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One Last Hurrah [FINAL RESULTS]


#41

TEAM OUTRIDERS

Prologue:

(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.

Marc: Right.

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!

Marc: Right.

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?

Zach: Yup.

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…


#42

Team V6 Vandals

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.


CLANG!

“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.

“You knew?”

“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?”


#43

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.”

Jake, “DEAL!”

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.


#44

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?


#45

Bzzt Bzzt
“Hey.”
“Hey. Get your sister and come down to the shop. Found some stuff.”
“Alright. We’ll be down in 20.”


Team Faux Class

Lyra and Gemma arrive at Charlotte’s Boyfriend’s Mechanics Shop, and see the Niea 11 up on the lift.
“What’d you find?” Gemma asked.
“Two things. One might not be an issue, though,” Charlotte replied “Firstly, as you can see, Rust holes. Welded in a Steel plate in the trunk to keep our shit in place.”
“And what’s the other issue?” Lyra asked this time.
“Well, one you probably heard driving it to my place. Engine likes to rattle, like ball bearings in a jar, or something.”
“I just thought that’s what old engines sounded like.” Charlotte and Lyra poke around more with the car, kinda accidentally making some body holes bigger. Gemma eventually pipes up, with some news.
“Guess what, this one’s starting just outside of Quebec City!”
“Wait, really?” Charlotte and Lyra reply at almost the same time
“Yep, so less distance driving there, but…”
“But what?”
“The race is over 3000 miles, and ends somewhere in southern US.” They all sigh, thinking about the hell they’re all about to endure.


#46

THE BACKSTORY

A team of failed university graduates found themselves with a reasonable budget, but with no car and no point in life. This is when they turned to car restoration. One such of these cars is the Land Roamer Discoveree, An abandoned car in a scrapheap, showing great signs of past adventures that had long gone. The rustbucket was brought for a little over £500. They thought that they had got a bargain, until they realised the engine had been taken out after they towed it home.

So, they set to work searching for the perfect engine to complement a true workhorse, this is when they came across the engine from a 2007 V8 Vantage engine from Aston Martin.

After fitting and restoring this monster machine they took it out for a spin, and it was only then that they realised that his was not just an offroad king, but also a true racer.

The team began to think, this ‘thing’ would get destroyed on the track, This is when they came across a competition called ‘One Last Hurrah’…

The Team

Corey Shird - The driver, only got his licence last year, says ‘it is the best thing that has happened to me’, has no life
Luke Prior - The geek, knows the ins and outs of any machine, your mind included
Sajed Gnedi - The strategist, has things going on in his head that nobody will ever understand
Lola the Dog - The Motivational support, needs occasional maintenance but keeps everyone happy

The Car

1982 Land Roamer Discoveree/Aston Martin Vantage/Bolero 4x4

What happens when you cross a Land Roamer Discoveree with a V8 Vantage engine?
The Bolero 4x4, a custom made monster which is a perfect all rounder for this competition!

Built for offroading, but modified for cross-country racing, and the economy is rather good considering its from an Aston Martin, and its modest weight and prebuilt ‘dog kennel’, you cant go wrong!

Present Day

Sajed - is this supposed to be hanging off like this?
Luke - God no, do you know what’s that is?
Sajed - I’m the brains, not the hands.
Luke - that is the intercooler!
Sajed - I guess that’s makes the car look cool?
Corey - what the hell are you two on about, either way I got the briefing.
(Everyone gets really serious)
Corey - Well, we don’t know de wae exactly, but we are starting in Quebec and we are off to the Deep South, maybe New Mexico or Texas. This leads me to think that an off-road car would be best, we need to hurry up fix that cooler thingy…
Luke - (interrupts) the intercooler
Sajed - but why do we want to make it cool?

Corey - Oh god…


#47

Mopey (on phone): Gran, I’ve had an email…we start in Canada!.. No, we don’t need granddad’s shotgun, elephant gun or his harpoon…Yes, I’m sure. 3,000 miles…yeah, twice the distance…Spanners reckons the HiWay will easily make it…No, I will not call him David…anyway Spanners tried to deactivate the cruise control but the car wouldn’t start afterwards so it’s back in its original state. OK see you soon.

Spanners: You didn’t ask about my visa!!!

