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The Kinda Grand Tour [FINALE]


#77

Team Twin-Snail

Team Information


Chicago, Illinois, Day -2

As the four members of Team Twin-Snail rushed around, packing the last things into the Minerva Midnight’s rather spacious trunk, it became rather obvious that this time, they were starting out a lot smoother than they had for the Roulette Runner. However, they had a different issue, and that was the very long drive to get to their starting gate, and thereby, they’d have to rush it in a damned-right-hurry.

“Luke, you’re sure she’ll survive 2,100 extra miles doing this?” Linda asked.

“It should. Amy’s been through the entire DOHC block, and it’s been running like clockwork since then.” Luke replied.

“So… We’re gonna cannonball 32 hours, plus a little extra, just to get there?” Scott questioned.

“Consider it a shakedown run for our lucky find. If it’s going to do anything, it’ll throw a fit on the way there and we’ll know what the problem is.” Amy replied, before they got in the car.

With everything checked off the list, they started up their mostly-trouble-free Minerva Midnight and headed out, with Luke driving.


Somewhere in North Dakota, Day -1

A quick hotel stop for the night followed by more driving to make it.

Luke grew impatient with highway traffic, deciding to belt the poor old car and slammed the gas pedal to the floor. However, instead of the usual aggression it’d shown on the first day, the Midnight bucked and shuddered, flashed an angry amber light once, then twice, then finally ignited the “Maintenance Required - Engine” lamp before charging off down the highway.

“The fuck was that, Luke!?” Linda yelled.

“Felt like she couldn’t get air.” Luke replied.

“Parts store, now.” Amy demanded. “We’ll pick up two Minerva throttle body gaskets and some throttle body cleaner.”

“I’ll pay for a box of bloody gaskets.” Luke grumbled out. “Long as we get this fixed when we can.”

They roared along the highway, despite the glowing amber warning light.

“Luke, don’t you have an OBD-II connector?” Scott asked after some time.

“I do, but it’s packed in my bag, in the trunk, probably underneath all of my spare clothes and my maintenance gear. We’ll put up with it for now. Besides, I’ve driven a Storm Surge nearly 8,000 miles with the DynamIQ Warning light on the dash glowing. Long as we know what’s going on, we’ll be fine. And this feels like a lack of throttle response due to either a sticking throttle body or a fouled up Mass Air Flow sensor. Hoping it’s one of those, personally. If it’s an air leak, we’re likely going to have issues.” Luke said.


Birch Bay State Park, Washington, 1:30 PM. Day 0.

The dark purple Minerva Midnight settled smoothly into the camping area, engine purring quietly as Luke looked for a good parking spot.

“How about next to that big red wagon?” Linda asked after they’d spent the better part of 10 minutes cruising around the parking lot at idle.

“Could work. Everyone else seems to have given it a lot more space than it needs.” Luke replied, before swinging the car around and aiming for a parking space, leaving a respectful empty spot between the two of them so that they weren’t at risk of banging doors.

The instant the engine was shut down, Linda, Scott, and Amy set about building the camp, while Luke watched the team he’d parked next to. After a few minutes, Luke opened the driver’s door, stepping out of the car.

Of the four of them, Luke was the one who stood out the most, and made no effort to blend in. His Twilight-Blue paint reflected the sunlight as well as his silver accents, and had decided that combat boots and camouflage pants were the right thing to wear while going without any shirt.

“Luke, where’d you put the matches?” Amy asked.

“I didn’t bring any.” he said, before walking over to Amy, Scott, and Linda, who had filled a firepit with sticks and twigs, only to find they didn’t have anything to light it with.

“Well, there goes our plan to cook some S’mores.” Linda said.

“Scott, give me that filthy shop rag you’ve got in your pocket.” Luke said.

“I spilled oil, I cleaned it up.” Scott said. “Thought you’d appreciate that.”

“I do. But I can’t make fire without something with a low flash point.” Luke said, accepting the oily rag. He touched the red-hot tip of a soldering iron to it, igniting the oil-soaked rag, then carefully placed the burning mess in the fire pit.

“Give that a few minutes to burn off, then make your campfire snacks.” Luke then said, retracting the soldering tip and moving to look around their car.

(And I’m open for RP. And yes, I figured that was the best available opportunity for our major malfunction to happen, that we’d have our check engine and intermittent hesitation during the 32 hour, 2,146 mile drive to get here. Plus, it gives us the excuse that if the car fails during the drive, it’s because it already drove quite the distance already.)


#78

Team BAGS, Day 0

Brian checked the car thoroughly on the day before they were scheduled to depart and packed his team’s allocation of supplies - split almost evenly between food and spare parts. The Oswego looked almost as good as new on the outside, but there were a few issues with it.

“For the most part our car is fine, except for the slightly vague gear changes. In fact, the stuck window and broken 8-Track player might be more of a concern to us. At any rate, it’s about time we embarked on an adventure like this!”, he told his team.

Gary asked, “Why wouldn’t we?”

To which Amy responded, “Well, there’s always the risk of a terminal failure, especially given the sheer mileage our Oswego has covered in 35 years…”

Stephanie continued:. “…However, apart from those issues you’ve just mentioned, it’s mechanically sound.”

Brian added, “So, how aggressive will our strategy be to start with?”

Immediately Gary gave him an answer. “Not too fast or slow - I’d suggest somewhere in the middle.”

“Well, that’s sorted then. Now let’s go as far as we can in this brick - and all the way if possible!” Amy replied. And so Team BAGS waited for the start, confident that their car would go the distance - or at least reach the halfway mark.


#79

Previous Post || Next Post

(Sorry if my story clashes with what was already written, hard to have story elements perfectly match up when everyone is independent and writing at different times)

Team: Clutch Droppers


Columbus, OH, Day -3

The time had finally come to head off for the starting line of the event, which happened to lie on the other side of the country from us… The timing of the event was nearly perfect, coming in at the beginning of summer, when the weather would be nice for the majority of the drive out to the start line, as well as during the event. Ryan and I got together three days before the event was to start, gathering supplies and preparing for the cross-country trip. Jason would be of little help for much of the packing, so we decided to leave him out of our preparation until we had most of the work done.

Bob: Alright Ryan, we are gonna have to drive hard to get out to Washington before the event starts and I am honestly worried about driving all the way out there with the engine being as heavily modified as it is. I think we should put it on a trailer to take it across the country. I know we won’t get a proper shakedown, but we will have a better chance of the car living through the entire event.

