By on May 21, 2009

The über-wealthy have many fascinating ways to speed on America’s highways, from night-vision goggles to convenient spotter planes overhead. But those of us who toil in the middle class have to earn our velocity by hard graft. Freeway speeding is the crack cocaine of fast-road driving—cheap, easy, addictive, and deadly—and nighttime freeway speeding is both more glamorous and annoying than its daytime counterpart.

Once the sun goes down, we can do a lot more of that left-lane passing which is so near and dear to the hearts of wannabe Europeans, thanks to a trick I call “Poor Man’s Takedown.” Cop cars have “takedown” lights: high beams which flash alternately. We can simulate the effect as follows: While coming up behind traffic in the left lane, switch to parking lights only. When you are a few hundred feet back, flash your brights three or four times, producing the “takedown” effect. As Billy Dee Williams would say, “It works every time,” primarily because it startles Toyota drivers into yielding the lane before their natural territorial instincts can assert themselves.

We don’t use the shoulder at night unless we have to. Confused deer, abandoned cars, and discarded retreads tend to hide out there. In the event that a lane-changing fellow motorist leaves us with no safe lane choice and no time to slow the car, it’s occasionally possible to simply split the lane on the side away from the lateral direction of the lane change. If you are swift enough with it, you might even keep your mirrors.

The time will come when, despite our best efforts to look ahead, watch brake lights, and use our Valentine Ones, we will be clocked. At this point, we have two useful options. We can pull over and wait for the nice policeman, right there across the road from his clocking point (this will sometimes earn us some goodwill), or we can run.

It isn’t really “running” until the cop is directly behind us with his lights on. That’s a felony, and I advise against it. Until then, it’s merely additional speeding, spiced up with some unwarranted direction-changing. When we decide to perform said additional speeding, we need to absolutely abandon the idea of getting where we were going. That’s no longer important. Instead, we need to perform three important tasks.

Task one is breaking visual contact. As long as the cop can see us, we are toast. So it’s time to boogie. Most police sedans with light bars can’t break 120 mph, so we want to get to that speed or better immediately. We look ahead, not behind, or we will surely drive right into the back of a lane-wandering minivan full of multicultural children stroking crippled kittens and singing “Kumbaya.” We can check our mirrors in the gaps between traffic.

With Task One accomplished, it’s time to multiply possibilities. The police handbooks indicate that fleeing drivers almost always turn right. So we get off the freeway and turn left. If we have enough clear air and we aren’t driving something like a lime green Audi S5 or other memorable car, we can cross the median and join the lawful traffic heading in the other direction. If that’s too much to ask, get off the freeway . . . but do it quickly. We keep our speed up, using the techniques I’ll cover in Part III, and we make multiple direction changes.

After a few of these, it’s time to abandon the whip. We get out of the car and walk away. A gas station is fine for this, a restaurant is better, a car lot is best of all. If you have, ahem, a new Ford Flex, why not drive into a Ford dealership and park in a line of them?  Then get away from the car. Guess what? If they can’t prove we were driving the car, we have a fighting chance in court.

If the police manage to catch us, we say we didn’t see them and that we always drive like a maniac. This abject confession of putative stupidity saved, um, a friend of mine from a beating after he led the Ohio Highway Patrol on a 120+ mph chase down Route 71 in a Lotus Seven clone. Sorry, officer! Didn’t see you back there! Gimme the ticket, I’ll sign it!

In cities, we return to the scene of the crime. Police search in an outward circle that expands with time. The one place they won’t be is the place where the search started, so we go there, using left turns. Needless to say, we don’t go speeding with weed, Ecstasy, firearms, or illegal immigrants in the car, because one felony charge at a time is enough.

In Part III, we will learn how to drive back roads at outrageous speeds.

[Click here to read Part I or Part III of the series. Note: as these editorials have triggered some strong emotions, I've turned off our no-flaming the website/author policy. Ish. I reserve the right to douse particularly egregious examples, in an entirely first amendment friendly sort of way]

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95 Comments on “Maximum Street Speed Explained, Part II...”


  • avatar
    Billy Bobb 2

    That was a long way to state “I have a death wish”.

  • avatar
    mattstairs

    I know that I would never do this (not that I have a vehicle that I could attempt this in), but man, this is fun to read!

  • avatar

    That one should break the record of replies … Vintage TTAC, politically incorrect to the max, and fun to read

  • avatar

    Remember the golden rule –

    You might be able to outrun a car – but you can never outrun a Motorola.

    I know several loony motorcycle riders who like to run (crucially, they run, but they don’t hide), and many have felt the wrath of the impromptu roadblock.

  • avatar
    essen

    Jack, how would you feel if someone who practices what you preach hit a car carrying Michelle and Jack III?

  • avatar
    roadscholar

    “multicultural children stroking crippled kittens and singing Kumbaya”, best line I’ve read this week. Hilarious.

  • avatar
    TaurusGT500

    …. still trolling.

    …. Nothing to see here…move along and DFTT

  • avatar
    rosic

    I’ve been reading TTAC for a couple of months and have been too lazy to register until this morning.
    Yesterdays “Speeding” article bothered me, but I let it go. Freedom of speach and all that fun stuff. Today though, I’m totally outraged. Anybody that follows these directions is going to kill somebody, and it probably won’t be themselves. The person they kill will be somebody’s dad. If it’s a young father, that means there’s probably a mother at home and maybe some children.
    True story: in the late 80’s I was on my way home from an Elton John concert (yeah, I know, but she wanted to go.) We were north bound on route 495 in Massachusetts. I was motoring along at probably 70 miles an hour, it was late and traffic was moving along fairly well. Out of nowhere a large “S” class Mercedes came up behind us. He had to be traveling no less that 110, and he was following the rules as outlined in these last two speeding articles.
    20 miles up the road, the traffic had come to a screaching halt. They had to close the highway so life flight could land. When we finally passed the scene, the Mercedes that had passed us was on it’s roof, there were two other cars that I could see that were totaled. There were at least three bodies in the road covered by blankets awaiting an ambulance for transport.
    No matter how you want to justify it, driving as these articles describe is not only irresponsible and reckless, but quite often fatal.
    I know that TTAC wants to be like Car & Driver was in it’s heyday, but even in their heyday the would have never been so irresponsible as to publish an article like this.

  • avatar
    fallout11

    Well said Bertel, another great and classic TTAC post. I still remember the old days.

