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The 1966 Great Archanian Trek


#164

Stage 1: Sector 1
Giuseppe sat behind the wheel, waiting. Arturo was already half blind, he said it was 5:00pm back home. Many of the cars left in clouds of dust and smoke, whereas the Inglese was far more modest in its departure, which is what you get at 25 lb/hp. Leaving the city, unlike some events they’d been through, didn’t require dodging citizens, but there was an incident involving an ox-cart and someone’s laundry. The run to the river had gone easily enough, and even the journey to Ziffa had been uneventful.

S1:2 Ziffa - Black Sands Lake
Climbing the side if the volcano was a combination of Giuseppe eating garlic bread and Arturo trying to drive, with the odd stop to water the rocks breaking up the trip. Even though the lake at the top was stunning, they could see they still had a long way to go before the end of the first stage.

S1:3 Black Sands Lake - Al Mina Oasis
Years of driving the Inglese had given Giuseppe a good understanding of how fast it could turn before it would overturn, but that experience hadn’t involved dogding razor sharp stone deposits, or boulders the size of a car. It was nice to get off the side of the volcano.

S1:4 Al Mina Oasis - Al Mina Oasis
Alternating the driving on the way down left Giuseppe in a good state to tackle this section. They may not have achieved the fastest time, but the old girl hadn’t shown any signs of letting them down.

S1:5 Al Mina Oasis - Fazo
Heading across the desert to Fazo, Arturo managed to hit a… I’m not sure what it was, but it was hard enough to buckle the wheel, and make Giuseppe drop his water. They only had two spare wheels, losing one on the first day probably wasn’t a good sign. On the other hand, they’d finished in a respectable 7th overall, 4th in the pro teams. There was some harsh language in the moments before crossing the line, what with Arturo having learned before the race that the Ponni was crewed by two guys with Italian sounding names.

The Spaghetti farmer and his Garlic-breathing associate were quite pleased with themselves for finishing the first stage, but Arturo was fairly sure he’d packed a spare battery…


#165

So, on the rest of the TREK:

  • I’ll try to have one stage every 2 weeks. There’s a lot of manual work involved, and I want to take my time to analyse the results to allow me to write something interesting rather than just to post times.

  • Regarding repairs, the poll has decided cars will be repaired to the previous damage level based on their service cost (service cost*10 = seconds to repair) after each stage.

  • Stages 2 and 4 will be drivability focussed and will at the most see 1 extra point of damage added.

  • Stages 3 and 5 will be reliability focussed just like the first stage, expect to see cars going out here.

  • Cars that went out get a 12 hour penalty, plus they are repaired to damage level 1 (so, service cost103 = seconds to repair added to that time). The team can obviously also opt to simply retire.

Total TREK time including repairs for the start of Stage 2:

Summary
Position Car Team Status Total S1
1 Sinistra Savage Concept Sinistra Performance Division Professional 07:03,04
2 SOCAUT Pyrénées V8 Team Pyrénées Amateur 07:19,08
3 KMC Avventurer KMC Professional 07:32,37
4 Caliban Thunder ‘Scafell’ Tin Of Anchovies Professional 07:37,32
5 FAAL Mesaia 152 Team Sechsmötörigewildsaü Amateur 09:22,07
6 Ponni Weekend No Name 3 Amateur 09:24,17
7 Bogliq GPDV TREK Car Team There and Back Again Amateur 09:29,51
8 Franklin Rhino G&EHE1966 Harcourt-Entwhistle Amateur 09:34,30
9 Puttzalong Inglese Rally PRTF (Puttzalong Rally Team Fruinia) Professional 09:44,36
10 Ninomiya Evron Coupe (Custom) Team Desert Stars Amateur 09:51,06
11 Bramble Flint Chert Bramble Factory Professional 09:54,04
12 Bruce’s Loose Nut Jar Ferreira Family Crashing Team Amateur 09:54,26
13 Ligrani La Follia Hurry Squad Amateur 10:24,52
14 TSR Ultra Rally Safari Edition Katana Racing Team Professional 10:27,37
15 Pengting Torra 273 NAAC (North Archanan Automobilist Club) Amateur 10:33,45
16 ACA RoadCruiser 440 Police Interceptor Special Offroad Team Cops and Robbers Professional 10:37,17
17 Epoch M30 3.3 Trek Epoch Professional 10:38,42
18 LSV Buccaneer - Halti Special LSVRT team Professional 10:40,59
19 Cossack TT2500 (modified) No Name 1 Amateur 10:41,19
20 IP Brigadeer 1900 DX2 4x4 IP Motorsports Professional 11:07,25
21 BM Feather No Name 2 Amateur 11:29,13
22 Sakura Empress S (E10) Baja Custom Sakura-Mathews America Factory Team Professional 12:41,50
23 Rapido Motors (RM) Skylight DS Rapido Motors Factory Team Professional 13:00,58
24 Keika I Safari Keika Automotive Professional 13:02,18
25 Deer And Hunt Hawg GAT Team OneShot Professional 13:04,45
26 JHW Sparrow Panamerica Ecurie Crowley Professional 13:07,10
27 Ardent Chesapeake GT Rally The Pride of Ohio Professional 25:47,54