Ryan: I understand what you mean, but I want to drive it! Isn’t that the entire reason for this event? But yeah… I have worries about the engine as well. maybe we could drive it every now and then just to make sure everything is running ok on the way?

Bob: I guess we could do that. Some short duration driving throughout the trip just to keep it loose would be good. Now, let’s figure out what we need to pack. We are going to need three tents, food and drinks, fire starting and maintenance gear, cooking utensils, spare parts… the car is going to fill up fast.

Ryan: Don’t worry about the survival stuff, I got us covered. We should head down to the auto store and junkyard to grab some extra parts though, just in case. Let’s keep our parts and supplies about equal, that should see us through this pretty well.


Columbus, OH, Day -2

After gathering our supplies and packing the car as efficiently as we could (our Tetris skills really came in handy), Ryan and I headed to Jason’s house to get this roadtrip started.

Jason: Sup guys, we ready to do this?!

Bob & Ryan: Hell yeah!

Bob: Ok, I’ll take the first driving shift in the Bil. Do you want to ride with me or Ryan, Jason?

Jason: No way am I riding in Ryan’s jeep if I don’t have to, that thing is annoying as all hell on the highway with his stupid off-road tires.

Ryan: Fine, I didn’t want you in my car anyway… but we will be putting the car onto my trailer in Indianapolis… so don’t get too comfortable.

Pulling out of Jason’s driveway, our 1992 jeep and 1996 sedan, both in fairly bad condition, made for a ragtag convoy, but with a thirty-seven hour trip ahead of us, we were ready for anything.

What we were not ready for was the massive thunderstorm that rolled in only a few miles outside of Columbus. The forecast had called for rain, but we were not prepared for the deluge that rolled over us in a matter of moments, completely obscuring the road and forcing us to pull off to wait it out. Turning off the Bil turned out to be a bad idea. Once the rain had passed we tried to get back on the road, but the car would not turn over. A quick check of the engine confirmed out suspicions, we were out of oil. We knew there was an oil leak and that the engine was burning oil, but we had failed to top it off before leaving Columbus, luckily we had brought a case of oil with us. One bottle of oil latter and some gentle coaxing of the engine later, the car sputtered to life and we were off.

Cruising along Interstate 70 towards Indianapolis we noticed that the storm must have cleared everyone from the road, we were all alone with nothing but the endless cornfields to keep us company. In order to spice things up, I flipped on my radar detector, hooked the car’s AUX cable into my iPhone, and que’d up some Queen. I pulled alongside Ryan in his jeep and rev’d the engine. The turbo whine sounded impressive, and even though we all knew the jeep would be no match for the Bil, Ryan still tried to take it on. Gunning it on a long, open, section of road the sound of the engine was ear-splitting, apparently there was a hole or gap in the exhaust, but Jason and I were putting quite a distance between us and Ryan. We just managed to hit the car’s “new” top speed before the temperature gauge reached into the red and the engine power suddenly reduced (a nice safety feature in such an old car). Once Ryan caught up we cruised on to Indianapolis listening to the sweet sound of Classic Rock.


Minneapolis, Minnesota, Day -1

The previous had been pretty uneventful, once we reached the far side of Indianapolis we loaded our car onto the trailer Ryan’s jeep was pulling in order to give it a rest. We followed our GPS along Interstates 65, 90, and 94 to Minneapolis, Minnesota where we found a cheap hotel and turned in for the night. 12 hours down, 25 to go.

Waking up at 6 am the next morning we made a couple stops for breakfast and snacks before continuing west on I-94.

Once we got into North Dakota the scenery started to get more interesting and beautiful. The side open spaces, sparse vegetation in areas, mountains slowly growing on the horizon, it all made for an epic feeling drive. Crossing in Montana the interstate changed direction to run along the Yellowstone River, giving us some amazing vistas and scenery to take in on the long drive. Accompanied by our diverse and excellent music choices, the hours slipped by, punctuated only by the road noise coming from the large off-road tires on Ryan’s jeep.

Roughly 12 hours of driving and it was time to call it a break for the day. We had made it all the way to Billings, Montana, and the pacific mountain range loomed large in the distance. We would be tackling those winding roads tomorrow and hopefully arriving at Birch Bay State Park in Washington before the sun went down.


Billings, Montana, Day 0

Waking up yet again at 6 am, we wanted to get an early start as it was going to be a 14 hour drive to make it to the Park. We grabbed some food to go and ate breakfast as we approached the base of the Rocky Mountains. As we neared the Idaho boarder we could tell the jeep was struggling with all the uphill driving and hauling the car was not helping. These old jeeps already had underpowered engines and we were barely doing 40mph at times. We decided to chance it and drive the car separately so we would not fall too far behind schedule. Without the load of the Bil, the jeep was much more capable and we were able to maintain freeway speeds all the way into Washington.

We stopped in Seattle in order to replenish our supplies. We grabbed some more engine oil and immediately topped off the car again, as well as some air fresheners, and rolls of paper towles. Then we made the most important stop, beer. We had brought a decent amount of beer along for the cross-country drive, but were running dangerously low. Only Ryan and I drank, making it a bit easier to pack, but we had built up quite a thirst over the long hours driving… and went a tad overboard. 10 cases of beer and one meticulously packed car later, we were satisfied and ready to meet the rest of the teams at the start line. It was a good thing we had Ryan’s jeep for at least another night, as the rear seats were currently occupied by beer, but that would be remedied later that night.

About a mile out from the camp site we pulled over and discussed the loud exhaust and what we should do about it.

Ryan: I think the muffler clamp has come loose, we can probably just tighten it down and that should get the exhaust going where it is supposed to.

Bob: I have a better idea, since we are about to get into camp why don’t we take off the muffler clamp and let the pipe from the cat hang open and really make this thing annoying. We can roll into camp reving the engine and let that loud-ass wastegate get everyone’s attention. They will either hate us or… probably hate us, but at least they might think we have something serious under the hood!

Jason: HAHAHA, I like it, let’s do it!

So after a few turns of the socket wrench, we fired up the Bil to find out just how bad the sound was. I punched the gas down for a second, but it was enough to leave all three of us temporarily deaf. As the high-piercing whine that accompanies hearing damage faded we all had the dumbest smiles… we were ready. We grabbed a few construction earmuffs from Ryan’s jeep and after we had a good distance ahead of Ryan, Jason and I turned off toward the campground.