    I’ll admit to having successfully “evaded” a would-be ticketing LE on a couple of occasions, but mainly due to a lot of luck (was far enough ahead when he turned in after me to break line of sight, then a quick detour down a rural side road, or, in one case, into my own side-entry garage and dropped the door).
    As a general rule, they will attempt to close the gap and may even follow you for a short bit before switching on the lights. If you can disappear before that happens, you are usually free. However once the lights go on, the lion has just caught you the gazelle, deal with it.

  • avatar
    Robstar


    TaurusGT500 :
    May 21st, 2009 at 7:12 am

    …. still trolling.

    …. Nothing to see here…move along and DFTT

    Quoted For Truth. Nothing to see here in this “editorial”, move along…

  • avatar
    Jordan Tenenbaum

    I know you live in Ohio, Jack, and I think you’re fucking crazy for driving triple digit speeds at night with all the deer we have. 71 is full of them, as well as 90.

  • avatar
    PeregrineFalcon

    I’m wondering which song to sing. The classic “Troll, Troll, Troll Your Boat” or the modern remix of the Limp Bizkit song, “Trollin\'”.

  • avatar
    RickCanadian

    This guy (or some idiot following his crack cocaine-driven advice) is going to kill somebody one of these days. Hey, RF, how is that going to make TTAC look then?

    I’m outta here. I really enjoyed this website, but this is way too much. My girlfriend got killed because of some dumbass who thought it would be fun to race in the highway, alla Jack Baruth. She was one of those people for whose life Jack Baruth doesn’t give a shit, driving her old-and-not-cool car on her lane at the speed limit, when this guy in a sporty-uber-cool Mustang lost control and made the lives of many people miserable for her loss.

    I like TTAC, but I don’t belong here with Jack Baruth. This is not just “politically incorrect”; people is going to die because of this. And Robert Farago, you will be partly responsible for that.

  • avatar
    JellyMunchkin

    “And in Part IV, we will learn how to avoid all this unnecessary driving by simply duct-taping multicultural kids and kittens to the ground and running them over! (But it’s *funny* because they’re ‘multicultural’. HAHAHA!)”

    Seriously… much of the content of this site lately has been about building and maintaining its brand. “What should our new logo look like?” “Can we move to a subscription-based model?” Hem, haw. Hem, haw. And, after all of that, an “editorial” like this debases the brand faster than Mr. Baruth can kill an innocent “Toyota driver.”

    In a word, absurd. Goodbye.

  • avatar

    There is nothing morally wrong with speeding nor is there anything inherently dangerous. It’s against the law in the U.S. It’s not against the law on (certain parts of) the German autobahn. Believe it or not, but German statistics show that driving fast has nothing to do with accidents. Most happen off the autobahn and in the city anyway. Germany’s fatal accidents are at an all time low.

  • avatar
    AuricTech

    But those of us who toil in the middle class have to earn our velocity by hard graft.

    What does “the act of taking advantage of one’s position, esp. a political position, to gain money, property, etc. dishonestly” have to do with driving recklessly?

  • avatar
    slateslate

    lol, I want to see a speed demon/passive-aggressive off between this guy and that Robert J. Stern or whoever he was from a couple of weeks ago.

  • avatar
    durailer

    I don’t support reckless driving, but many of Jack’s advanced techniques can be used at conventional driving speeds -potentially to protect your life and those around you in an emergency situation. Most North American drivers are sorely lacking in these skills.

    Aside from that, Jack’s “poor man’s takedown” trick will really come in handy against all those left-lane leeroys out there -on a sparsely trafficked freeway what harm would that cause?

  • avatar
    Jeff Puthuff

    @ AuricTech, graft is also British slang for work; labor.

  • avatar
    thetopdog

    Great series of Editorials Jack. I love ‘em. I wish you would elaborate more on evading police though, I’ve often thought about it but I don’t feel like I know nearly enough about how to really get away with it to make an attempt. Even though the top speed of my car is about 60mph more than that of a Police Interceptor, an Orange Corvette is about as hard to hide out in as a Lime Green Audi S5. In the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere, does it really work to just park your car somewhere and ditch it? When can you feel safe retrieving the car? Will the car even be there when you come back for it?

  • avatar
    windswords

    Bertel, please. On the Autobahn they don’t pass on the right, they don’t pass on the shoulder, and they don’t abandon their car after getting chased by the police. Don’t you see the difference? The Autobahn is a controlled environment and everyone knows what the deal is. This guy is telling us how to do it where a. it’s not allowed and b. where the other drivers are unwilling and unknowing participants of his “hard graft”.

  • avatar
    ttacgreg

    Somewhere on the net I found a video of this type of driving being done on the Autobahn. Having personally logged several thousand miles there made the video all the more frightening.
    Even with autobahn drivers’ darn good (but far from perfect) lane discipline, there is still an element of viscous inertia to lane use that forces one to back off, but I digress. This video shows the driver passing on the right and the shoulder and shooting tight gaps between vehicles. Utterly astounding, and at astounding speeds. Think this article’s described situations with another 60 mph added in.

  • avatar
    walkwalkfast

    @rosic @JellyMunchkin

    From ‘Maximum – Part I’
    “If you are interested in exploring the upper limits of this possibility, read on. If you find this idea morally, legally, ethically or spiritually repugnant; please return to your regularly scheduled bailout coverage.”

    I found the article(s) entertaining, like several above; a literary equivalent to a particularly chasey episode of COPS (now Street Patrol, of course), but, if I may be so bold, shuddering to think it would serve as a manual for Alex Roy wannabes, or disregard the horrors @rosic wrote of (one can get a large enough dose of reality at Liveleak), I’d guess that (car) people on the whole are far more responsible, and more to the point, said people have the greatest interest to stay safe in order to do what they love to do. There are enough out there who take no stock.

    Great site.

    /often a visitor, rarely a commentor

  • avatar
    Robstar

    I’d like to see Mr. Baruths editorial for outrunning one of these police officers

  • avatar
    kewells

    Can we get a post for tips on driving drunk?

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    You have to be carefull on Canadian highways. Past two major accidents were RCMP officers pulling u-turns on the highway in attempts to catch some speeder going 15 over. They are U-Turning without looking. Dangerous stuff.

  • avatar
    JellyMunchkin

    I’d guess that (car) people on the whole are far more responsible

    This article serves as a direct refutation of that statement.

