this geezer… we go way back,” replied Charles, “and he has the car I want for the right price.”
“Oh, dear,” comments James, “If he’s an old geezer to you, than how old is he exactly?”
Charles replies, “Oh, not too old… just a little north of 70…”
The cameras can feel the internal eye-rolling of James and Nathan. They reach a dusty old farmhouse with an insanely large lot of junk, including many cars, behind it. A small, fragile looking man comes out of the front door wielding a well worn cane in one hand and spark plugs in the other.
“Charles! It’s been a while! How’ya been?” the old man exclaims, laughing with excitement. He hugs Charles in his greeting. “Ya know, I wasa looking at that car ya’ra wantin… Itss gotta be a goon!”
Charles replies, “Martin! It’s good to see ya! Ya know… we blew up that’ol piece of shite pointy car a while back!”
Charles and Martin do some catching up as they walk over to the detached 2-car garage, James and Nathan following along quietly, almost admiring the deep friendship between Charles and Martin. They got into the garage to find an El Govnor MK II Wagon… A grimey, sun-faded, dinged up, and dust-covered wagon. The interior had seen better days, and the body, while appearing rust-free, was far from pristine.
“Wait! Hold on here!” interrupted Nathan, “Charles you were asked to find a cheap ‘fun car’, but instead you got a BOAT?!?!?!”
“Yeeaaap! Best fun I ever had was in one of these wagons back in the day!” Exclaims Charles, unfazed by the accusation. “This one’s somehow got the big block straight from the factory, and it’s easy to drive with a 3 speed auto!” He kept going on, bouncing talk about the car off Martin as well.
“We’re doomed,” said James, shaking his head.
“We should probably pack some more tools and spare parts for this one,” suggested Nathan.
“That’s a good call,” replied James.
“So, I… wasa gettin her reade for ya,” continued Martin, “and I coudn’t geter to start, so I thought i’da pull te ol two barr carb cuzit was probably jammed lika mark twoo sten. I was right. Sos, I took et apart to see if I could get the butterflees free, but it wasa weld’d by rust. So, I tooka looksie around to see if I could fine me a replacemeeent carb. And I founda foor-barrl carb en intake insted. It work’d first try!”
“Nice work!” said Charles.
“Oooh, I just remem’d I wanted to get de joints lub’d up!” Exclaimed Martin, as he scrambles about the garage looking for them. “I swears they were here yesterday!”
After it was clear Martin was not finding the grease gun, the team started searching with him. They searched up and down the garage, and out into the junk lot for almost 2 hours before they called it quits.
“We’re never going to find a grease gun out here,” said Nathan.
“Nope,” replied James, “So, onward we go then…”
They got the El Govnor wagon loaded up with the tools and supplies brought over in Charles’ truck, and decided to head out first thing in the morning.
1977 El Govnor MK II Wagon produced by American Eagle Automotive (AEA)
455ci Big Block V8
rated at 200hp
Lots of low RPM Torque (peak’s like 1900rpm)
Got some random 4bbl and intake from another 455.
3 speed auto on the column
Open rear differential, some “economy” grade tires
Cushy suspension of some sort (probably even more cushy due to the age)
Awsome, I was wondering if it was an inspiration for your series. Ill be in Moab seeing how long my Jeep holds out about that time, so we will both be probably turning wrenches and scabbing vehicles together in the dirt at about the same time.
(After spending more hours than I want to admit on my first car I exported it and was ready to send it I noticed the KEE word (punintended) in the heading… and the title of the event made sense… and I built my car in UE4 “facepalm” )
Råger Snøytbråten - 31 years old, Råger is a gentle man from inner Brumunddal in Norway, that loves to fiddle around with old stuff that noone wants anymore, especially old computers and original transformer figurines. Fix 'em up and sell them for a nice profit is his motto, always snooping around junkyards for the next find. Always brings his camera along in case he sees something interesting. Has an old beetle that he’s been restoring for the last seven years that still isn’t finished, but it’s getting there. Can get hung up on the small details, but usually get’s the job done.