Seeing the lights through the trees helped guide us towards the cap ground, the sun had gone down about an hour ago and we were a bit confused as to where exactly we were supposed to be camping. Turning into the clearing for the campsite we spied about 15 other cars, more than we expected. We decided to get everyone’s attention by putting our foot down a bit. Between the actually bassy rumble with the muffler disconnected and the massive turbo whine, it was clear people were startled by our appearance.

We rev’d a few times before rolling into a spot near a completely made hatchback. It was some sort of 4 door hatchback… with a giant-ass spoiler on the roof, neon pink rims, and flame decals. We felt inadequate next to such a monstrosity, but we hoped and prayed it drove as terribly as it looked in the coming event. Looking around we saw a large assortment of vehicles, an orange hatchback caught our attention, as well as a car from the 40’s, a station wagon, and not one but two purple cars! This was going to be an interesting event.

Due to our later than expected arrival, Ryan quickly went about setting up our tents and a nice fire pit while Jason and I scoped out the competition. We were able to talk to most of the teams to get a basic backstory and learn about their cars before our hunger drove us back to our now raging fire. In-fact it was more of a bonfire at this point, was easily reaching 20 feet in the air. We stared at Ryan disapprovingly, but we knew this was what Ryan always did when he was in charge of the fire. We pulled out a skillet and small metal stand which we placed next to the fire and dumped a package of hotdogs in. Popping open a couple of beers we stared into the fire while the dogs sizzled away. It was a perfect night in the Northwest, not too hot, not too cold, and it wasn’t raining!

Once we had finished dinner and packed up the cooking gear, we made sure the fire was at a more manageable size before preparing for bed. After polishing off the last of our, shared, third case of beer, we put the fire out and climbed into our tents for a goods night rest before the start of the race in the morning.


#80

I’ll post an introduction in a few hours


#81

Team Bamford

Day 0 in the park

" Well look at that pops, we made it to America after all!" yelled Jason from a cab of a tilt-tray with the Bamford on the back.
Ken had been skeptical about their chances in the 3cyl Bamford and it wasn’t until some days from the event start that his grandson had told him that the event was taking place in America and he was expected to pay for the air freight and airline tickets, because after all, he was the “rich guy”
Simon grinned as he and Phillip finished unloading the Bamford from the tilt-tray.
“Look at this!” moaned Phillip “Someone’s dinged the door in!” he continued.
“I wish someone would ding your heads in” muttered Ken as he slowly eased himself into his tent
“That’s not the right attitude to have man, you should be thrilled that we’ve given you the chance to compete in this event”
“The chance!” roared Ken with mocking laughter “That’s bloody great! Look at us, three teens and some old bastard sleeping in a broken mongrel of a car in a park full of people even stranger than you three!”
“At least you didn’t have to ride with those two in the truck” put in Simon “That driver was ready to do his block if they’d kept going on”
“Oh yes Simon, how lucky I was that I had to pay for three separate plane flights so I could die in a junker instead of my nice warm house! AND FOR YOUR…”
Ken was silenced by a car howling into the campgrounds.
“Damn, that thing sounds serious!” chuckled Phillip as he hopped into the Bamford and turned the key.
Silence, save for the car that was finding a place to park.
“Did you flick those switches you put in?” asked Jason
“Sure did” replied Phil, as he flicked the six pointless ignition switches on and off along the row they made on the dashboard.
The key was cranked again and the faint sound of starter motor whining was heard, along with a metallic grinding sound.
“It’s F****ed” said Ken, promptly zipping the flap of his tent shut.
Phil bounced in his seat as he cranked the car over for a third time, the noises continued until the engine roared into life, chuffing wildly.
“Is that running right?” called a voice
“Sure is!” replied Phil, smiling even as he heard chuckling from the direction that the question came from.
“Sounds like something with the starter and gearbox, probably the same thing that stops us from reversing” said Simon
Phil just smiled “She’ll be alright, it’s probably the homemade clutch assembly and all that jazz, just needs a bit of TLC”
“Which we can’t do, it’s late enough as it is and we’ve got to try and get some sleep before this does our heads in”

So the brave British lads locked up their prized possession and went to their tents, Phillip was the only one with a single shred of optimism that night, because he’d bought this car and he was going to make damn sure that it finished the event, come hell or high water.

Phil slept in the back of the car that night and spent some time telling the car how well it was going to do, how they’d do their very best and when it was all said and done, how he’d take it back home to England to restore it.


#82

Sorry, I’m running a bit behind. I’m going to start from:

#Day -5

Stroppy McHorseguy, lead design of Gryphon Gear, stepped outside his glass-partitioned office, joints cracking as he stretched his shoulders. The view may be good, but there was something about the open space of the balcony overlooking the rest of the R&D and prototype warehouse that restored in him that extra pep, that bit of inspiration that allowed him to nut out those really troublesome details. Like how to shape the headlights so that they conformed to ADR 46/00 but were still consistent with the design language of an apocalyptic hypercar, not to mention slotted in just so they didn’t interrupt the airflow thr- just thinking about it more was giving him a headache. Time to look at the bigger picture, and that meant hunching over the railing, arms folded, with a vacant stare plastered over his face.

Not five seconds later, a certain Kai Kristensen, senior (he would like to think sole) test driver and ace (and actually sole factory) race driver, slouched next to him. He was putting on such nonchalant airs that Strop was convinced that he was thinking about something very specific, but of course, when it came to very specific things that Kai felt strongly about, talking to him about it was about as easy as talking to a girl who was mad at you but required you to read their mind as to why otherwise it didn’t count, or so Strop imagined. Not that Strop actually did have this problem with his girlfriend, which, in this case, merely meant that he wasn’t Kai-trained. Or was he?

“'sup Crash.” Strop opened with something safe and casual.

“Mmmm.” This was about expected.

“Something on your mind?”

“Mmmm.” Kai’s bottom lip pouted out an extra few millimeters, the sure tell, but naturally, no more sounds were forthcoming. Time to start the song and dance.

“Wanna talk about it?”

“It’s fine.” On cue, the shoulders hunched a little more. But also on cue, there was a little crack in the corner of his mouth and a twinkle in the corner of his eye. Strop did his best to keep his head forward, which was quite easy, actually, because his eyes being set where they were, he could easily look in all directions wherever his head was pointed.