  • avatar
    chuckR

    For an antidote to this series, please visit Kelly Grayson’s excellent blog, A Day in the Life of an Ambulance Driver. If you do go there, be sure to also read the Winter Wings entry for the best damn writing ever on early morning duck hunting. Grayson knows how to use his deadly weapons appropriately. Unlike some others I could name.

  • avatar
    Kurt.

    @essen (et al),

    Unless you have personally seen JB in his ’95 Porsche breaking the law, you have nothing to report. I would encourage you to read the Constitution of the United States, specifically the first Amendment.

    Although he is giving advice that is not advisable to follow, he is not telling you to go out and do it. It is no different than explaining how to hit your target when shooting a firearm (breath control, aim, trigger squeeze etc). The instruction is there, it doesn’t mean you should go climb a clock tower and shoot at the “…lane-wandering minivan full of multicultural children stroking crippled kittens and singing “Kumbaya.”!”

    If this is your answer to the best way of dealing with people you disagree with, be prepared to spend your time (and expense) with slander lawsuits and false statement charges.

  • avatar
    tonycd

    I don’t have the guts to do this stuff myself but. . .

    The reason there are articles like this at all (and books — I’ve read a couple) is the universal understanding that America’s traffic enforcement system is not fundamentally built for your safety. It’s a money machine. Turning over someone to the money machine because they want a way around it just shows the kind of lockstep conformity the zombies depend on.

    Too bad our elected officials don’t have the guts to just step forward and ask for tax increases. Instead we let them (yes, it’s our fault as voters for letting them) perpetuate this fiction that we’ll get our money from the chumps passing through from the next town. Of course, the next day we pass through THEIR town. Who’s kidding whom?

  • avatar
    walkwalkfast

    @JellyMunchkin

    This article serves as a direct refutation of that statement.

    That’s quite a leap. I guess we are all just an article away from Two-Lane Blacktop ’09.

  • avatar
    jbyrne

    Jack,

    You wouldn’t happen to be in your 20s would you? If you want to drive fast then buck up the money and drive on the track where everybody signs up for the risk you decide to take. I can only hope you end up as a road smear and don’t take anybody with you.

    I usually advocate attacking the ideas rather than the person but in this case I’d rather just call Jack an asshole. If you want to revoke my TTAC membership for this flame then so be it.

    TTAC,

    WTF?

    Jason

  • avatar

    I’m not a goody two shoes by any stretch of the imagination when it comes to minding the speed limit, BUT… Perhaps it is because I live in the (wild) west, where empty roads are still pretty easy to find. It bothers me that Mr. Baruth keeps talking about engaging in this activity around so many other cars. Often in very close proximity. I’m not going to chide him, as so many other commentators have for the “might kill people” angle, so much as “why risk it?” Punishing people for what “might” happen is absurd, and until MADD came along we did not do it in this country. (Or if we did, the courts eventually tossed out the laws that allowed it.) I accept risk as soon as I sit in my car. I drive as if my life were on the line anytime other cars are near. It doesn’t matter if Jack is coming up behind me at 130 MPH, or the guy next to me is trying to tie his necktie while sipping his latte at 55 MPH… both activities could result in my death if I am oblivious to them.

    Among my personal hard and fast rules regarding speeding is: Never pass another car at a delta greater than 20-25 MPH. Ideally two lanes away. I never travel at triple digit speeds unless I’m ALONE. Once any other cars are in sight, I slow down. The sole exception to that rule for me used to be Montana, in the unrestricted days, because at least there the other drivers were OK with the situation. Otherwise the margins of error, yours and theirs, get way too thin.

    So Jack, how about stating the obvious? Get yourself to a rural county in some vast empty western state where the population is measured in hundreds and the square miles are measured in thousands. You can find roads out (t)here where you’ll never see another sole and you can drive as fast as you want. Everyone wins. If you screw up or a mule deer meets your bumper at 160 MPH, it won’t matter. Next summer when the road-striping crew comes through they’ll call out the Highway Patrol to scrape up the remains and mail them home. No harm, no foul, except for the driver (and the deer of course.)

    As for the meta-discussion going on in the comments, Kurt said it best: Re-read the Bill of Rights folks. The whole concept of Freedom is based on responsibility of the individual, and the restrictions placed on government limiting what power it has over the individual. If what I do doesn’t steal your property or harm you physically then there is no reason to prohibit what I do. The “people die because of X, so X must be outlawed” logic doesn’t work. Safety, from anything other than the government, is not guaranteed in the US Constitution. Speed doesn’t kill every time. If anything it rarely does on a percentage basis, compared to cutting down trees for example. Accidents happen, in all manner of ways. Part of life is accepting risk. What Jack has to say poses no direct harm to anyone. You can disagree with him, but you can not shut him up. Instead of trying, offer a counter-argument that makes some sense. Better yet, find a compromise that works for all involved. This is how a free society is supposed to work.

    –chuck

  • avatar
    Robstar

    Kurt>

    If this is NOT something he has actually done, it should not be on the TRUTH about cars. If I wanted to read fiction, I’d do it on another website.

  • avatar
    essen

    Kurt,

    How is it slander? If you are stupid enough to detail how you break the law, give your real name, post pictures of your car with your license plate, and I report it to the police, I am merely repeating what was said. I agree, no charges will become of it, until he kills someone, hopefully just himself.

  • avatar
    Joe O

    I find it humorous the outrage expressed at this article when I deal with the situations described everyday(ok, not escaping law enforcement).

    People cutting me off when I’m traveling 20-25mph faster than them? A few times a day. People wavering into my lane where I have to use the shoulder to avoid getting hit? Maybe 2 times a week.

    Planning ahead a quarter mile, identifying cars and their speeds, relative positions, and likelihood of next move? It’s a subconcious effort now.

    I regularly drive 85mph in a place where people are either driving 65 or their doing 85.

    Are you outraged at me? Am I a danger to your life?

    I check my tire pressures and fluids weekly and I drive a sporty car. I get outraged at the people in Dodge Durango’s driving like me when I can see their right front tire bulging from low pressure.

    I get outraged at the people who drive like me while talking on their cell phones, texting, reading maps, etc.

    I get outraged at people who drive their multi-ton vehicles while not paying attention.

    THAT is dangerous to me. That deserves outrage and scorn.