I wouldn’t worry too much about large time gaps, a lot can still happen in this TREK. Also, every stage shall be treated as an individual round, so you can all still end up on the podium for an individual stage.


Now, regarding the cars:

The average TREK-car:

  • is front-engined 4x4 (17; 3 are front-wheel drive; 6 are rear-wheel drive; 1 is mid-engined rear-wheel drive);

  • has a displacement of 3197,5 cc (smallest is 1001cc, biggest is 8392cc);

  • has 132,3 horsepower (lowest is 70,4, highest is 344,4);

  • has a torque of 233,7 Nm [171.9 ft.lb] (lowest is 85,5 [63,1], highest is 573,9 [422,6]);

  • weighs in at 1148 kg [2531lb] (lowest is 443 [977], highest is 1800 [3968]);

  • tops out at 166,5 km/h [103,5 mph] (lowest is 123 [76,5], highest is 222 [138]);

  • accelerates from 0 to 100 [0 to 61] in 11,9 seconds (slowest is 21,6, fastest is 7,1).


#166

So you mean to tell me the top 4 not only all finished below 8 but also didn’t have anything to repair?

Reliable bois.


#167

Or lucky bois.

In which case they might do an Ardent in the Third Stage.


#168

Fingers crossed that’s not the case


#169

That sounded like a threat :thinking:


#170

Pure luck! I nearly have the average car and a reliably of 60-65 if I remember well…


#171

When can we expect the next stage?


#172

Hopefully I can start tomorrow evening (though maybe not the full stage) - weekend at the very latest in any case.

Edit: just 4 more cars to simulate; expect Sector 1 and 2 of Stage 2 to go up tomorrow evening (EU time).


#173

Welcome to Stage 2: Fazo - Zimbukto, of the 1966 Great Archanian TREK

My name is Allistair Duncan, and together not with former race driver Konrad Kohlmann, because he had to try the local cuisine and is now coming along the caravan in one of the vehicles with a portable toilet… The hardened traveller that I am, I know to only ever eat canned spam and canned beans.

The stage we tackle today is faster, and lighter on the cars. Faster speed also means more chance for accidents to happen, so this will be a test for drivability.

Sector 1 - Fazo - Trek Camp 1

A slow start into the great nothing, rocks as far as the eye can see. To break up the monotony we have set up camp with the help of some nomad herdsmen.

Sector 2 - Trek Camp 1 - Sali

The second leg of the tranverse of the rock desert, with a stop at the oasis Sali, a small village.

Sector 3 - Sali - Point Nowhere

Still driving through rock desert, also this part is so barren and featureless that even rocks are rare. The underground is hard rock with the occasional sand patch. Fast, but it might catch you off guard.

Sector 4 - Point Nowhere - Agorgot

Suddenly the land rises up, and so do you, up to the summit of the Agorgot mountain.

Sector 5 - Agorgot - Anuman

Down the mountain we go and here we reach sandy desert; though no big dunes yet.

Sector 6 - Anuman - Zimbukto

Final drive through the sandy desert towards the historical city of Zimbukto, capital of the most powerful kings of pre-Archanian times.

Preparations among the teams have been going on all night, with some last minute repairs for those who need it. The stress is taking charge of some of the teams, and the race director told us team The Pride of Ohio in the Ardent, despite getting their car drivable again, albeit a bit charred, wanted to retire from the Trek.

All good and well that, but we’re in the middle of goddamn nowhere, so - he told them - you better drive your ass to Zimbukto anyway to catch a plane there if you really want to go home still after that. So, well, they are still in, for now.


#174

Team Tin of Anchovies.

Before Stage 2.