“No seriously, we’ve been over this before, it’s no good if you don’t talk about what’s on your mind.”

“Mmm, I’m fine.”

There was silence for precisely three seconds. Then ninja fast (or so Strop liked to think), he lunged for Kai, who yelped and pulled back, leaving his legs wide open. Two seconds later, Strop was dangling Kai by the ankles over the railing.

“Come on, spit it out son, or I’ll shake it outta you!”

“Okay okay!” Kai yelled, drawing the stares of the crew machining parts for the new crash mule. He held his hands up, palms open. "I’ll tell! But you better pull your pants up first, you’re flashing the entire floor.

Strop looked down. Indeed, as everybody could clearly appreciate, his pants had fallen down, which was impossible since his pants were definitely buttoned up, except for the fact that they weren’t. What. By reflex, he started to bend over to pick them up-

“WAIT WAIT WAIT pull me back up first you dickhead or you’ll kill our only driver!” Now quite flustered, Strop swore a blue streak as he hauled Kai over and dumped him unceremoniously on the metal grating of the balcony, hopping clumsily out of view while pulling his pants up. After taking three times as long as he normally would while trying to shut out the howls of laughter coming from the floor below, he finally straightened up and fixed Kai with a death stare, but Kai was too busy playing with his phone to notice. Wait, was that his phone, or his phone.

“Aaaaaaaand send!” Kai handed Strop’s phone back to him. Strop looked at the screen, to find that it had just finished sending his girlfriend, E, a photo of his tighty whities clad butt with his pants round his ankle.

“Noooooooooo!” Strop clumped forward, ready to exact painful retribution of Kai, but Kai jumped and scampered vertially up the water pipe until he was perched on the air duct a good ten feet above. Strop was quite sure he could do it too, only if he did, the whole thing would probably collapse and kill everybody. “Get back here you asshole!” he snapped, knowing full well that it was futile. Kai laughed at him.

“You know, I was gonna tell you anyway. Next time maybe you should just ask.”


“You want to WHAT?” Strop doubletaked halfway through a mouthful of salad, spraying bits of half chewed lettuce on the table and over Kai.

Kai was too excited to even pay attention to the lettuce now on his hoodie. “I want to buy Toothless back!”

“But… but why!?”

“Because!” Kai grinned. “He’s not done yet, he’s still got one more ride in him, and until then I don’t think he’s going to rest!”

“Let me get this right.” Strop finished chewing, swallowed, took a breath, then stared at Kai. “You want to buy Toothless back. Then take it for a road trip. From which Toothless will certainly not return. And we’ll be riding in it.”

Kai nodded so vigorously his head left an afterimage.

“I-” Strop then thought about his next words, which would have been: “I think this is a dumb idea and you’re nuts.” But they knew that already, and he was a bit wary of any further redundancies leaving gaps for Kai to play tricks on him. He figured maybe it’d be easier to skip all the preamble and just agree to go. “Ok seriously for the record this is a dumb idea and you’re nuts but it’s not like me not going is going to make it any better, besides, if you die, Hannah will kill the rest of us.”

“Yay!” Kai flailed and then offered his fist. “Fistbump.” Strop rolled his eyes and offered his own fist. “Now let’s go find Toothless! Didn’t we sell him to that vegan hippie guy?”


#Day -3

Kai’s memory was correct. More precisely, they had sold Toothless for the princely sum of 500 bucks to the vegan hippie guy who had just then returned from Nepal, where he had spent his semester break alpaca herding. Something about broadening one’s horizons through experiences. And Free Tibet. And so the next day, they found themselves sitting in a Lentil As Anything outlet, with Strop eyeing the lentil curry while they kept watch for a tall lanky Caucasian male with brown dreads and a Bob Marley beanie and Che Guevara T-shirt, which was to say, about 50% of the clientele. But that was precisely the kind of guy who wouldn’t care what the car was like if it ran, and it was cheap. Which was just as well, since Toothless had been riced beyond all recognition, and had been given the Kai-approved Hoon-Toon, which was precisely the reason that GG decided he needed to get rid of it and replace it with that lovely unicorn piece, the Cisalpina Scattante. Which was why Strop was a bit surprised that the guy was willing to sell the car back, when he got it for so cheap.

“Umm, hi, excuse me.” A tall lanky caucasian guy with dreads and a Bob Marley hat and Che Guevara T-shirt slid into the seat opposite Strop and Kai. “Strop and Kai? I’m Devin, you sold me the… car.”

“Namaste,” Strop smirked. “Are you actually interested in selling us the car back?”

“Well, actually, yes, yes I am.” Devin fidgeted, clearly uncomfortable. “Well, it’s not like I actually want to sell the car, I mean, it’s all I got now but…”

“Oh no, what happened to my baby?” Kai leaned over the table, almost mashing his face into Devin’s stubbly one. “Did you crash? Did the hose burst? Is there rust? CV joint? IS HE OK???” Strop had to pull him back into his seat. “Sorry, Devin. Go on.”

“No, no, the car runs… fine. I was actually going to keep it and restore it a bit and convert to biofuel and give it a fresh coat of paint.” Strop immediately clamped his hand on Kai’s mouth, muffling out his enraged would-be screams of DON’T YOU DARE. “But?”

“But, you know the whole Centrelink robodebt thing?”

“Oh yeah, that.” Only the latest, biggest debacle in the Government’s ongoing War Against Poor And Young People, where about fifty thousand people were falsely accused of ripping off taxpayers via an automated letter. Strop could see where this was going now.

“Yeah, when I got back from Nepal I got this letter saying I owed them like two grand and I was shitting myself man, they said they overpaid my Newstart and they wanted it back or they were gonna send people over man. I’m freaking out! I don’t have two grand! And so I tried calling them but of course they wouldn’t answer and like, I dunno what I’m gonna do, all my housemates got the same letter too, we’re so broke.” Devin clasped his hands together. “Sorry man, I know it’s not, like, your problem, but, that money would be a lifesaver right now.”


And so it was that Toothless once again changed hands for precisely the same sum, five hundred bucks. It wouldn’t have gone for a cent more, not with its resplendent hand-painted flame decals, lidded green tinted headlights (of questionable road legality), completely stupid splitter and massive touring car wing, and of course, those hideous neon pink aftermarket rims, which had nothing to do with the Toothless aesthetic, which, apparently, was kind of the point according to Kai.