    Driving exceedingly fast in a vehicle that can handle it, while training yourself to be ultra-aware….

    Well, I’m not as outraged. I want you to slow down when we’re in a merging situation, and I’d prefer you not use the shoulder since a little grit can make you slide.

    But mainly, I want you to drive like Jack suggests: Attentive, with mutitple moves already planned out in your head.

  • avatar
    Robstar

    Joe O> 85 < (2 * 65). Big difference.

    I encourage anyone who really wants to learn how to drive safely to take an MSF course.

    You will learn alot more than any high school drivers ed course.

  • avatar
    Snikster

    These articles are the dumbest things I’ve ever read on here. Don’t get me wrong, I think 55mph – 100km/h speed limits are completely dumb. I own a BMW, and typically drive quicker than the posted limits…but C’MON…the stuff in these articles is beyond stupid. First when I got my car, I took it out on a 4-laner and spun it up to about 130mph. It was right about then I realized that one twitch from the line of minivans and Corollas I was passing and it was all over for everyone. The car was capable of it, doesn’t mean it was a good idea. This is the 2nd idiotic article I’ve seen written by this guy (and not particularly well written either). I’m seeing a trend.

  • avatar
    guyincognito

    As much as I am against political correctness and for free speech and controversial writing, this series scares me and is leaving me with mixed feelings about whether it should be published on this site.

    I’ll admit, I’m not at all conservative behind the wheel and will (hypothetically) execute the occasional right hand pass or 2 lane change between 2 cars that are traveling less than a car length apart or triple digit speeds. I do, however, take my car to the track when I really want to go balls out.

    Still, I have never seen anyone driving as you describe. This shit is absolutely crazy. The shoulder pass is the scariest to me. There is so much junk in the shoulders of the roads I drive on, I can’t see how you would avoid hitting it and being sent flying out of control. Also the running from the cops is nuts. I’ve had a couple of unpleasant brushes with traffic police and the resultant court visits in my younger years, so I can authoritatively say, it is not worth it.

  • avatar
    veefiddy

    RF – I have to ask, since you’re not sayin’ – what’s your POV on all this? You got kinda prissy with Clarkson for drinking a G+T in his HiLux on an iceberg (where he was endangering whom? baby polar bears I suppose). So what’s your take on Jack here? You are publishing him after all.

  • avatar
    sightline

    One caveat to the left-lane takedown:

    9 times out of ten, the meek toyota driver will move to the side of the road and that will be all. The tenth time, he will see the taillights of your M3, realize you’re not a cop, get REALLY upset, and come after you. Do this to a 20 year old over-testosterone-d “dude” and you could be in a dangerous high-speed road rage situation.

    As always, know the situation.

  • avatar
    Jordan Tenenbaum

    Oh yeah, I forgot to call shenanigans on the multicultural kids bit. Unless it is a car filled with children from different cultures, (not to be confused with skin color) those kids all share the same culture that they’ve been immersed in.

  • avatar
    RayH

    …or we will surely drive right into the back of a lane-wandering minivan full of multicultural children stroking crippled kittens and singing “Kumbaya.”

    They’re all orphans as well!

    Great series. Looking forward to the rest.

  • avatar
    Lumbergh21

    I really hope that this is an ill-conceived joke. And, for everybody’s sake, I hope everybody reading these “articles” realizes it and doesn’t practice the “techniques” described here-in. As far as what should happen when the police catch somebody driving like Jack is advocating, let’s just say Rodney King got off easy compared to what I would like to see happen. Every time I see video of one of these idiots in the inevitable wreck (not accident), I wish that the cops would take care of justice right then and there. That these articles are continuing is disturbing and makes me question the direction TTAC is taking.

    P.S. My experience with left lane hogs leads me to beleive the flashing lights trick rarely works. The people in the left lane are generally there because (like Jack Baruth, evidently) they think the road is theirs and they don’t give a f*** about anybody else on the road. Very rarely has flashing my lights woke the person from their stupor so that they pulled over to the right. Just as often, it has made them angry at me and made passing them several times more difficult, as they feel the need to block me in.

  • avatar
    Dawnrazor

    First, let’s cut RF a little slack. Remember that the “vision” of TTAC is to serve as an UNDILUTED source of information and discussion regarding vehicles and motoring in general, and these articles being posted would seem to be consistent with that objective. It’s assumed that the TTAC readership is responsible and mature enough to filter things read here through a little common sense and wisdom, and I appreciate the fact that articles/comments/commentaries on TTAC are not watered-down in order to “protect” readers who are not mature or smart enough to use information gained from this site responsibly. Based upon comments I’ve read, it appears that most of the readers here (assuming that the pool of folks who regularly submit comments represents an accurate cross-section of all TTAC readers) are exactly the sort of rational, intellegent folk who can do exactly this.

    My concern is what happens when the bored, overindulged, and unemployed 20 yo still living with his folks reads this. He (being unemployed and carefree due to living off his folks) spends his days playing GranTurismo and finally unlocks all the licenses, tracks, and cars-basically “mastering” the game. Intoxicated with new-found (and totally inappropriate) confidence in his driving skills, he finds TTAC, reads this article, and feels even more invincible. This emboldens him to take out daddy’s 760/SL55/M5/’Vette/etc. one night…
    The next morning, all of the local news outlets are running a story about the luxury car witnessed by motorists travelling at a high rate of speed and driving erratically just “moments” prior to spectacularly colliding with a minivan running the speed limit, wiping-out an entire family consisting of a mother, father, and three young children, and indirectly traumatizing surviving family members who may never fully cope with or recover from their loss. This exact scenario was faced by a close friend two years ago (his brother’s entire family was obliterated by one of these selfish dicks, who is (fortunately) now housed in a facility where having a tattoo of an attractive woman on one’s back makes a person quite popular…)

    Please people, if you really want to drive like this, take it to a track. If you don’t live close enough to one, tough shit-you’ll just have to accept the fact that high-speed driving is one hobby inaccessable to you on a practical basis (but then again, you could always move closer to one if it’s that important to you-it’s still a “free” country).

  • avatar
    tigeraid

    bla bla American Dream bla bla Freedom bla bla The Pigs Can’t Catch Me… Why are we still reading this crap on TTAC? It’s nothing more than macho dick-wagging masquerading as supposed informated information.