Alec is about to wake up when he’s “gently” kicked by Joshua.

Joshua: “Alright you cunt, time to wake up and drive.”

Alec: “Bolloooooocks…is it daytime already?”

Joshua: “Yeah, wake up. I reckon this stage should a piece of piss if you drive like yesterday.”

And the two drivers got ready and into the Scafell for the next stage of the Trek…what would fate have ready for them?


#175

Bramble
William and Robert are sitting outside their tent, a large kettle full of tea sat between them.

“Is it time Bill”

“Yep. I’ll pack up, you go find whose swearing at this time in the morning. Sounds like an Australian and a Southerner, I’ll show them how to swear, the peices of…”

The next couple of minutes outside the bramble tent consist of the older ‘responsible’ Robert insulting the language, lifestyle choice,car and suspected parentage of the people ruining a good cup of tea, to the growing shock of Will.

“Language…where do you even learn that?”

“If the royal engineers teach you one thing, my young innocent driver, it’s how to ‘properly’ swear”

“…I thought it was fixing vehicles”

“That’s optional”

“…”


#176

Stage 2: Fazo - Zimbukto

Sector 1 - Fazo - Trek Camp 1
A slow start into the great nothing, rocks as far as the eye can see. To break up the monotony we have set up camp with the help of some nomad herdsmen.

And they are off, one by one in close succession. Immediate uproar when the first car to leave, the last-placed Ardent almost misses the first turn, but manages to recover and continue unscathed. The start continues to give entertainment as the Sakura Empress revs its engine and immediately cuts out with the noise of bolts hitting the pavement. That sounds like a hasty repair job. They manage to get started soon enough, but I’m not sure either of them knows where the bolts came from.

The Sakura doesn’t look like the only one having early issues, the Epoch is sounding like redlining in second gear but appears to slow down nonetheless until they shift to third. This causes issues for the LSV Buccaneer who are right behind when that problem manifests itself, only to have to dodge because clearly the brakes aren’t working as they should on that car.

With only further almost-incident - the Pengting almost losing control when hitting the dirt roads out of Fazo - we are finally off into the Great Rocky No-Mountains, as this plateau is called. The combination of high speed and rocks seems to be problematic for a few. Moving carefully and clearly hindered by the terrain is the Keika Safari. Seeing this and attempting a different route, the FAAL Mesaia hits a particularly rocky patch – not much time is going to gained there…

Below us is the Bruce’s Loose Nut Jar of the Ferreira Family Crashing Team and we can hear the noise up to hear. It doesn’t look like it’s going any slower, but there’s certainly something rattling there. They pass another team where something must have been rattling meanwhile: IP Motorsports is standing still and Pawoon Khaodai is lying under the car – not sure if he’s actually finding or doing anything.

We’re nearing a few cars racing in close proximity now, and that’s a recipe for disaster on this terrain. As if on cue, the Ponni Weekend loses control, causing the SOCAUT Pyrénées to spin out; the Rapido Motors Factory Team equally has to take evasive manouvres and almost flips over an embankment. The real loser of this episode has to be the Bogliq they all just passed. It tries to evade the mess by going through a ditch and gets itself stuck.

Meanwhile we hear from some other smaller issues: the Sinistra Savage is having some traction issues whenever the terrain gets bumpy, and is skidding all over the place. Team Cops and Robbers in the ACA is apparently having some issues with the engine throttle and are continuing at an uneven pace.

The Boqliq and the Ponni are the only ones still left at the earlier site. The Bogliq is patiently moving back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth, and we can smell the clutch up to here. Bruno Volponi is standing next to the Ponni and gesturing to us that the gearbox is kaput and they are working on that.

Meanwhile lets hear about the current top ten (in alphabetical order)!

Well, maybe not just yet, two teams are currently in the technical service area just before the checkpoint: the JHW Sparrow is standing there with Fred Jones and Ken Crowley listening to the engine. Also there the Dear And Hunt, because… I’m not sure for what actually… Parker and Carlson are out of the car and talking to some herdsman who have helped the caravan set up there near a local source – and who obviously don’t understand them at all. I think they might be looking for the checkpoint itself, did they really miss the sign indicating technical here, and checkpoint behind the next hill? How to get lost where there is nothing, by Team OneShot.