Børre Løfblad - 33 Years old, Børre is a quick-to-speak and quicker-to-regret-it engineer from Oslo always looking for his next adrenaline fix. Goes hunting when it is allowed and hiking with camping in the mountains when it’s not. Rides motorbikes in the summer and anything RWD without electronic help in the winter, to ruin the drifts. His driving style is more exuberant than efficient, but certainly entertaining to watch. Bored in everyday life, he has tasked Råger with finding a car for this adventure. Has known Råger for 25 years.
Børre and Råger walking towards the garage at Rågers farm.
B: “I’m excited to see what you got for us for this adventure Råger! I hope it’s somthing with some grunt, some umph, something that instills dread to our competitors!”
R: “Well, it is definitely not something they expect, and the sound is quite spectacular”
B: “Good a proper soundtrack is half the experience. I’m really looking forward to this man, I can’t wait for it to begin.”
Råger grabs the garage door and opens it with a grand gesture.
Børre looks quite confounded
B: “It’s… It’s…”
R: “Whaddya think?”
B: “… … It’s TINY! Råger, what the hell is this man?? I mean, c’mon, you’re not serious now are you?”
R: “I think it is rather good, this ABR Sprix. It’s not that small?”
B: "It is the size of a SHOE BOX! FOR CHILDREN! It looks like a toy car from a McDonalds Happy Meal. And a convertible?? This event is happening in spring you know? And I am not a hairdresser. "
R: “Don’t worry, I bought blankets… and caps! It will be just like Roadkill, and I know you love that show Børre.”
B: “I love to watch it on Youtube… Fine! But what’s up with the wobbly panels and small dents all over?”
R: “Well, that’s part of why I got it cheap. A shop in the neighbouring county had it in for regular service and the apprentice was going to test drive it. Turns out he wanted to practice for an upcoming rally in Finnskogen but forgot it was FWD and ended up rolling the car into a field that had just been sprayed with manure by the farmer. The customer didn’t want it back, so I got it for 200 and banged out the dents myself. The A columns are really sturdy and the damage is mostly cosmetic, except for the convertible roof being a bit wonky now and opening at random times. And the throttle got stuck when he rolled so the regular engine blew up. And the wheels were garbage. And the suspension. And the interior got soaked in manure in the field so that was trash. But other than that it is in great shape.”
Børre is standing there with an increasingly longer face for each statement.
B: “So you’re saying we got the shell of a, quite literally, shitty car and that’s pretty much it?”
R: “Well, I did have the odd this and that laying about so after a powerwash i started putting it back together. Take a look
around and see what you think.”
B: “Well, I see you got the wheels aligned with that jig of yours, which is a bonus. Looks like you pulled the suspension out of another tiny car, aftermarket and somewhat lowered or sporty. Quite big wheels for such a tiny car tho.”
R: “Yup, but you work with what you got right. And the tyres were in an odd size never picked up by the customer, so i traded them for an old fax machine at the local tyreshop”
B opening the passenger door, and the convertible roof folds down with a snap:
“Wonky indeed. Well, the seats looks rather nice, and I see we even got the CD player from my first car in this thing. That brings back memories doesn’t it?”
R: “Thought you’d like that touch. Got the same speakers in as well, so we will definitely have some entertainment for the trip.”
Børre pops the hood and walks to the front. After fiddling with the hatch for a minute it opens with a squeak.
B: “And here I thought the car was the small part. Råger, are you making fun of me? I cant even see the engine, just the airfilterbox and a turbo the size of my wristwatch!”
R: “Well, as I said, the old 1 litre engine blew up and had to be replaced, and I had this one left over from the FunKart project we started a few yours ago if you remember…?”
B: “You finally got all the parts for that engine? And you put it into THIS??? Holy mackerel, that explains a few things, but you’ve been sourcing parts for this engine for years. And it isnt really a cheap engine tho, is it?”
R: “Well, technically I actually havent’ payed anything for the engine, just traded parts with some of the things I’ve found here and there and refurbished. The only cost has been shipping parts back and forth, e.g. I got the heads for an old snowplough, and the turbo for a complete set of football cards… There is a reason it took so many years to get everything you know.”
B: “I’m speechless… And that doesn’t happen very often you know?”