Mopey: You didn’t get charged so it doesn’t matter.

Spanners: You sure?

Mopey: Did you go in front of a judge?

Spanners: No.

Mopey: Did you get a caution?

Spanners: No, just a 48 hour stay to “help me think over my recent life choices”.

Mopey: Well you’re fine then. Anyway, why are you so eager to go? You were less than happy when you had to go last time.

Spanners: I enjoyed the journey last time and I’ve never been to Canada. I’ve bought a stack of freeze-dried rations so we’ll have lots of food that takes up very little space.

Mopey: What does it taste like?

Spanners: Well it’s a cheap brand…so it tastes like…erm…it tastes better than starvation. In fact you could look at it until you don’t feel hungry any more.

Mopey: Like dwarf bread then?

Spanners: Huh?

Mopey: Dwarf bread…Discworld…Terry Pratchett?

Spanners: Disc what? Terry who?

Mopey: Nevermind (under breath) ya fekkin’ heathen!

Spanners: Whatever, here’s a list of stuff I need to you go and get.


#48

Team “Mushroom Cloud” Operational HQ (Also known as Toni’s Shed)
She was house-sitting in Ottawa… convenient,no?
Exactly 3 weeks before today

Toni: Oooh, my head. I don’t think I should’ve had that las…hic… last one.
Wookiee: “You’ll be fine.” (Trips over the rando sleeping on the floor). “OI!”

Bill is too busy hurling into a bucket to have anything to say.
Plus 3 hours, much bacon and a home-brew or 2 each

Bill: “I still don’t know why that car is here. It looks like crap.”
Toni: "Did you have any cash last night? I think I saw you give some to… what was that guy’s name? "
Bill checks his wallet to find 275 missing. “Oh, man! Please, tell me I didn’t buy it.”
Wookiee: “Ha, Sucker! Jimmy got you! Wait, where’s MY wallet?”
Toni: “On the bar.”
Wookiee checks to find he’s missing 200, and a note saying YOU STILL OWE ME 20. “Shit, bro!”

They find the transfer papers all signed, up behind the passengers sun-visor. They are the “proud” owners of a 92 Godhap & Whent Wallis 2500. A quick inspection reveals:
No ignition lock… it’ll start with a butter knife.
4 mismatched tyres, at least the left two are roadworthy.
The front passenger seat belt is missing… as is the radio
There’s no battery… who sells a car and then takes the battery?!

But wait, what’s this…It’s got a 4G32 under the bonnet… and, is that a turbo?

Presenting… The Ticking Time Bomb of Team Mushroom Cloud
x


#49

Team X/2000

So, its the run for the celebrating of a passing away of the famous KEE car design engine. Nothing so important for the son of a car designer Iman Kent. Iman Kent is waiting for the moment where he will enjoy his break away from school.

Iman Kent , 19, has always been a boring person at school,but atleast he gets good grades and good conduct.

Back to the story, Iman Kent wanted to try camping. But his father, Karmmen Fabian has other ideas. Karmmen has always wanted to go on a road trip with other people in his life.

Karmmen Fabian ,41, was always a wonder-and-ponder person. He always dreamed of the perfect road trip.

Iman: So, let me get this straight.You want me to go on a road trip with you in a project car?
Karmmen: Yes,I want us to bond together in a creative way.
Iman: Dont you think this would be dangerous?
Karmmen: Relaaaaaaaax! With my years of experience, we can make a wonderful car.
Iman: . . . . . . . . . . Fine! As long as i get something in return.
Karmmen: sheesh! can’t a father get a little love from his son.
Iman blushes
Iman: Stop dad! it feels weird.

3 months later

After months of sourcing parts for the project car and building it, it has come to life.

Fabian X/2000




The engine was an unknown 2.8L turbocharged I6, which was originally N/A but with the turbo it produced 292hp.

The body was an older kitcar model which was unnamed, which was weird considering how it was registered.

All the parts that were required to be assembled came with it, so everything was going in schedule and organized.