Good, the top ten cars at this point:

BM Feather
Bramble Flint Chert
Bruce’s Loose Nut Jar
Caliban Thunder ‘Scafell’
Keika I Safari
LSV Buccaneer - Halti Special
Sakura Empress S (E10) Baja Custom
Sinistra Savage Concept
SOCAUT Pyrénées V8
TSR Ultra Rally Safari Edition


#177

Team Sechsmötörigewildsaü, lost somewhere in between rocks or some shit

Jean-Martin: “So erm…”
Xavier: “Hàlt d’Gosch.”


Jean-Martin: “It’s…erm… still better than flipping over a~”
Xavier: “Leck mi am Arsch. I told you this was a bad idea but NOOOOO.”

Jean-Martin: “At least we’re not feeling too much of the bumps, ri~”
Xavier: “I swear I’m gonna shut you up by shoving what’s left of my ass bones in your mouth if we ever get out of here.”

and the bumpy, uneven ride continues.


#178

PAWOON: (a long row of Mamayan curse words) PROPSHAFT BOLTS!
CHANDAWANG: Don’t swear…
PAWOON: Well it may be good if we still have 4wd on the hardest trails but we are almost losing the front propshaft! Don’t they even look if the cars they send us factory drivers are put together properly?
CHANDAWANG: No.


#179

Stage 2: Fazo - Zimbukto

Sector 2 - Trek Camp 1 - Sali
The second leg of the tranverse of the rock desert, with a stop at the oasis Sali, a small village.

Everyone has had a drink and we set off again towards Sali. It’s another uncomfortable high-speed section. There’s some actual racing to be seen now. The Keika Safari, the Bramble Sprint and KMC Avventurer are threading to the terrain and each others’ trails at breakneck speeds. At least that makes this sector fun, as this is the longest continuous stretch the teams have to endure.

The continuous battering takes its toll on the drivers; Bobby Morgan in the Ardent is clearly still pondering whether or not to forfeit in Zimbukto, and drives awkwardly on a rock, shredding the front left tire; Bruno Volponi and Enzo Lombardi in the Ponni Weekend are having an extra rough time bumping up and down over the rocks; and the Ferreira’s, trusting their car to climb over everything in a straight line, manage to miscalculate their ground clearance and beach themselves.

Interesting battles going on mid-pack in the meantime with the Puttzalong of PRTF and the Pengting of local team NAAC literally trading paint, and very close but amicable racing between the Epoch and the Ligrani La Follia of Hurry Squad. Spectacularly, Hurry Squad misses to spot a rock and rolls the Ligrani. Beaten and battered they look, they don’t even stop; they barely lose ground on the Epoch.

The Ligrani is clearly very resilient, but other cars are less so, and this harsh ride is especially punishing on the tires. The BM Feather has shred two of its tires; The Caliban is replacing one – and either they forgot a jack or Insane Josh Morgan is doing morning gymnastics by lifting the car while Alex Henry is replacing the tire; even the Puttzalong and the Pengting – almost simultaneously – have to pull over and grab a spare.

I get a call from one of our spotters that the IP Brigadeer standing still again and the team is searching for whatever issue is plaguing them, looks drivetrain-related. The Bramble Flint is standing still as we can see from where we are currently and you can see what looks like a small oil trail. Robert Chamberlain is trying to find and plug the leak.

There are some nasty hidden ditches and valleys here, and the winner from the last stage seems to have run out of luck. The Sinistra, already having had issues in the first part, has manage to get itself stuck in a gully. That left steering / drive wheel doesn’t look good either from where I’m looking.

As we move closer to the Sali village, we see the Keika, still suffering from the terrain. It’s really bouncing now; Daniel Chase and Jack Williams might be suffering from some suspension damage, I fear. We also see Team Sechsmötörigewildsaü with the FAAL parked and engine open, the two Muellers fanning the engine – it seems like an overheating issue.

We get notification of an accident near the checkpoint now! The Sakura seems to have had a complete loss of steering – was this where the bolts earlier came from? - and rammed a sizable rock. That will be a huge repair job.

Let’s look at the top cars running into Sali (alphabetically):

BM Feather
Bramble Flint Chert
Bruce’s Loose Nut Jar
Caliban Thunder ‘Scafell’
Keika I Safari
KMC Avventurer
LSV Buccaneer - Halti Special
Rapido Motors (RM) Skylight DS
SOCAUT Pyrénées V8
TSR Ultra Rally Safari Edition

We also get notification from the checkpoint at Sali that Team There and Back Again in the Bogliq is still suffering from that fried clutch, and running behind schedule.