    There’s zero reason to drive this way on public roads. At all. It’s this kind of crap, and crap like the Cannonball that gives real racers like me a bad name.

    This is the same Jack Baruth that, over on his own site, has published several articles about track days, stockcar training schools, and other useful, constructive, educational high performance driving.

    And then we come over to TTAC, a site about the automotive INDUSTRY, and read this exact opposite crap?

    This man should be thrown in prison. 5-10 over is perfectly reasonable in relation to the road conditions… Speeding and racing like this is for immature morons and they deserve the punishment they get.

    Most of these so-called “techniques” are a crock of shit that most TRAINED racing drivers would scoff at. They’re completely subjective and based purely on the author’s so-called “experience” driving like a retard for most of his life.

    TTAC should be ashamed to publish this stuff.

  • avatar
    tigeraid

    informated/informative, sorry. TTAC really needs an “EDIT” feature. ;)

  • avatar
    ttacgreg

    tonycd . . . right on!

    In the last days of the 55 speed limit days after reading a book that described in detail the concept of “extending” your lead out ahead of a known officer, I applied it just once as an experiment in very innocuous circumstances at quite sane speeds (legal speeds by today’s standards). The result was the honorable officer catching up to me. Of course by the time he was within a mile of me I was back down to legal. He was the the angriest officer I ever encountered, and I got a written warning that was all he could legally muster, and his wording indicated there was no sustainable evidence he could document. If he had VASCAR I would have been toast. So much for the “extending out” idea. Now perhaps if I were some sort of millionare for whom lawyer fees were no big deal or possibly having certain political connections and who wanted to just be defiant, AND there were no other vehicles on the road, it might be a fun game as the writer described it . Deliberate cat and mouse with police officers? No way.
    I do have a friend who succeeded at this in the late 60’s. At night he got far enough out ahead of the outclassed cop car that he just pulled off the road and parked about 300 yards off the road with his lights off and watched the officer drive right on by, full speed, lights flashing.

  • avatar
    OB 50

    I don’t understand this at all. TTAC has, up until this point, seemed to possess a uniquely mature and insightful perspective on the auto enthusiast world.

    Is this an officially sanctioned troll? If so, I get the message loud and clear TTAC, “fuck me.”

    This is the kind of internet-tough-guy content that wouldn’t be allowed to fly on most boy-racer, fart-can, park-bench-wing-having message boards. Why is it here?

    Has Jack Baruth actually done all of these things? If so, then he’s an unequivocal douche – forum rules be damned. If not, then he doesn’t know what he’s talking about, and is no less guilty of douchebaggery in the first degree.

    What the hell?

  • avatar
    tedward

    A word of cautionary advice…if you take evasive action try to end up going in roughly the same direction as you were when the officer spotted you (no endless left turns). If you can’t manage that then have a really convincing destination in mind that your current heading supports. Much better off not running and taking the ticket, unles of course your are in a state with seizure laws, in which case you are an idiot if you comply (unintended consequences etc…).

    I got caught doing this as an idiot teenager and I was lucky to end up parallel to my initial direction, the cop told me frankly that he couldn’t make a ticket stick (he never saw me speeding either). The problem was we covered 9 miles in very few minutes, so the fact that I was seen going the speed limit at the end of it was shown up by his dash clock, which told a very different story. He gave me a serious warning and refrained from raping me with bs tickets (which I deserved and then some). In hindsight he made the right decision, because I’ve had a “never again” policy ever since (his “I have kids too” speach really stuck).

    Oddly enough, once he determined I wasn’t a douche and was pretty local, he overshared that I completely smoked him on that road. He specifically asked me not to tell him when I reverted back to the speed limit, I think because he’d already decided not to write the tickets and didn’t want my stupid young ass to go and blow it for him. If he had kicked the shit out of me I would have taken it as well deserved.

  • avatar

    I commented on Part I, so I’ll keep the concern for my family and every other socially responsible driver on the road, regardless of whether they are ‘innocent’ or not (I submit that my almost 4 month-old son is pretty innocent) to a minimum. Instead, I few issue with a few other points.

    First: People using the autobahn to justify this reckless speeding. “German statistics show that driving fast has nothing to do with accidents.” Considering the speeds driven on the autobahn are legal and everyone understands that, there is no comparison between that and a US or Canadian highway where most people feel they are getting away with something by driving 10-15 mph over the limit. Not the same. As soon as the US has a highway with no speed limit, you can dust off that ‘fact’ but until then, shelve it.

    Second: We all understand that any driving is dangerous, and you may be more likely to get in an accident because some idiot ran a stop light (also illegal, by the way) or drifted into the wrong lane because they were too busy texting (often illegal, always stupid) to pay attention. That doesn’t change the fact that by going that much faster than traffic, you are driving dangerously for the circumstances. Besides, shouldn’t we want to limit ALL unsafe driving? Not just arbitrarily pick and choose based on what some assholes think is fun.

    Finally, I’ll use this quote to exemplify a sentiment that seems pretty common in both threads: “There is nothing morally wrong with speeding nor is there anything inherently dangerous.” I disagree. When a person chooses to endanger others because they want to break up the monotony of their drive or because they are in a hurry , I would say there is something very morally wrong with that. If you can find a nice empty road where you can see for miles that there is not another soul around, I’ll buy the illegal not immoral argument. But that’s not what these ‘editorials’ are describing. Passing on the right at speed? TRYING not to use the shoulders? No, choosing to drive that way is illegal AND immoral.

    In short. Don’t be a selfish prick and risk other people’s lives so you can get your jollies. Take it to a track. I saw mention of an annual road race in Texas that sounds like a blast. There are probably more of those out there. Or go to Germany. Just stay the hell away from public roads.

  • avatar
    Dr. Remulac

    kewells :
    May 21st, 2009 at 9:22 am

    Can we get a post for tips on driving drunk?

    +1, the context this is written in is disgustingly reckless, even if it is some weird inside joke.

    How about sex while driving, mailbox baseball? We need instructions for that as well, don’t we?

  • avatar
    tedward

    essen…just making the suggestion is pretty despicable.

    As much as I wouldn’t want my (hypothetical) children riding in one of Jack’s nazi-sleds I wouldn’t want them following your example either.

  • avatar

    RF,

    Would you publish an editorial by a car thief titled The Truth About Stealing Cars?

    I know that I’d read it.