“Ahhh, feel the powah!” Kai quipped ironically, as he wove his way through the streets of inner-city Melbourne. Literally wove, because apparently he wasn’t paying any attention to the road, traffic, or pedestrians, much to the horror of Strop.

“Kai, you’re on the wrong side of the road OH MY GOD NOW WE’RE MOUNTING THE KERB and oh Jesus fucking Christ you almost ran that hipster over was that intentional keep in mind the last guy who went off his nut and ran people over in the city got shot and that WAS ONLY FOUR MONTHS AGO hoooooly shit seriously fucking stop it.”

drawn both by my partner in crime, Cen, and myself

As luck would have it, they managed to get back to the garage with no further incident, no police actually spotted them, and hopefully, by the time anybody would think to submit dashcam footage to the cops, the car would be very far away. And possibly defunct. It was time for the trip of Toothless’ lifetime.


#Day -1

“Okay dear, I’ll be back in four days!” Strop kissed E as he walked out the door.

“Be safe and look after Kai!” E waved him off. “And love you.”

“Love you too!” Err, yes. Safe. Look after Kai. Strop checked his suitcase one more time, loaded with four days worth of clothes (just in case), including his thermal fleece (again just in case), his trusty First Aid kit, some belts and ties, an extra power supply for his phone and two USB cables, and a few packets of instant food. Should be enough, hopefully. ID and passport, check. Papers and permits, check. Now he could only hope Kai was suitably prepared (which he very much doubted, but one can dream). Now, strategically, he would call the Taxi and ride to Kai’s place, because there was no fucking way he was showing E the car they planned to do this trip in.

Stepping out of the taxi, Strop immediately saw some reason for optimism: Kai’s girlfriend (fiancée? since Kai had sort-of-joking-not-joking proposed when they got back together and they still weren’t sure), Bianca, was just getting out of Toothless. She must be between expeditions.

“Hey, Bianca, good to see you again!” Strop said, for once without any trace of sarcasm or irony whatsoever.

“And dat’s how we roll, BIATCH!” Bianca drawled, pointing finger guns at Strop, whose face promptly fell as he realised she had been infected by the Kai virus. “Eh, sorry, Strop.” She corrected, resuming her normal Brit lilt. “It’s the car. Every time I ride in it, I feel like a gangster, and not the good kind.”

“Hey!” Kai pouted.

“You know full well that the only reason I’m approving of this trip is because I know it’s going to be the last time I ever see this car!” Bianca glared daggers at Kai. Then once again her expressioned softened as she kissed Kai on the cheek. “Now you drive safe, okay?”

“I will!” Kai nodded, again, very vigorously.

“Pfft. Yeah, right,” Strop snorted, before immediately regretting it as Bianca turned the dagger stare onto him. “You better be right.”

With that, Kai lugged the toolkit into the car, followed by a duffel bag that no doubt Bianca had insisted he bring along. Systems check, fuel check, kick the tyres check. The internals were 250,000km old and ratty and god knows what the bolt-on turbo had done to it, but as far as they were concerned, it was in a condition to at least start. Where it went from there, well, that was for them to hang on and find out.


ok I’ll come back and do Day 0 tomorrow, plus rehash all the important particulars. Things will be much briefer from here!


#83

Phil and the car’s love story: Still a better love story than Twilight


#84

#Team ‘Southend or Bust’
Original Post - Previous Post

The story so far: Three uni students back at it again on a driving-based excursion. This time they’re in an imported orange Erin Merna, and they’re really going to try to not annoy the rest of the competitors.

“I just want to know why you chose a smaller car” queried James, again.
“Because it was the best I could find” replied Martin, again.
“What, you couldn’t find another Berlose? There’s barely any space in this thing!” - James was getting frustrated now.
Martin turned to him, his face visibly annoyed. “James, this car is in great condition, it was cheap and I can fix it easily. That’s all that matters”.
Seb came over, eating some crisps. “Good fucking god you two. Why don’t you both get down on one knee and marry each other so you argue like the married couple you are”.
Both James and Martin turned to him, confused. They both knew how annoying they were being, yet somehow there was something slightly enjoyable about arguing.
“Screw this, I’m off to scout out the competition” said Martin. They had only just arrived, after all.

Martin came back a little while later. James and Seb had unpacked the tent and had some Radiohead playing out of the stereo. “What ho, Brabantio?” called Seb.
James burst out laughing, Martin paused, confused. “That’s a Shakespeare line, right?”
“Yep!” replied Seb, excitedly.
“I thought you were studying Geography?” asked James, still smiling. “Just never expected you to say that”.
“Mmm” mumbled Seb. “Anyway, what did you find Martin?”
Martin sat down having grabbed a can of something out of the boot. “Greasy Lightning are back, as are Twin-Snail. They’ve got a gorgeous Minerva this time, it’s in this dusty purple colour, and they apparently managed to get it in exchange for that Savage they were using last time, somehow”.
“Nice trade, I guess?” said James. “Let’s keep friendly with them, they were very helpful last time”.

“Yeah” Martin agreed. “There’s also some 80s silver wagon thing, plus an Ankomst Bil”
“A what?” asked Seb.
“An Ankomst Bil” - Martin struggled a bit to say it “Trust me, you’ll know when you see it, it looks like it sounds. They were the guys making a load of noise when they arrived, seems like they’ve got exhaust problems”
James chuckled. “Let’s hope that stays with them. Anything else worth noting?”
“There’s a red Bamford Advance which you can’t miss, and, er, the guys from Gryphon Gear”

Seb laughed. “Are they pretending to be them or something?”. James joined in.
Martin smiled awkwardly. “No, really. It’s them”.
Seb and James stopped. “What?” they asked?
“No kidding, Stroppy and Kai Kristensen are actually over there in one of those tents”

Seb’s heart sank a little. He’d always loved Le Mans and endurance racing in general; his dad took him to Le Mans when he was 8, where he had watched the likes of Dimension, Erin, KHT and Meliora battle it out in the LMP1 category. Last year, while AMWEC was on, he and the guys had been running a bet on who would win, and Seb had chose to back the GG-Znopresk team. James and Martin had thought he was mad, until they won every single race that season. Ever since, he’d been a massive fan of Mr Kristensen.