Iman: So dad,Why are you planning to do this run?
Karmmen: Well, really how do i put this…
Iman: What is it dad?
Karmmen: Well, i always wanted to run my company in the past. I knew i wanted to make my own cars and make money. But alas, financial issues have shot down my dreams like a gun.
Iman: So why do you still pursue it?
Karmmen: Because i know that one day, i will be known not as an ordinary man but someone who contributed to the world and i need a supporter who can help me finance this whole project.
Iman: . . . . . . . . . Dad
Karmmen: What?
Iman: I support all your plans and decisions. I want to help you so badly, I know you have so much potential to be one of the greats and I know you wont let me down.
Karmmen: Really?.. Son, I know you can’t help now. But if you really want to help me so badly, I will make you my co-creator of the company.
Iman: Thats great.
Karmmen: Now lets get to work, son.

And the mood was set, now everything was set for what will be the fate of a father and son in this grueling 3000 mile journey. Stay Tuned for more.....


#50

Day 1 of Preparation

The Lincolnshire Yellowbellies set out on preparing the Bolero 4x4 for the competition.

Corey - So, assuming that Canada is going to be snowy, we need to pack snow equipment such a small shovels for when we get stuck, and snow chains for the wheels…
Sajed - Do we need ski’s?
Corey - No Saj, we don’t have time for stuff like that
Sajed - oh… (clearly disappointed)
Luke - So how are we going to deal with food?
Corey - well, assuming we don’t break down or get lost we need food for 3000 miles, a trip an average speed of 50 mph , we need… 60 hours worth of driving so we need to stop roughly 3 times , so 3 days of food.
Luke - that’s a lot
Sajed - especially with corey here

A few hours pass and all the food is packed, including a literal feast for Lola the dog. Corey has gone out to get a spare wheel and come see back instead with a crate of beer. The men get hammered, and attempt to work on the rover at midnight. Find out what happens to the truck tomorrow morning


#51

OLH Day -2, Melbourne Australia

Team Mountain Pass Bio

A nondescript office, Fitzroy, Melbourne, 09:00 AEST

After spending a few days leisurely packing for the trip to the USA, Pierre was sitting at his desk, drinking coffee. Pierre liked to relax before flying anywhere as he had a secret fear of flying and, therefore, he needed time to prep for the aluminium coffin ride in his near future. Just as he’d finished watching a weird 1940’s car design competition video on Youtube, Pierre was startled by the phone ringing; no-one rang him before lunch, ever!

P: “Uhhh, hello? Pierre speaking”

A: “Hey Pierre! It’s me, Andy! Get your shit together man, we gotta catch a plane in like, 2 hours!!!”

Pierre tried to reply but only an unintelligible grunt, followed by a spluttered cough, was able to leave his lips. Two hours!!! It takes at least that long to get through all the security!!! Pierre’s heart beat faster, what had gone wrong?

A: “Get a grip man! drink some more of that godawful coffee you like so much and meet me in the lobby ASAP and I’ll explain on the way!”

Pierre mumbled his assent, hung up the phone, wolfed down his coffee, grabbed his go bag and ran to the lift, stabbing the down button several times in his haste to get moving…

DING!!! The elevator doors opened and Pierre jumped inside (thankfully the elevator was empty) and force closed the doors with the appropriate button…

Cheery elevator music

Upon reaching the lobby, Pierre found Andrew and they rushed outside where Andy’s S12 Gazelle was sitting, idling, with an intern jammed in the back with their luggage.

A: “Get in!!!”

P: “What’s the intern for?”

A: “Really!?! With all that’s happening right now, you wanna know about the intern???”

P: “Well yeah, he doesn’t look very comfy back there…”

Some muted groans from the back seat may or may not have sounded like “It’s cool, there’s heaps of room back here!”

A: “Don’t worry about him, he’s taking my car back from the airport; parking is too damn expensive otherwise!”

P: “Fair enough, so what’s with the rush? Did you get the date wrong or something?”

Andrew is ducking and weaving through the traffic, barely making progress because Aussie spec S12’s are shit.

A: “Kyle contacted me yesterday, the start location for this race is in Quebec, Canada and is gonna, most likely, end in New Orleans! We have to catch an earlier flight because, to get it really cheap, we have to go via lots of carriers…”

P: “Oh no, what have you done! These airlines aren’t very safe, are they?”

A: “Depends on what you call safe… I’m not worried, personally, but they might have different rules than the usual carriers…”

P: “Who are they??? Tell me, tell me now!!! … Wait a minute, we’re not headed to the airport… Where are we headed, you ass!!!”