R: " I know. Well, this little 600cc is now running a “modest” boost and redlines at about 8500 rpm. Wanna take her for a ride?"
As they get in and fire up the engine a couple of things become blatantly apparent.
B Speaking rather loud: “It is not a quiet or subtle car thing now is it?”
R equally loud: “That is true, luckily I brought these fighter pilot headsets, got them cheap from an old neighbour who was a pilot”
They set of for a test drive in a plume of dust in the hillside of Brumunddal.
(The Garage at Luigi’s house)
Luigi: Shit! This was a bit worse than I thought.
Marc: Could’ve gone worse, the car could’ve rolled, plummeted into a ditch, at least it’s still driveable.
Luigi: Yeah, but this B Pillar is going to be a bitch. A pity we’re such a small city, otherwise we could use some better tools for this.
Marc: Better tools?
Luigi: The LAPD had so many of these things that they got a frame straightener specifically for the Enforcer.
Marc: Damn. How are we going to do this without?
Luigi: Hand me that chain on the wall.
(Marc hands Luigi the chain, Luigi then wraps one end around the B pillar, and fixes the other end to the trailer hitch on Marc’s Seneca*)
Luigi: Okay, get in, put it in four low and in first.
Luigi: Let off the brake slowly, try not to jerk it.
(The Seneca tugs against the B pillar on the Enforcer pulling it somewhat to the side but not enough to risk rollover)
Luigi: I wish Blake were here, his Stag would be much better for this. Give it some gas!
Luigi: Easy! Easy!
(The Seneca jerks forward a bit tugging against the Enforcer, however the B pillar starts to pull out a bit)
Luigi: Okay, ease down. Back up an inch, I’m taking this chain off.
Marc: How’d it do?
Luigi: Not good enough, I’m gonna have to put some heat on it.
Marc: Where is Blake anyway? Shouldn’t he be helping you with this?
Luigi: He’s off giving driving lessons to his daughter.
Marc: I thought she was nineteen.
Luigi: No, the youngest.
Marc: Oh, right.
(A parking lot)
Blake: Okay, review. What does a yellow light mean?
Sally: Floor it!
Blake: Very good. What does a red light mean?
Sally: Look both ways to make sure it’s safe, then floor it!
Blake: Good. What does a yield sign mean?
Sally: Nothing to a Worden.
Blake: I’m proud of you. Okay, two motorists come to an intersection at the same time, who has the right of way?
Sally: The person on the right.
Blake: Wrong! The guy in the big truck.
Sally: The manual says the vehicle on the right has the right of way.
Blake: The cemeteries say the bigger truck has the right of way.
Sally: Point taken.
Blake: I think you’re ready for your test, just remember what I told you about Road Rage.
Sally: “It’s not Road Rage until you get out of the car.”
Blake: (sniff) I can’t believe my little girl is going for her driving test tomorrow.
(Petoskey Motors ZLC Headquarters)
Ted: So it’s a 3000 mile drive in a shitbox?
Ted: And you’re taking a car that has been through three of these?
Zach: What can I say? My dad and the others are really attached to it. I can’t say I blame them, it is a beast.
Ted: Not really much of a money maker for the company in the later years.
Zach: Hold on a minute, look at these spreadsheets.
Ted: What about them?
Zach: These figures. They don’t match up. Let me pull this up… There, look at that.
Ted: Administrative Surcharge?
Zach: I found them on every transaction, all kept on the down low. A few pennies here and there but for every car sale, every dealership service, every accessory sold. I think Mr. Dunbar should look at this.
Ted: You think it’s that serious?
Zach: Look at these figures. I can pretty much trace where all this money is going, except these “Administrative Surcharges” If you ask me, something is going on.
To be continued…
Apologies in advance for the length. Quite a bit in this one as there’s a bit of set-up for future events, and so that others know what Luke looks like, in a round-about way. Plus, the mention of one of the many problems the Truckling has, in the form of an oil leak they can’t find.
“That’s not good.” Amy said, seeing Luke staggering back from the assembly line and promptly falling over.