#180

rrr…rrr…RRRRRRDDDRRRDDDRRRRRRRRRR BANG BANG BANG!

WROOOOOOOOOOOARRRR! WROOOOOOAAAAAAAAR!

CHANDAWANG: Oh, great, we aren’t getting anywhere now.
PAWOON: I’ll check then…

2 minutes later

PAWOON: OH GREAT! NOW WE HAVE LOST EVERY SINGLE BOLT BETWEEN THE PROPSHAFT AND THE TRANSFER CASE! IT’S JUST ROTATING FREELY OUT OF THE GEARBOX!
CHANDAWANG: But what the… With the propshaft for the front axle in place, we get another propshaft failure?
PAWOON: You’re so correct, and what’s worse, I can’t see a single bolt anywhere! They are gone somewhere in the desert I guess! We have to seek for them, but if we can’t find them we need to find some proper bolts to replace them with, if not…it’s end of this race! We don’t have either front- or rear wheel drive now, as long as nothing is driving the transfer case…
CHANDAWANG: SIGH! OK, I admit now, I start to think like you, they probably was drunk at the line when building our car… I’m getting kinda tired of this right now.


#181

The Savage roared violently as Luke hurtled through the first stage, spinning tires every time they hit a bump. Mark tried to convince Luke, unsuccessfully, to spare the military tires the indignity of doing burnouts on the rocks, while Luke wrestled their former concept car over the line.

“We’re making good time, Mark. Who cares if we leave some rubber on the rocks?” Luke said.

“Watch yourself. You wreck the car because of this insanity you’ve picked up, I’m making you do the repairs.”


The second stage seemed to be going well, despite a few more rock-burnouts, up until Luke misjudged the speed of their approach and the depth of the gully. Team Savage landed hard on the driver’s side steering wheel with a nasty crunch, sending Mark into the dashboard and Luke into the steering wheel.

“Oh, I’m gonna feel that one later.” Mark said, groaning. “How’s the car after that?”

Luke looked over the door, then sighed. “I broke the damn car. That wheel’s not straight, the steering wheel is. Help me with the jack so I can beat the tie-rod straight-ish again, and let’s hope I didn’t trash the CV joint or we’re going to be in for a long day in the sun fixing that.”

“Well, I’d say ‘I told you so’ except this one was caused by not having enough speed to clear it.” Mark said.

Working together, Luke and Mark sank some tow-poles into the rocks, attached their winch blocks, and grabbed the ropes. “Time to see if our calculations were correct on the pulley ratios for our lift blocks. Same shit we use in the engine room, but I doubled 'em up. Should let us walk the car out of this ditch.” Luke said. Mark nodded, and they pulled on the count of three, bending the tow poles and slowly dragging the wounded Savage out of the gully. They packed up their winch gear, got out a jack, some jack-stands, and wheel chocks, then set about straightening the steering enough to limp the car to the line.

They got into their car, taking off with just as much, if not more, fury as they had before, trying to drown out the raspy rattling from the CV joint with more engine roar.


#182

Team Sechsmötörigewildsaü, somewhere before the village idk

Intense flapping sounds

Xavier: “Erm… I’m uh… sorry I yelled at you.”


Long silence… Then more intense flapping sounds


Xavier: “I should have checked the level on the c~”
Jean-Martin: “HALT D’GOSCH AND MAKE WIND!”

Double intense flapping sounds


#183

Rapido Motors Team

Rajha Mirada - 37
Daniel “Dany” Focada - 34
Car: 1965 Rapido Motors Skylight DS


Stage 2, Sector 1&2
Rajha has taken driving duties again, with Dany doing navigations. They are driving at a steady pace, keeping up with a small group of racers…

R: I-ee, we’ree in de mix naw.
D: Ya, tis good pace, we do good times.
R: Oi, wats this? …
Two cars ahead of them start loosing control, one spins out.

Dany: Ayyaa!! We,re gooing down!
Rajha: Correcting the car from the 2 wheel driving on the embankement Naw! Tis is how we really drive! Tis is the skillz ofa professional!
Dany: Aye! Alert me when ya gonna do the fancy driving!

Rajha Laughs as they start bickering again in the car.


-Editors Note: Rajha and Dany’s bickering is not a sign of anger at each other, rather it’s a sign of how close the two are when they work together. When they bicker it’s like they’re brothers (but not by blood). It’s a deeper friendship that stems back to their primary school days.-