“I have to meet him” he blurted out suddenly. The other two turned to look at him. Seb got up immediately and headed over. “He’s my hero guys, come on!”.
Martin and James looked at one another and shrugged. “Just be ready for the car they’re driving” warned Martin…


#85

TEAM OUTRIDERS

Day -1 Final leg of transit from Tatum Heights, MI to starting point:

Marc: I can’t believe you let that stupid d— in the car!

Luigi: I’m right here you know!

Marc: Wouldn’t have said anything if you weren’t.

Blake: Settle down you two, I brought Luigi along because I figured he could be a big help.

Marc: What’s he gonna do? Have his mob buddies fix the competition?

Luigi: I oughta have the mob whack you.

Marc: How about I call Homeland Security and have them deport your ass?

Luigi: What? Too cheap to buy me a ticket back to Italy? Big surprise!

Marc: (to Blake) You know he’s a spy right?

Blake: Oh really?

Marc: Yup. He came here to spy on us for Mussolini. Only he was too stupid to realize that when he came over in '89, Mussolini had been dead for 46 years! So he figured “I guess I can changa the oil!” And that’s how our headache began.

Luigi: Shut up before I force feed you a ham sandwich!

Blake: Man, I can’t imagine how you two would be if you actually hated each other.

Marc: Oh God, that reminds me, the new kid in the Parks department called HR on us.

Blake: What?

Luigi: Yeah, we were going back and forth like we usually do, and he goes on like “You can’t say shit like that! That’s wildly inappropriate!”

Marc: It’s a good thing Lisa knows the two of us. It was nuts!

Blake: That’s insane.

Marc: Now, why are we in this old jalopy again?

Blake: It survived the Roulette Runner, it can survive anything. I christen this car “Keith Richards”

Marc: Obviously you did some work on the motor.

Blake: Um, no I didn’t. I mean I wanted to, but the rebuild kit was on back order.

Marc: What? No, that’s impossible, this sounds way to good to be the same motor.

Blake: Well, I didn’t rebuild that engine, I never said it was still in the car.

Marc: Ah, that explains the deeper exhaust note, where’d you get a motor?

Blake: From the Stag Big Chief that was sitting in my backyard waiting on a new bed.

Marc: Jesus! Is that safe?

Blake: No, not at all.

Marc: That’s a 432, that thing’s enormous!

Blake: Yet still fit in the car, along with the transmission. Ironically less power, but enough torque we could pull down a telephone pole.

Luigi: If we were so inclined. I also picked up some spare brake parts and wheels for cheap off the city auction site. She’s now sporting Gen IV brakes and 17" wheels. Cop tires of course.

Marc: Hot damn! You guys went all out. How many miles on the motor?

Blake: 121,000 mostly highway. I used it to haul wood.

Marc: Man, I’m looking forward to this.

Day 0: Arrival at starting point.

Luigi: We made it!

Marc: I’m surprised, given that you drive like an old bitch!

Luigi: Forgive me for not having a badge to abuse while speeding! Maybe I’ll pick one up if I can find one for a good price.

Blake: We made it, that’s the important thing. Let’s get camp set up.

(The three men set to work putting up three individual pup tents, getting a fire going, and cooking dinner, in this case hot dogs.)

Luigi: Bah! More of this kosher shit!

Marc: Hey, feel free to starve if you want. Sorry we don’t have any cholesterol in marinara sauce for you.

(Luigi responds by letting Marc know he’s “Number One”

Blake: I always liked beef franks better anyway.

(The attention of the three men was immediately caught by the sound of a revving engine with no muffler)

Marc: Excuse me.

(Marc walks over to Team Clutch Droppers badge in hand)

Marc: Gentlemen! I trust you’ll get that exhaust leak fixed by morning?

(I would like to see TheBobWiley’s response to this.)


#86

The Cowys

Ram: You already met me in the Roulette Runner with Evan in Team Yokai. The-metalhead-now-Monstercat-loving teen is back!

Nomade: You can call me Nomad or Nomade, it depends on where are you from, that’s how most people call me anyway. I’m a lover of the road, my motto is: “the road is my home”, the place I feel most comfortable is behind a wheel and three pedals. From where I came, Brazil, we don’t have much racing, most of it are drag racing or turismo for rich guys, so I learned how to race at the streets. I like every kind of car, because any car can be a race car, if you have the guts to race it.
Today I live in Europe, moving from country to country, and for now I’m staying with Ram.

■a month before start day■

Ram
Now we’d got the Surge in this faded orange back to our house. The clearcoat was peeling and the inside smelled seriously dusty but that wasn’t that surprising. I had no idea what to do with the car.

Saturday. About noon. I’m more bored than a coed that does porn instead of study stuck at a lecture on marine biology. Anyway, it’s blimmin hot and there’s no breeze. I’m a Norwegian, this isn’t weather, this is hell. Nomade of course is Brazilian so he’s largely unfazed by the conditions. He’s not even at home at the moment. I’m just lying here dying, slowly turning into a limp sack of dehydrated potatoes when a car crunches to a halt outside. Turning to my side, I jumped up and looked out. Nomade was back and there was something oddly shaped covered in a black cloth in the trailer. Taking the stairs down two at a time I grabbed the door handle before Nomade even reached the door. “'sup?” I quizzed, stepping out to inspect this black lump closely. He grinned and said just one word. “Odyssey.” Turning to look at him I felt the shit-eating grin growing on my face as well. “Oh yes, son.” He replied, “are you thinking​ what I’m thinking? You know where this is going?” Not even bothering to reply I put my hand up for a solid high five. This was going to be a right hoot even if things went wrong.

Nomade
Before we get ahead of ourselves we need to take a moment to plan and collect our wits. Ram was taking a look around the car, tapping body panels and checking on brakes and for broken glass and stuff like that. wew He let out a long whistle. “Any idea why this was so cheap? It’s not even in that bad of a condition, honestly.” I had to think for a moment but there wasn’t too much to it really. “It was always an affordable sports car, but nothing exotic. Unique but not insane. Like the V6, it’s meant to cater to it’s own niche but if you look at the mounting points Gamma has engineered it to suit the amateur mechanic as well. It’s simple but effective. Coincidentally it happens to be similar to the Odyssey engine as well in dimensions and mount locations, stuff like that. If you take out the engine it came with, people don’t see the appeal in the purchase anymore because it seems like a project car. Which makes it perfect for both us and anyone who wants a fantastic cheap quick car.”