“I’ll be fine. Not the first time I’ve been hit by the automated assembly robots.” Luke responded, getting back to his feet.
“True, but it is the first time you’ve been hit by a truck door traveling at high speed. You’re sure you’re fine?”
“Yeah. Probably ruined the mask, but it’s not the first time I’ve gone out without it.” Luke said, before carefully removing the latex mask from his head, revealing his usual Twilight Blue paint.
“Ooh. You’ve got a bit of a dent up there.” Amy said, handing Luke a nearby truck mirror, who grabbed it and took a look.
“Well, that’s… unpleasant, but far from critical.”
Jake and Cody arrived a few hours later, wanting to help get their Truckling in the best shape they could manage. Jake had gotten the text from his mother, warning him to notify Cody that the ‘kind old man’ from yesterday was actually Luke Light, and a robot.
“So, Cody, remember when I told you Luke wasn’t exactly what he seemed?” Jake asked, giving a light grin.
“Yeah, you did. Not often you see an old guy interested in junk runs, let alone one who runs his own car company. But then again, when the old man’s not quite, you know, human, that helps.” Cody replied, chuckling.
“Dude, everyone knows. The amount of times he’s been on TV without that mask of his, you think I wouldn’t know what to look for? I knew the instant he had that magnetic clipboard stick to his hand. Doesn’t take long to realize that there’s very few people in this world who have all five fingers on their hand and can still stick magnets to it. Takes even less time to realize it’s Luke when you consider he’s still wearing that wrist-mounted computer thing.”
“I don’t wear it, it’s part of me.” Luke said. “It’s a diagnostic terminal and an Input/Output breakout box, with a 640 by 480 pixel resistive touch-screen and a slide-out keyboard. Only the finest of early 2000’s tech.”
Cody snapped around to look at Luke, who had managed by that time to replace the dented panel on his head with a spare, and apparently had spent the rest of that time… decorating it.
“Nice hair. Very metal, dude.” Cody said, admiring Luke’s new rock-star mane of thin brass chains. “Any practical purpose?”
“Besides covering up paint scratches and a dent? No. Mostly decoration. Something different because I don’t have a week to let more latex cure.”
Amy stuck her head around the corner, then sighed. “Damn it. I was hoping the two of you would discourage him from going out there like this. It’s bad enough that he looks like an Iron Man suit wearing a Pip-Boy, now he’s welded a ton of brass chains to his head.”
“Nah, it’s cool, Mom. Think about it, he’s 18. Consider it a late-stage of teenage rebellion.” Jake said, grinning. “Anyway, how’s the car-truck-thing doing?”
“It’s got an oil leak I can’t find. And it blows smoke.” Amy replied.
“And neither of those are problems we haven’t dealt with before.” Luke said. “Oil leak is like a transmission fluid leak, you keep topping it up and keep an eye on it. And smoke is just oil burning in the cylinders. It’s not a problem until it gets bad.”
“How is Luke at driving stick?” Cody asked.
“I can double-clutch faster than you can shift.” Luke replied. “And that’s not bragging, merely a fact.”
“Good, because I still have a lot to learn.” Jake said. “I mean, I’ve gotten better since the lime-green-shit-machine, but, well, I’m still not good at it.”
“Perhaps, Amy, we should give Jake the keys to one of the Mambas and let him loose on the test track?” Luke asked.
“No! God, no, that’s way too much car for him to handle. If you’re going to do something stupid like that, give him the keys to a '96 Knight, at least he won’t wreck a high-priced hyper-car.” Amy replied.
The day before they had to leave, the team was busy loading up the little Ishu Truckling’s bed.
“Checklist, please?” Amy asked.
Luke nodded, then said, “We have oil, spark plugs, throttle body gaskets, a set of throttle bodies, a spare ECU, a pair of full size spare tires, transmission fluid, coolant, and an entire box of brake parts. We also have a cooler full of dry ice and burgers, a hot-plate, assorted pots and pans, a case of soda, three cans of energy drinks, and… This is curious. Why are there four packs of Kosher hot-dogs?”