A: “Relax, relax… We’re flying via RAAF airlines! There’s a military exercise being conducted between Australia and Canada and we’re hitching a ride to save some cash!”

P: groans “Oh shit, we’re gonna get arrested as spies!!! I’m too young to die…”

Andrew lapses into silence as they drive out to the local RAAF base where, much to Pierre’s shock, they’re waved inside then allowed to drive onto the tarmac up to the gaping maw of the rear of a storm grey C-117 Globemaster. Once their luggage is stowed, the intrepid pair of reporters are seated together on a rear facing, fold down seat that is actually more comfy than most economy seats on your average airliner…

Sometime later at 50,000 feet

A: “See, it’s not so bad… Just relax and enjoy the taxpayer funded ride of a lifetime.”

P: “How is Kyle getting our car to Quebec?”

A: “Huh?”

P: Louder and slightly more frantic “The race car, ya bellend, how are we going to get to the start of the race?”

A: “Relax, all taken care of… It’s waiting for us at the Quebec RCAF airfield; I had the car shipped as proceeds of crime!”

P: " I have a really bad feeling about this…"

TO BE CONTINUED


#52

Team Kent Croissants

The south-eastern brits are back again for another round of extensive driving across the United States in a car ‘worth’ 500 dollars.


Somewhere near Dorking, Surrey, England, Drizzle

The three guys got out of a dark blue, 2005 Erin Visto Mark 3 1.2, then walked up the driveway of a detached 3 bedroom house … with a garage.

The tallest of the three with light-ish brown half spiked up hair knocked on the door which was opened by a man of around 65 years old who ushered them towards the garage. He swung the garage door upwards to reveal a dark blue 1986 Ceder Ciervo. Old bicycles and assorted tat lined the sides of the garage. The man lifted a box was moved from the bonnet and the square of dustless paint left revealed how long the car had been sitting.

“400 quid? Cash” asked the tallest of the three putting his hand into his poket and removing a bunch of notes held together with a elastic band.

After negotiating a little bit with the man, who was the sort of person who knew he was never going to do anything with the car but was still dreaming of somehow fixing the car, they agreed on paying £402 for the car, for some reason the two made a difference.



“Space look at the space” said Jordan sprawling across the back seats basking in the expanse of of the rear.

“The sunroof works aswell and look at that steering wheel!” added Aaron sticking his spiky haired head through the opening in the roof after he finished ogling at the L shaped centre of the steering wheel.

“And leather it smells so … dusty and how could a dashboard be so square. It’s like a Rolls-Royce compared to the Friala” replied Damien feeling across the dashboard.

“V6 aswell it’s asthmatic but more than double the CC’s of the Friala, 5 gears on the floor, fuel injection, leather what more do you need.” said Aaron rather pleased with the reaction he was recieving. “I was looking for a Cidari but they’re going up in price massively now and they drink like a fish”


Aaron Robinson - the person with the mechanical know how in the group and will not stop the car even if it is belching, smoking or rattling unless he deems appropriate.

Damien Taylor - owns a MK3 Erin Visto and drives it suprisingly calmly and has now developed a competitive streak after spending hours over the past months on GT Sport.

Jordan Taylor - painted the decals on the Friala for Aaron’s spell in amatuer rallying and is still shaken up from when he was swayed into being co-driver for the season.


#53

[In thick russian accent] “Are you finished loading your stuff in the trunk yet?”

“No, I have to tetris the shit out of that miserable boot because YOU decided we should enter the least practical option we had. Why did we not take that Monolith instead. You love these. We could have fit our stuff and still sleep in it to save the tents and Motel fees. And even a shitty smogged 330 Rockway with a redneck turbo setup will outlast that 3.0.”

[In thick russian accent] “Exactly. I know Monolith inside out, so I’ll never drive one without a diesel engine. And you forget that a 400hp Turbo V8 is a terrible Idea in a mostly stock 1980s Minivan on ancient all-seasons.”

“A 1980s Monolith has a far better chassis than that Jager turd. Remind me to pick up a couple bottles of Jagermeister on our way to the start line. That seems appropriate”

[In thick russian accent] “But there would be no challenge in the Van, those things are way to overbuilt to break. And same with the Nohda. No risk.”