Ram chuckled. “Funny how V6 minivans seem to always be inevitable for me, heh. Alright, I’ll get the tape and marker, let’s start measuring.”

Ram
UNNGBHH​ fuck my back. Holy fucking mother of sweet baby raptor Jesus why did I agree to this engine swap. That cunt of an engine weighed like several hundred kilos and swinging it about and aligning it and then doing up all the bolts to the right torque specs… hellish but fun in a masochistic way. Now we’ve a week to nurture ourselves back to health and we’re off on a drive to the start point. The engine is in, it runs, the fuel system, oil and cooling are hooked up. Spare battery ready. Lots of small parts and filters and shit also available. The interior needs a good once-over with a vacuum cleaner and we’ll be good to go.

After all that trouble that’s the car for you to see:


#87

Team Mountain Pass

Day -1

Working for Mountain Pass is hard work. Usually I’m stuffed into the back of an overpriced SUV, trying to snap pics of 'roid rager spec hot hatches or slideways coupes, with naught but my digital SLR between me and the blurred tarmac. So when I was sent over to the USA to build a car for the 24hrs of LeMons I felt my suffering for my art had been vindicated. Then the editors rang and made me aware of their secret plan: The LeMons car had to be ready for the Grand Tour as well!

I had just completed the various modifications to the ex-taxi Ambassador I’d sourced; Bogliq’s are cheap here in the US as they just weren’t embraced as a local, despite being built in a factory on US soil to this day! I hadn’t had time to fully shakedown the car so when I went to pick up Pierre and Andrew from the airport I was annoyed to notice that the ABS light was on and that under moderate braking there was a vibration coming from the front wheels… Damn!!! There was no time to worry about it though, the tour started tomorrow and there was no time for me to pull the wheels off and check.

Day One

Everyone piled into the car early in the morning so we could head out to the State Park starting line and ensure we had plenty of time to size up our competition as well as get ourselves signed off by the Tour’s organisers. The Bogliq was in fine form, a little slow but purring like a kitten. As soon as we arrived Pierre and Andrew scarpered in different directions to scope out the talent and I did a final check of all the Ambassador’s vitals and all seemed to be in order so I moved the car into position, ready for the Tour to begin…


#88

Between Strop’s drawing and Bobloblaw’s dialogue, I’m dying over here.


#89

I’ll just ‘air’ this little bit of information: If people do the loud music thing this time, Luke has a three-tone surprise under the hood of the Midnight.

Not that I’m discouraging such things, though. The air horns will be used, probably rather very often. And beware tunnels, because I’ve got ‘low’ and ‘high’ modes for volume…


#90

Oh believe me there will be air horn and loud music from over here.


#91

Just remember that Marc Levinstein is a cop, and has no qualms about notifying local authorities.


#92

Previous Post || Next Post

Team: Clutch Droppers

Day 0 - response

After pulling into the Park and making complete fools of ourselves with the unmuffled exhaust, we were feeling pretty good. However, just after we finished parking some older dude from one of the other camps came over to us. He had a badge in his hand and wanted to know why our car was so loud.

Now if he had not had a badge we would have ribbed him a bit about being some “old man” that can’t handle how awesome our car is. But having respect… and fear… for officers of the law we all came to attention real quick.

Bob: O, I am sorry officer, I think the muffler came unhooked as we were pulling into the park area, we will get it fixed before the start of the race tomorrow. We have a pretty crappy exhaust on this thing and it is giving us some trouble… sir.

Jason and Ryan: snickering at my groveling Yes sir, we will get it looked at first thing in the morning, but we are beat for the day.

As the officer walked away we gave each other stupid/scared smiles.

Bob: I guess the fun police are in town… which may make our balls-out strategy a bit dangerous. O well, we will deal with it as it comes.


Day 1 - Morning

In order to get the car ready for the first leg of the journey, we decided to wake up at the crack of dawn, about 5:30 am. The first thing we did was get our fire from the previous night relit and start cooking up some bacon and eggs. When we stopped in Seattle the day before we picked up a few perishable items for today’s meals, knowing they would not keep very well in the car. Last night’s low temperature kept our bacon and eggs cool enough to cook up for breakfast, which made for a pleasant start to the day. Once breakfast was wrapped up we topped off the car’s oil yet again and quickly clamped the exhaust pipe back to the muffler to keep Officer No-Fun, happy.

After some final pre-flight checks were done and last night’s emptied beer cases were discarded, we were ready for the race to get underway. Although, the aforementioned numerous empty beer cases were making it more difficult than usual to function so early in the morning. The thrill of the coming days was enough to keep Ryan and I focused, cutting through the haze and weariness of the past few days.


#93

Previous

Team Riot Uncontrol Day -X

Aaron finally lifted his head out the trunk.
“And can we put our things in it ?” Paul asked.
“Mrghrg Mrgh”
“The Gasmask Aaron”
Quickly Aaron lifts the Mask
“When all the bleach drys, yes. I wouldn’t put food into it though”
“We got the whole backseat for that”
“Sure. Did you check the engine "
“YES, I have and I even improved the car !”
Aaron slaps his forehead
“What have you done…”
“I hoped you gonna ask this !”
Happy like a child on Christmas eve, Paul climbed into the driving seat.
“Listin to this”


“HEHEHEHE”
Paul was giggeling like a school girl
“You spend 4 hours on a new horn ?”
Aaron was not impressed with the work of his brother
“OH COME ON. At least i manged to get it installed”
“4 hours ?”
“Well first i read the instruction in French, which was complicated, then i saw the German one, but that was butchered in translation and THEN”
Aaron interrupted " FOUR HOURS”
“It was hard okay…”
Aaron goes to the open hood and takes a look into the engine bay.
“Start the engine”
“Huh?”
“Start the car”
“Um Sure”, with that Paul turns the ignition key.

“Yep… Nice Work”
The horn still proceeds to loop itself.
“You can stop it now.”
The car and with that the horn stops
“So what now Aaron ?” Paul asked
Aaron removes his gloves and throws them into Paul’s Face.
" I gonna get some coffee and then another one…"


#94

(Preface: those of you who have not done your intros and wish to do so and RP up to the driver’s meeting, go ahead and do so in your next post)

Drivers’ Meeting, Friday, 11:00am

“Good morning to you all, and welcome to the Kinda Grand Tour! I see we’ve got all kinds of rides here. Less of a car show and more of a graveyard. That’s exactly how we like it!” the event chair smiled at all the participants, barely holding back a cackle. “We’re passing out the waypoint sheets now. You must check in at and take a picture with your car at each of the required points on this list. Pretty much everything else is up to you. There is no group camp. No requirements on how, when, or where you rest, as long as it’s legal. There will be two winners at the end; the team that makes it the full distance the fastest, and the team that makes it the full distance closest to the average time. At the end, there will be food, fun, and festivities. So get your junkers ready, hold 'em together, and we’ll see you at the end!”