  • avatar

    Hello everyone,

    Thanks for the comments, positive and negative. I’m a little nervous at the idea, expressed by some, that this type of information shouldn’t be shared. One of the virtues of a free society is that we trust people to do the right thing with information, even if it’s information on how to do the wrong thing.

    I remember giving a presentation to my ENG112 class on this same topic back in 1990. (Yes, that means I’m 37 years old.) At the time, I was quite full of myself, having ducked cops many times in my 302-powered ’80 Marquis Brougham coupe. I thought I knew it all. In the years afterwards, I would learn that I did not know it all. In one particularly illuminating incident, I went for a shoulder pass in said Marquis while trailing off the brakes and was ejected into the median backwards at semi-high speed.

    Young men will always want to go fast, until this society manages to completely neuter their natural aggressive impulses into cheap sex and online gaming. (May that day never come.) They should have some information available to them.

    I said it yesterday, but for today’s commenters: yes, I do “take it to the track”. A recap of last week’s race can be found here, for those of you who wonder how well my approach translates to wheel-to-wheel racing:

    http://www.speedsportlife.com/2009/05/18/race-update-may-16-17-2009-we-win-one-and-lose-one-and-rent-a-battery-from-an-upside-down-porsche/

  • avatar
    wjo

    Posting this series shows extremely poor editorial judgment. We aren’t going to change Jack Baruth’s mindset — please Jack, do post where you are planning to travel though so I’ll plan to not drive on the same roads as you. (One might think these posts are trolling for comments, but Baruth’s earlier post about avoiding an accident at 123mph proves otherwise….).

    By approving these editorials — which don’t per se teach good driving techniques as much as endorse reckless driving — Mr. Farago is endorsing practices that both flagrantly violate the law and risk life and limb. I don’t think that this is what the site should stand for. Truth about Cars is not truth about reckless driving.

  • avatar
    OB 50

    I’m a little nervous at the idea, expressed by some, that this type of information shouldn’t be shared.

    Really? That’s what you’re nervous about?

    You know, there are some bomb-making schematics out there that might not be common knowledge yet. When do we get to learn about those? I’d hate to miss out on anything.

    Keep me informed, Jack.

  • avatar

    How to Drive Fast on Drugs
    While Getting Your
    Wing-Wang Squeezed
    and
    Not Spill Your Drink

    by P.J. O’Rourke

    When it comes to taking chances, some people like to play poker or shoot dice; other people prefer to parachute-jump, go rhino hunting, or climb ice floes, while still others engage in crime or marriage. But I like to get drunk and drive like a fool. Name me, if you can, a better feeling than the one you get when you’re half a bottle of Chivas in the bag with a gram of coke up your nose and a teenage lovely pulling off her tube top in the next seat over while you’re going a hundred miles an hour down a suburban side street. You’d have to watch the entire Mexican air force crash-land in a liquid petroleum gas storage facility to match this kind of thrill. If you ever have much more fun than that, you’ll die of pure sensory overload, I’m here to tell you.

    Read the whole thing, it’s one of PJ’s best.

  • avatar
    Autojunkie

    I know exactly what Mr. Jack Baruth means though. As a true car guy, I’ve mastered the art of driving drunk or high on weed (both completely different). Becasue I’m a car guy, I know better than the average drunk driver on how to handle my car when I’m wasted.

    I find it easy to weave between cars in heavy traffic at high speeds when I’m drunk. I should know… I’m a car guy!

    I’ve been doing this 20 years with no accidents what-so-ever so this is how I know my method is “the best” and will share it with everyone else.

    wtf…

    Sarcism… Get it?

    In all honesty? If I saw this asshole passing me on the shoulder I would push my shitty looking truck right into him on the shoulder.

    While a clear mind and total attention is a necessary part of driving at any speed, so is respect for other drivers.

    A$$HOLE!

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    I have a V1, laser jammer, laser veil etc on my Audi. I have them so I can avoid getting speeding tickets. I have fallen prey before to tickets that would not have prevented any accidents but were obviously a revenue gaining measure. Where I live, there are two types of tickets/citations you can get for going over the speed limit:

    1) Speeding ticket. The tickets, where I live, are given out to speeders but not people who are recklessly going to too fast. If you are 40km/h or under over the limit, this is the ticket for you. I doubt many accidents are caused by speeding this much on the highway (I NEVER speed in the city, thats plain stupid) and these are the tickets that motivated me to install counter-measures in my car.

    2) STUNTING. This IS dangerous. If you are 41km/h or over the limit, this is the ticket you will get. If the LEO does not hand you a suspension and confiscate your car. This is the type of driving that the article describes and is just plain stupid to attempt.

    Speeding is, in my mind, not dangerous. Going so fast you earn a stunting ticket, well, you deserve it.

  • avatar
    GeeDashOff

    Maybe these “techniques” work in Grand Theft Auto 4 or fantasy land or middle of bumfuck nowhere Ohio with Sgt. McFatAss, but its pretty obvious one Jack Baruth has never run from the cops.

    Cops aren’t morons, they don’t think you’re going to make only right turns, and abandoning your car and entering a restaurant is possibly the stupidest thing you could do when trying to avoid the Po Po.

    One radio call with a partial plate number or vehicle description and youre fucked. The cops don’t even need to chase you.

  • avatar
    Paul Niedermeyer

    The truth about the private pleasures of life is having the judgment to know whether or not (or how) to talk about them.

  • avatar
    mh

    This is just too far. Reckless, immature, ignorant of physics, selfish, and generally wrong-headed. I’ve been a consistent reader of this site for more than a year but I won’t be coming back again.

    I’d imagine this sort of controversy is a good way to generate traffic. But will sponsors realize how much they’re tarnishing their brand? I’ll think twice about buying a car from a company that advertises with this publication.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    yes i agree

    mr. farago please cancel my subscription

  • avatar
    JellyMunchkin

    Young men will always want to go fast, until this society manages to completely neuter their natural aggressive impulses into cheap sex and online gaming. (May that day never come.) They should have some information available to them.

    Funny… I’m a young man and I have zero desire to go as fast as you describe in the setting you describe. Nor do I think that cheap sex and “online gaming” represent the only other outlets for my own aggressive behavior. And girls like me. Perhaps all these things are related.

    Oh, and I also like cars. Are an interest in cars and a concern for socially responsible behavior mutually exclusive? Am I officially kicked out of the No-Girls-Allowed fort now?