“You daily a Saminda, and now you’re telling me that you are a risk taker?”

[In thick russian accent] " Da, now get your shit finished, we’re bound to set sails in less than an hour"

“Blyat where are the ratchet straps, I need to tie the spare to the roof.”

[In thick russian accent] “You forget I used them to hold the rear axle in place and keep us alive should the trailing link break in half.”

“Oh yeah right, why’d you pick the Jager again?”


#54

Team V6 Vandals

Before the Run - Part 1


Amy was busy replacing the three windshield wipers on the Truckling when the news came in about their starting location. She looked up as Luke came running across the garage, managing to kick over a tool box in his combat boots on the way, sending tools all over the floor. Luke stepped on a garage creeper in his haste to get over there in a hurry, using the wheeled contraption as a rather unstable skateboard.

“What’s the rush, Luke?” Amy asked as Luke bailed off of the creeper, sending it flying across the garage, where it slammed into the door of the paint booth.

“Location data for the race start just came in. Affix winter blades to the wipers, we’re starting in Canada.” Luke said. “A little way outside Quebec City, if these coordinates are correct.”

Jake and Cody came running out of the break room with the same news, only to see the trail of destruction leading up to the car, and Luke talking with Amy.

“So, looks like it could be as cold as the inside of a glacier at the start, and somewhere in the southern US, we’re stopping, so… Let’s make sure the heat and the A/C work.” Cody said.

“Yeah, and now would be a good time to drain the coolant and actually make sure it’s a proper mix. Otherwise, we’ll freeze up.” Jake added.

“So, winter wipers, coolant change, heater and air conditioning. Anything else to add to the checklist?” Amy asked.

“Bring some spare clothes, because we’re going to need winter gear and we’re going to need warm weather gear. The run’s supposed to be over 3,000 miles, so we need to increase our supplies to compensate.” Luke replied. “Thankfully, we’ll be able to find hotels and campgrounds on the way, so lodging is covered, and food’s easy enough to deal with, there’s plenty of grocery stores, we have a hot-plate and a charcoal grill, plus there’s always fast-food. Fuel is, at least, a minor concern. We get 24 MPG, and we have an oil-leak somewhere, which we need to keep an eye on.”

“Forgetting something, Luke?” Amy asked.

“No. Transportation has already been figured out for how to get there. I’ve already gotten the three of you a business-class flight ahead, and I’ll drive the Truckling over the border on the back of our flat-bed tow truck. I’ll have one of the Raceworks Division drive the tow rig back home.” Luke said.

“Wait, you mean… I get to go on an airplane?!” Cody said, grinning.

“Yeah, and business class, too. Not the cramped seats of economy.” Jake said. “You’re not coming by plane, Luke?”

“Of course not.” Amy said. “Last time we went through an airport, Luke caused a bit of a stir. He’s made of metal, and, well, they didn’t like that he’s got this huge chunk of lead shielding around his upper chest. Naturally, Luke tried to explain it, but…”

“But the idiot heard ‘Reactor’ and went, if you’ll pardon the bad pun here, thermonuclear. Suffice it to say that I’m not allowed on airliners. Private planes, sure, but not an airliner. Not that I particularly care. I don’t fit in their definition of a ‘seat’ anyway.” Luke said, finishing Amy’s statement.

“Wait, so… You’re nuclear?” Cody asked.

“Of course. What, did you think I was just a walking bucket of batteries?” Luke replied. “No, I was assembled with enough fuel to last 25 years.”

“And it’s safe? Like, I’m not going to turn green or have my hair fall out from being around you?” Cody asked.

“You’re safe, Cody. Luke goes through a quarterly maintenance check to ensure his lead shielding is still intact. His last service record was-”

“11 days, 5 hours, 14 minutes, and 33 seconds ago. A complete pass, though if you desire, I can have the results printed for you, with necessary redactions to keep classified stuff classified. Suffice it to say that you’re in more danger from the cell-phone in your pocket, listening to the radio, sitting in front of an old CRT television, or laying on the beach on a sunny day. I’d be more worried about flying in an airliner full of people than about sitting in a car next to me. So many germs.” Luke said.

“No thanks. I’ll take your word for it.” Cody replied after a few seconds.

“I appreciate that. The report is 25 pages long, double sided, after all.”