(The event organizers proceed to line up all of the cars at the park exit. A few minutes before the start, they block off the cross-traffic from the left so that all cars can make it unimpeded on to the first road. At noon, the flag drops…)

Legend of Terms:

TBDC: Time Block Distance Covered. This is the amount of mileage covered during the current 2 hour period.
ODC: Overall Distance Covered. This is the total distance that the team has covered since Noon on Friday
MRL: Morale modifier
FTG: Fatigue Level
Notes: Any notes I have for your team during this time block. Including POI results, car issues, etc.

Friday, Noon - 2PM

Weather Conditions: 63 degrees, partly cloudy.

This first section ran down I5 to SR20, west to the Coupeville ferry terminal. All teams made it on to the Salish, avoiding a 45 minute wait for the second ferry.

VicVictory:
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, last row of vehicles at the stern.

@yurimacs
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, last row of vehicles at the stern.

@Vri404
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@Madrias
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, amidships

@BobLoblaw
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@CriticalSet9849
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +1 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@BailsMackenzie
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +1 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@Mikonp7
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, amidships.

@TheBobWiley
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@DeusExMackia
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

@HighOctaneLove
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

@strop
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the bow.

@stm316
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, amidships.

@JohnWaldock / @Sillyducky
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, amidships.

@abg7
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

@rileybanks
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +1 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, first row of the bow.

@koolkei / @FrankNSTein
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, first row of the bow.

@Rk38
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

@Nomade0013 / @ramthecowy
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

@SkylineFTW97
TBDC: 86 mi OD: 86 mi MRL: +2 FTG: +0 Notes: Passed POI (Deception Pass Bridge). Currently docked at Coupeville Terminal, loaded on the ferry M/V Salish, near the stern.

Team Greasy Lightning

Team/Car info

“C’mon, Fuzz. Take the picture and let’s get out of here!” Jen barked.

“Hold your horses, sis! Perfection takes time.”

“We don’t have time. We’ve got to get to the ferry dock before it leaves! It’s a 45 minute wait for the next boat!”

Fuzz snapped the shot and bolted for the car. He was barely down, the door not even closed, before Rick slammed his foot on the pedal and the turbocharged Suzume engine whizzed to life. Fuzz slammed the door shut and laughed. “No leaving me behind, Jen. Dad would be pissed.”

“He’ll get over it,” she snorted. “And maybe you’ll finally learn who’s boss.”

“You think you can take me?”

“No, I know I can. Hey Rick, want to take a picture of me putting him in a headlock and giving him a noogie?”

Rick smirked. “Maybe later. We’ve got a boat to catch.” He carefully attenuated the throttle with his foot; the Chancellor’s cruise control system couldn’t be adapted to the Suzume engine, thus control was a rather artistic endeavor. “So where’s the first checkpoint again?”

“Fort Worden State Park,” Fuzz blurted before Jen could reach for the waypoint list. "It’s supposed to be close to the dock on the other side of the water.

“Right. Onward!”


#95

##Team Artiseros

Ernie: Well its go time.It is partly cloudy.

Aldren: When that guy said “the team that makes it the full distance the fastest or closest to the average time”,
that probably means the end of our journey before we start.

Ernie:Ahhh shut it Aldren! The point of this challenge is to just enjoy the whole journey,not just to win and all those stuff.

Aldren: I suppose your right.Say we dont have a cassette,but i bought a small radio with a couple of CD’s.

Ernie: Go play it! It is kinda getting boring

Aldren:OK

Aldren puts a disc in


Ateri: What is this shit?(waking up from drunkness)

Aldren:looks at back seats oh just music

Ateri: Bah! Would rather listen to Eurobeat or something drinks sake.

Ernie: Quit whining over there! Buckle up boys,the trip has just started.
Aldren puts next disc






Miles have passed for the trio in their convertible just the usual, then they stopped and took a picture of the view when they were on the Deception Pass Bridge





Aldren: Its probably time to go catch that boat.With that car developing less than 100 hp we probably wont make it.

Ernie: Not without me on the driver’s seat

The trio rushed to the boat,just in time to be with a pack of cars which seems to forego the same journey


##At the boat

car gets in the ferry

turns off engine

Ernie: Well,we made it in time.There seems to be a bunch of cars in the ferry,they probably must be going in the same challenge.

Aldren: Probably with faster cars.

Ernie: Whatever! Hey Ateri! You ok?
(Sees thumbs up from Ateri in the mirror of the car)

Aldren:He seems to be fine.(jokingly said)

(Aldren and Ernie gets out of the car)

Ernie:sniffs Fresh air indeed of lovely America.

Aldren: There must be a place where we can buy something in this ferry.

Ernie: Maybe.Let go ahead and explore then.
(hears murmurs of other groups)

Aldren: From what i hear from these people,the checkpoint is probably near the dock.

Ernie:Well that means we are closer to having good rest.

Aldren:

And so the trio are going be in a wait,curious whats going to be in the other side.

next chapter coming soon

Team & Car info


#96

Team Mountain Pass

Friday, Day One, Noon to 2pm

Team Mountain Pass

Since I had already adjusted the Ambassador’s controls and seat to suit my driving position, Pierre and Andrew decided to leave me in place and take the first stint at the wheel. Andrew called shotgun and proceeded to search for the most obnoxious radio stations he could find and Pierre plotted our course from the backseat. The first run to the ferry was an easy one with no competitors having any issues and we arrived at the ferry without incident. Since the brake shimmy hasn’t worsened I’ve decided to not worry so much about it for the moment but I plan to take off the front wheels at the end of the day today (if we have time) and check the pads and the rotors…

Man, riding the ferry is boring! We ended up watching the water, to stave off any queasiness, and mentally prepared ourselves for the long road ahead.

Distance required: 86 miles
Distance covered: 86 miles
Morale: +2 (Boats are fun!)
Fatigue: Nil (Early days yet)