  • avatar
    josho

    I rarely comment, but feel like I need to add something to offset the horror and outrage expressed by 75% of the people posting.

    Jack, great articles! They are fun to read and I’m enjoying them. Almost as much as reading the comments.

    I’m not going to write anything about the First Amendment, how speeding is actually safe, or any of that. But, I would like to point out that if someone’s going to speed recklessly, they’ve probably already done it, or they’re going to do it anyway.

    And if they’re going to be influenced by something, it’s going to be a Need for Speed movie, a Grand Theft Auto video game, or more likely, their parents’ lack of involvement in their lives. I’m confident that it’s not going to be an article on a moderately obscure auto enthusiast site with a relatively mature audience.

    I’ll admit that I was a teenager once, and did my share of foolish, stupid things. I didn’t need an article on the Internet to get me to do them (or, for that matter, a movie or a video game). Now, I’m older and wiser, and have different priorities (thankfully). The presence of these articles isn’t going to change my behavior anymore than their absence did before.

    In short, this series of articles isn’t going to change anything, other than give enjoyment to some and provoke outrage in others.

    Cheers!

  • avatar
    John R

    Kick Ass! This is better than Voltaire!!

  • avatar
    JellyMunchkin

    @Paul Niedermeyer

    The truth about the private pleasures of life is having the judgment to know whether or not (or how) to talk about them.

    Being a young man with aggressive tendencies, I know a thing or two about engaging in “private pleasures.” But driving at insane speeds in a reckless manner on public highways shared by other drivers is a pleasure that is by no means private.

  • avatar

    Great writing as usual.

    I’m a little surprised at the “Internet is Serious Business” outcry. I don’t think anyone who hasn’t sped like this before is going to print off the article and go try it for the first time, instructions in hand.

    Ease up.

  • avatar
    Adamatari

    Having once gone through Pennsylvania at night at 90 mph, I think one other VERY important thing must be mentioned – at night, there are a lot of things you can’t see well. To quote Star Trek, “Can’t see shit, captain”. On a flat empty 6 lane highway with lots of lights this is unlikely to be a serious issue, but on a 4 lane divided highway through the mountains with little light you’re talking about 2 lane choices and much less time to make a move.

    I had to take a break after I went over a piece of tire that I didn’t notice till too late. I couldn’t see it and at that point I was passing someone. Luckily it passed under the car without hitting anything, but it sure shook me.

    One thing I did learn on that run, though, is that some truckers really haul ass all night, and while at it they drive like the Europeans – pass on the left, drive on the right. Incidentally I was on that particular highway to avoid busy ones that ran through developed areas, which inevitably were much scarier as there were tons of people all doing random things at over 70 mph. I’d much rather have the truckers at 80 or so.

    As for the idea of playing chase with officers, while it’s a very dumb idea one of my favorite youtube clips is of a Opel Lotus Omega just walking away from some cop in Sweden or something. That car was GONE.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    As a dumb teenager I used to drive a bit like Jack, though only during daylight hours and I was never dumb enough to try to pass on the shoulder. I once hit 130mph in a Jag XJ-S. I was fortunate enough to never get caught at those speeds, but a few years later the PA police stepped up enforcement, and I racked up 12 points and lost my license for a month.

    That was it for my landspeeder career. It just isn’t worth it. The adrenaline rush that you get from triple digit speeds on public roads only lasts maybe 30 seconds. After that, it’s only a combination of road rage from slow cars blocking both lanes, and stress from keeping a constant vigilance for cops. That, and outright panic when they tag you. And they will. It’s not fun.

    If you want to have fun, take your car to a track, and put your skill to good use. Hitting the apex just right and nailing the exit is a hell of a lot more fun than driving dangerously fast on a public road will ever be.

    Once I got my license back, I kept to a strategy of under 70 in 55 zones, and under 75 in 65 zones, and I haven’t been ticketed since. If there’s a pack of fast moving cars I’ll stick with them, or if I can find a car to chase – provided its doing less than 85 – then I’ll chase for awhile, but that’s it. I’d much rather sit back, relax, and enjoy my A6’s comfy seats and great stereo.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    Speeding like this at night? Somewhere, Darwin is rubbing his hands together Mr. Burns style.

    Jack, have you ever been hit by a drunk driver? Someone texting? Have you hit someone while driving excessively fast (meaning going at least 30 mph faster than most other traffic)?

    I think most people wouldn’t use these tactics, but I fear the few that would simply would panic and not remember what to do or otherwise lose control of their cars/trucks and kill someone. These are skills that I would assume take time to hone, yes?

    In general, people drive like crap. I’m not convinced broadcasting this information makes anyone safer.

  • avatar

    Holy shit – this article is fucking insane.

  • avatar
    tigeraid

    Thanks for the comments, positive and negative. I’m a little nervous at the idea, expressed by some, that this type of information shouldn’t be shared. One of the virtues of a free society is that we trust people to do the right thing with information, even if it’s information on how to do the wrong thing.

    I would never, ever advocate sensoring anything. Freedom of expression is a right. That doesn’t mean what you said is right. I put this dreck in the same category as “how to commit rape” and “KKK hanging practices.”

  • avatar
    A is A

    If the police manage to catch us, we say we didn’t see them and that we always drive like a maniac. This abject confession of putative stupidity…

    Putative?. Are you sure?.

    I have my reservations.

    I kindly suggest you to do NOT use seat belts. Come on!. Allow Darwinism make its magic!.

    This is just too far. Reckless, immature, ignorant of physics, selfish…

    No, sir. Jack is not “selfish”. We, selfish people, value our lives.

  • avatar
    gzuckier

    All this reflection on the bad end that ultraspeeding will inevitably result in would be more hard hitting, if it weren’t for the crashes I pass every day that happen at the normal travel speed, because some idiot who wouldn’t dream of traveling above 100 mph feels that at 75 he is quite safe in talking on his phone with one hand while changing lanes without signaling while tailgating because the semi he’s cutting off is also traveling at a nice safe 75.

  • avatar
    A is A

    …because some idiot who wouldn’t dream of traveling above 100 mph feels that at 75 he is quite safe in talking on his phone with one hand…

    Insert “other” between “some” and “idiot” and I can agree entirely with you.

    I ignore my cellular phone while I drive. And I know that lane changing is a hazardous business and I act accordingly.