A few days later

Amy, Jake, and Cody sat in their hotel room, having broken into the board games to pass the time. However, their messing around with Clue was broken up by screeching tires in the hotel parking lot, followed by a couple minutes later, a knock on the door. Amy got up and let Luke in, then said, “Been a while. Third game of Clue those two have played, and that’s after two games of chess and one of checkers. Was dreading the eventual game of Monopoly. How’s the Truckling?”

“As predicted. Heat works well, and that V6 cruises nicely. So, the start is in a couple days, and we’re here. Enjoying the vacation so far?” Luke responded.

“Yeah. It’s not as chaotic as I expected. I’m sure that’ll change soon, though.”


#55

Team X/2000 (Planning stage and Summary)

The duo have already been registered for the run and are now doing planning. All so good so far, except when they received the message that it would start somewhere in Canada and it well likely be snowy.

Karmann: . . . . . . . . . . What a load of RUBBISH . . . .
Iman: Why not put winter tyres?
Karmann: It’s not so simple son, with the suspension set-up in our car and 292 horses on the rear, the tyres effect will be little to none unless we drive carefully.
Iman:. . . . . . . Ok.
Karmann: putting the problem aside, its time for planning!


Strategy Phase:


Food will be ready-to-eat pack and 3L of tea in a Thermos. The volume will be enough to last the journey

Spare parts and accessories will be just be toolbox, winter chains and spare tyres. If we are lucky enough, we might see a parts shop at the right time

Entertainment will be a box of cassette tapes for Karmmen and an Mp3 for Iman. 3 pieces of powerbanks for Iman’s Mp3 will be suffice for Iman, unless he spends the whole day on the damn thing.

Departure to Canada will be by Tomorrow, hoping that all goes smoothly.


Karmenn: So with the planning done, meeting dismissed.

Karmenn and Iman leaves casually


#56

Team Thunder Taxi

A group of four enthusiasts (two each from the United States and Canada) wanting to accomplish what Team Big Blue (which they are close friends of) couldn’t last time: reach the finish.

The Car

A 2000 Rigel Motors RG4 5.7 that spent the first 10 years of its life as a premium taxi in Toronto, Ontario, after which it was sold to a private buyer in Los Angeles, California. The new owner used it as his daily driver, putting lots of miles on it in the process, and by the time Team Thunder Taxi acquired it, the odometer had read well over 200,000 miles. Despite the high mileage, this car has no faults - at least, none that the crew are aware of. Speaking of which…

The Crew

Jack Burns: A 27-year-old online motoring journalist from San Diego, CA. A close friend of Team BAGS and Team Big Blue, he will be the lead driver on this tour, and named the team Thunder Taxi after listening to the car as it rolled into the garage, which made him remark: “It’s a taxi… and it sounds like thunder.”

Chris Townsend: 23-year old rallyist from Toronto, Ontario who hopes his performance on this tour will get the pro-level teams noticed. Another close friend of Team Big Blue, he will serve as the team’s navigator - a fitting role given that he has been a co-driver for several seasons.

Bob Hunt: Age 28, this mechanic from Fort Worth, TX was recently headhunted for his extensive knowledge of many brands’ cars, including the Rigel Motors RG4 he will soon be riding in. He originally wanted to join Team Big Blue only to miss out due to a lack of vacancies in that team. This, then, is the chance he has been waiting for.

Vince Paulsen: Hailing from Vancouver, British Columbia, he recently turned 21 and has been following Chris’ exploits over the past few years. He has joined the team with the hopes of enjoying what should be the adventure of a lifetime.

Armed with their skills and a car that used to be an upmarket urban taxi, the team gritted their teeth and made their way to Quebec City…


#57

Somewhere on the side of the road, 56 miles to the starting line.

“You found it yet?”

[In thick russian accent] “Maybe”

“Go on…”

[In thick russian accent] “A Bolt has sheared”

“What kind of Bolt.”

[In thick russian accent] “Rod bearing”

“So much for a recently rebuilt engine”

[In thick russian accent] “He didn’t say it was done properly”

“He was technically not wrong, and now?”

[In thick russian accent] “Just pull the rod altogether and weld the Piston in place so we don’t lose too much oil”

“At the current rate we’ll run out of cylinders to lose two thirds into the event.”