“Well…” Jake started, only for Cody to finish the sentence with, “Let’s just say that we’re making amends for the two members of our team that aren’t coming with us. Trevor, brilliant as he is at finding cars to sell, is a bit of a klepto. Stole a lot of food from the other teams, and, well, we’re at least repaying the Outriders. Only ones we could think of that’d have those.”
“So, expect trouble?” Luke asked.
“Probably. Just, um… Please don’t do anything too bad back to them, Luke.” Jake said.
“I don’t have much of a sense of humor, but, as long as their revenge doesn’t damage our car, I’ll get through it.” Luke said.
“So, how’s most of this going to go down?” Cody asked.
“Luke will do most of the driving, though I’ll step in when needed. The two of you have experience in other matters, and will know when to step in and help. Which means Luke gets the driver’s seat and I’m calling shotgun, so you two are stuck with the rear bench seat.” Amy said.
“Aw, man. I’m gonna be hitting my head on the window the whole time.” Cody whined.
“Don’t break it, or I’ll make you ride as a hood ornament.” Luke said.
“Please tell me he’s joking. He’s joking, right?”
Team Redneck Preliminary
Jake is reading his messages on his phone, Otis is running a tractor feeding the cattle on a section down the road. Jake hoots when he reads the one about the new competition that they have been invited to participate in. He jumps on the riding mower and fires up the V-Twin and roars down the road doing nearly 90 mph in the straights. When he pulls up to his dads tractor Otis is visibly angry.
Otis, “JAKE DAMNNIT IF THE SHERIFF CATCHES YOU DRIVING AGAIN YOU AIN’T NEVER GOING TO SEE YOUR LICENSE AGAIN, ESPECIALLY IF YOUR DRIVING LIKE THAT”
Jake looks sheepish briefly forgetting why he was rushing over… “Dad we got an invite to another run”
Otis, “Well shit son why didn’t you call”
Jake looks sheepish again.
Otis, “Well you better load that thing onto the trailer, while I finish feeding, then we will make a list of what all we need to get loaded up. How long do we got?”
Jake, “Bout a week”
Later that evening they go over the truck, change all of the fluids while checking all of the magnetic drain plugs for excessive fuzz. They are part way into filling the transmission when the Sheriff pulls up to the barn.
Sheriff, “Hey Otis, Jake”
Otis, “Hows it goin”
Sheriff, “Doin Ok, hear the boy’s been driving reckless again”
Otis, “That so”
Sheriff, “Yeah, left near 60 feet of skid marks on Coyote road with that damn mower of yours. Scared the crap out of old lady Henderson too.”
Otis, “Boy got a bit excited and rushed over to tell me about us getting an invite to a competition out of state.”
Sheriff, “He couldn’t call ya, you know with that new fangled gadget called a cel-u-lar teel-eh-phone,” glares at Jake, “you kids are always playing with.”
Jake looks sheepish again.
Otis, “Like I said he got excited, plum forgot he wasn’t aloud to drive, and about the phone in his hand. Come to think about it would it be possible to let him have his license back for a week while we are out of state? He would be with me the whole time.”
Sheriff, “Hmmm, tell you what, he gets it back for the week, add one month to his suspension, he doesn’t drive in the county.”
Sheriff, “I’ll tell old lady Henderson you boys will be out of town, maybe she won’t bother me for a week.”
Otis, “Yeah sure, she will find someone else to bother you about”
The Sheriff chuckles, “Yeah, pick up the license on your way out of town”
That Saturday they head up to the local junk yards to find an new to them spare engine, it take most of the day to find one, after checking the vin numbers to find one that was running when it was brought in and didn’t look like it had been damaged. They spend the next day loading up the truck with all sorts of tools parts camping gear and food.
The plot thickens…
Participants have started receiving email (and in some cases, snail mail) notifications of a new competition. It seems that this one is longer than before, and over 3,000 miles. And this time, it spans two countries.
the starting point?
Not far outside of Quebec City, QC, Canada. And the hosts made it clear that the endpoint is somewhere in the United States. In the Deep South. In between, great waterways of the two nations. And a LOT of miles.
It may well be balls-ass cold and snowing at the start, and blistering hot at the finish.
Who will be able to make it all the way?