    If one is really conscious of the risks involved, entirely legal driving is a thrilling experience.

  • avatar
    jaybread

    I think Jack warned everyone at the start of this that you should change channels if you are offended by his POV.

    You can’t put the Genie back in the bottle–

    Publishing this won’t make someone go out and kill your family. That guy isn’t reading this web site.

    He’s on-line figurng out how build bombs, grow anthrax, or build a better bong.

    You are much more at risk from a guy that just lost his job, then stopped at a bar on the way home.

    I might make myself a pariah here, but I like the articles. Alas, since my F350 diesel dually has a governed top speed of 98mph, and is bigger than a barn, I won’t get the chance to try any of this rebel with a cause stuff.

    But, it’s fun to read.

  • avatar
    George B

    Jack, a friend of mine lives in Columbus, OH. Too many cars plus deer to drive that fast. May I recommend I-10 in West Texas instead. 80 mph speed limit and few cars.
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/06/05/national/main1681455.shtml

    The Indian Nation Turnpike is another possible place to speed by yourself. 75 mph speed limit with a toll discouraging local traffic and not much reason for thru traffic south of US-69. I’ve seen grass growing between the concrete sections of the Indian Nation Turnpike.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Nation_Turnpike

  • avatar
    agenthex

    Oh my. What gargantuan righteous indignation you have.

    I guess the lesson to be learned is never be open and honest about socially unattractive hobbies.

    The whining about being passed on the right is ironic though. It happened because there was plenty of space there, so stop being part of the problem.

  • avatar

    He’s on-line figurng out how build bombs, grow anthrax, or build a better bong.

    Already been done.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    I guess the lesson to be learned is never be open and honest about socially unattractive hobbies.

    Yes, that is the lesson. Stunning powers of observation you have.

  • avatar
    Sean H.

    Jack Baruth has become my new hero.

    I’m 19, so of course I speed. Evaded cops? Damn right I have. Driven in the triple-digits? I do almost every day (Thanks to my Cobalt SS). Went in and out of lanes? Of course. I don’t need a slowpoke minivan to be a buzzkill for me.

    I’m not being sarcastic in the very least. Honestly, I don’t think there’s anything more fun than flying by a cop and having him try to keep up. And the best part is, I get away with a lot of it.

    My recommendation: want to speed? Have a buddy come with you. Have him drive up to the nearest intersection and scope out for the fuzz. See a cop? Tell him to call you on your cellphone. You guys can take turns speeding. Afraid to wreck? Get out of my lane.

    Kudos, Jack. I can’t wait for part 3.

  • avatar
    DarkSpork

    I’m looking forward to part 3. I never knew that police will usually assume a driver will turn right. A lot of the other information I was already familiar with.

  • avatar
    agenthex

    Yes, that is the lesson. Stunning powers of observation you have.

    So for you hollow indignation must be the natural stage after such observation.

  • avatar
    Neb

    We look ahead, not behind, or we will surely drive right into the back of a lane-wandering minivan full of multicultural children stroking crippled kittens and singing “Kumbaya.”

    I know how you feel, last time I committed vehicular homicide I crashed into a grandma and her two grandkids in a old Chevy Citation. Had to do paperwork for hours, it was such a drag

  • avatar
    like.a.kite

    please don’t ever capitalize ecstasy and tell this to everyone you see doing it

    appreciate the series

  • avatar
    Power6

    Cop cars have “takedown” lights

    Rev up yer Google Jack, those aren’t “takedown lights” those are called “wig-wags.”

    “Takedown” lights are the non-flashing white lights in the lightbar that light you up almost as good as the old spotlight-in-the-drivers-mirror-don’t-look-at-me trick.

    I am amazed at your seeming lack of respect for the the lives of others. But then again only a man with an attitude like that could write a series like this, so good on ya, I’m all for the learnins.

  • avatar
    HEATHROI

    Its almost…..GONZO

    Raoul Duke: Few people understand the psychology of dealing with a highway traffic cop. A normal speeder will panic and immediately pull over to the side. This is wrong. It arouses contempt in the cop heart. Make the bastard chase you. He will follow.
    But he won’t know what to make of your blinker signal that says you are about to turn right. This is to let him know you’re pulling off for a proper place to talk. It will take him a moment to realize that he’s about to make a 180 degree turn at speed, but you will be ready for it. Brace for the g’s, and fast heel-toe work.

  • avatar
    Ronman

    The sequel was funner to read than the original. but you should put the subtitle. people don’t try this at home, stunts depicted in the above article are performed by crazy drivers with no regards to their personal wellbeing and that of others. these same people do not care about their freedom either…

    by the way, if a cop clocks you doing 180mph on a public road in the U.S, and you eventually do stop will you only get a ticket? because in europe, i heard you loose your license, car, feedom, and possibly your will to ever do it again even if it was in the confines of the prison you’re overpopulating…

  • avatar
    DrivnEZ

    Hilarious. Your humor and writing style brought a smile to my face.

  • avatar
    theflyersfan

    kewells wrote:
    May 21st, 2009 at 9:22 am

    Can we get a post for tips on driving drunk?

    I’m from (southern) Ohio also. Is there going to be a post on how to keep your trunk-based meth lab from going up in flames?

    Come on down to Cincinnati’s I-275 to set a land speed record at night. The entire western portion (from Colerain/US-27 to the CVG airport) at night is flat out empty except for the Indiana casino traffic. Just watch out for the Indiana patrol car that lives behind some signs at the state line.

    The eastern side from I-71 to I-471 tends to be empty but the cops are everywhere. Play at your own risk.

    It’s an article on a website devoted to cars and those who love to get the most out of cars. I’d like to think that we all can make these decisions for ourselves. I believe that most if not all TTAC readers and posters are far above the Springer mouth-breathers that would use these articles as their “speeding Bible.”

  • avatar
    I_Like_Pie

    Some of you folks have bucketloads of sand in your vagina!

  • avatar
    Kevin L. Copple

    Regardless, this series encourages me to monitor posts at this site regularly. I don’t want to miss what’s coming next!

  • avatar
    fallout11

    If we wanted complete safety, we’d never leave our homes. The roads are already dangerous (thanks largely to inattentive and distracted slowpokes and drunks, not hyper-attentive speeders), and we accept such dangers on a daily basis as a matter of course. Its called “life”.

    Thanks for posting this series. Highly enjoyable.


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