[In thick russian accent] “Exactly”

And thus the struggle recommences


#58

Team Shitbox Brothers: pre race 2.

Original post.

(For flavor, read any line said by Ana or Alejandro in a thick Spanish accent).

Night before the start of the race. Both brothers are on the road towards the starting line. Ana is once again driving, while Alejandro plays some synths on his phone. This one is sounding at the moment.

Alejandro: “Still quite a few kilometres to go…can we switch seats sis?”

Ana: “Not a chance, I’m enjoying this too much. Anyways, looks like we’re just a couple or so kilometres away from the starting point, and the race starts tomorrow.”

The two brothers pull up at the starting line, parking their car in a place they wouldn’t be too much of an obstacle at.

Alejandro: “Pass me a sleeping bag.”

Ana: “And here we are, yet again…now we wait for the competition to show up. Did you come up with any strategy?”

Alejandro: “Well, first of all if we want to win we need to make it to the finish line. And the new route is twice as long, probably twice as harsh as we go from the cold north to the blistering hot south and the competition is probably going to be as fierce as last time. We’ve got ourselves into a nice challenge.”

Ana: “Hopefully not timing belts will be snapped this time. More than 3000 miles is no joke, hopefully the car will be able to take it…and don’t drink all of the energy drinks without telling me this time, you ass. So let’s do a quick check. Spare fuel?”

Alejandro: “Check.”

Ana: “Spare parts?”

Alejandro: “Timing belt, spark plugs and a spare alternator, appart from the tools. Check.”

Ana: “Food?”

Alejandro: “Food for a couple of days, depends on how we ration it. A six pack of energy drinks too. Check.”

And the two brothers kept checking their inventory, making sure everything was ready for the upcoming race.

To be continued.


#59

Team Redneck preliminary part 2

Upon finding out the location of the starting point the two toss in their winter hunting gear then head to the Sheriffs office in the truck to get Jake’s drivers license.

Otis, "It looks like its going to be closer to 3 weeks before we get back, It starts in Ontario, and we think we may be headed all the way to Louisiana, but were not sure where the finish line is yet.

Sheriff, “Well I guess he will go all summer without his license”

Jake, “Aw common, you know old lady Henderson is exaggerating about how fast I was going.”

Sheriff, “True, but the other witnesses weren’t, and we all know that wasn’t an isolated incident” the Sheriff mumbles “Definitely your fathers son”

Otis, “What?”

Sheriff, “Nut didn’t fall far from the tree”

Jake, “Sounds like you might have some stories to tell me, that maybe I could use to not be in so much trouble at home”

Sheriff, “Oh I have stories, but you ain’t gonna get them from me, your enough of a handful without having the well you did X as an excuse”

Otis, “If my memory serves you were involved in your fair share of those too”

Sheriff, “You better get out of here before I change my mind, and no telling him those stories either or there will be hell to pay for both of us.”

Four long days later the pair arrive in Quebec and immediately head to the parts store for a packet of 20 amp fuses and every relay they can get their hands on that will fit the HVAC.

Jake, “Maybe we should have fixed that since the last race”

Otis, “Didn’t think it was that big of a problem, besides it only blew one relay last time, thought it was an isolated incident, and its not like we depend on this old thing that much anymore”

Jake, “Its gonna suck if it goes out completely during a snow storm, or when we are in the humid hot south.”

Otis, “Yup”

They check into a hotel then start trying to diagnose the problem, made worse by the fact that everything is currently working just fine.


#60

At a gas station very close to the starting point

“Look what I found, some guy nearby is selling an '85 Blazer with the 325 within the budget, c’mon Yurij we can still have a fighting chance of completing this competition”

[In thick russian accent] “Oh the 325 I-Head? Those had more peak torque than the V8 and at like 1500rpm, they’re brilliant!”

“See! You know it too the Jager is the worst car currently running in the western hemisphere!”

[In thick russian accent] “But its still running so I won’t change my mind. But remind me to pick the Blazer up after we win this”

Headbutting intensifies

[In thick russian accent] “Пизда”

A friendly fist to the face knocks Frank unconsious, shortly afterwards the buttersmooth 5 cylinder straight six roars into life, quickly falls into a stable idle at 350rpm and swiftly diesels away