By on October 30, 2009

Don't Panic!

With apologies to Douglas Adams:

Stress and nervous tension are now serious social problems in all parts of the Galaxy, and it is in order that this situation should not in any way be exacerbated that the following facts will now be revealed in advance.

I took my privately-owned 2009 Audi S5 to the CTS-V Challenge, intending to compete in it. This happened because every manufacturer in the industry was afraid to face the CTS-V with their own car, no matter how much we begged and pleaded.

After five practice laps, the S5’s brake pedal was sitting on the floorboards, making it impossible for me to continue in the event. To prevent me from having to sit on the sidelines watching everybody else having fun, Cadillac let me borrow the same automatic CTS-V that Bob Lutz drove. It was not a ringer, and I explain why below.

Michael Cooper is a talented driver, and I took him too lightly. Had I known how fast he was going to run, I’d have taken a few more risks on-track and turned the necessary time.

Now for our story.

The CTS-V Challenge arrived at a most inconvenient time for me, smack dab in the middle of a week in which I would learn three new tracks, drive more than three thousand miles, and fly across the country. My itinerary for the week:

Friday, Oct 23, 10PM: Drive to New Jersey Motorsports Park from Columbus, Ohio overnight to save on hotel expenses

Saturday and Sunday: Instructing for Audi Club NA on the “Lightning” course

Monday: Drive home to Ohio and trade my Boxster for my S5. Why not drive the S5 at Lightning? Simple. I only have one set of tires for the car and they need to last the rest of the year.

Tuesday: Drive to Monticello, NY

Wednesday: Drive to Rhode Island to play pinball with our august founder, Robert Farago

Thursday: CTS-V Challenge then drive home to Ohio

Friday, Oct 30: Write story for TTAC then fly to Laguna Seca

Saturday: MX-5 Cup race at Laguna Seca

Let’s get one thing straight: Robert, Eddy, and I worked very hard to try to find a car in which I could represent TTAC. We pitched everybody from Jaguar (“Show them that your car is faster”) to Honda (“We’ll run an Accord to show who’s winning the sales race in this country”) but the universal response was a cautious refusal. Robert was of the opinion that I shouldn’t participate without a chance of winning or making a serious point, and he may have been right. But I’m a racer and I will race a moped if I can get my hands on one. There was no way I was going to miss this event, period, point blank.

I arrived Thursday morning hopeful that the torrential rains of the two previous days would continue, allowing my S5 a bit of the ol’ Quattro advantage. Unhappily, it quickly became apparent that, although the track would have some standing water all day, there would be no rain in the forecast. I took my S5 out in morning practice to learn the track, hoping for the best.

Five laps later I was in the pits watching the backing plates of my brake pads smoking against the front discs. I’d narrowly missed a 125-mph slide off the end of the curving back straight, pumping a dead middle pedal and trying to catch some ABS activation on the wet track. There was no way to continue. I was done, finished, kaput.

Consider, for a moment, the relationship between TTAC and GM. From “General Motors Must Die” to the present day, there’s been no love lost. Yet the people at Cadillac offered to help me. They offered to assist with bleeding the brakes in my S5, which would not fix the issue. Then they offered to let me borrow a car. I took one of the Monticello “fleet car” CTS-Vs out and got five more practice laps before the session concluded.

During practice, I watched the other challengers. Only one of them — a 20-year-old kid who somehow had a new M3 and a flotilla of hangers-on — was matching my pace in the S5. I knew that the CTS-V was much faster than the S5, and that therefore I could take three safe laps out there in an unfamiliar car, on an unfamiliar eighteen-turn track, and get the time I needed to beat Bob and “win” this thing.

After a ninety-minute grind of television interviews, publicity shots, and other exercises seemingly designed to make sure everybody involved was nervous enough to puke, we were sent out to drive. The “run order” was the first hint of a setup. I would be driving first, on a wet track, along with two other challengers. Lutz would drive sixty minutes later, and Heinricy would drive thirty minutes after him. They would have a much drier track with plenty of rubber laid down.

I ended up being given the same CTS-V that Maximum Bob was scheduled to drive. It was loaded with Video V-Box gear — just what you’d need to coach someone to their maximum performance potential in a short period of time. But as I pulled out onto the main straight, I couldn’t help but notice that this particular V was a bit of a pig. My practice car was 2-3mph faster at the end of the back straight than the Lutzmobile. What the hell? I was expecting a ringer and got a rude surprise.

My three laps were basically 9/10ths excursions, working to extract as much time as I could without risking the car. While I was not driving in spectacular fashion, I knew that I was running consistently fast enough to beat all the non-pros out there, and I also knew that I would be handing Bob effectively a fresh car. There would be no accusations that we’d poisoned the well. With just ten laps of the track under my belt, I knew I’d never touch Heinricy, so I didn’t bother to try. I just sat back and enjoyed myself.

The enjoyment stopped when I got out of the car and looked at the timing board. Michael Cooper, the kid in the M3, had been sandbagging. His grey sedan, hunkered down with no visible gap between tire and fender, had circled the track seven-tenths of a second ahead of my best time. Fuck. I hate to lose. Should have pushed the car. Fuck.

I channeled my frustration into coaching Lawrence Ullrich from the New York Times before his run, trying to show him on the 3-D trackmap in the lobby how I would have run a 2:49. But Lawrence had an off-track incident in his first lap and never managed to put a great run together. At the end of the day, Heinricy and Link used a manual-transmission CTS-V to run three to five seconds faster than my time, on a mostly dry track. I can live with that, I suppose.

I have some regrets. I wish we’d been able to find a car. I wish I hadn’t arrogantly dismissed the other competitors out of hand and treated it like a six-figure milk run set up for my amusement. But I am grateful to Cadillac for helping me out, in the spirit of racing, when I needed a hand. I’m grateful to Monticello for letting a poverty-stricken club racer enjoy their zillion-dollar facility. And I left the event with plenty of respect for the CTS-V. Don’t get me wrong: I’d still rather have an MKS Ecoboost as a daily driver. But if you don’t think the CTS is capable of running against the fastest sedans in the world on an equal footing, you’re crazy. Whether that means anything in this economy, in this environment, in this era… that’s up to someone else to decide. I came, I saw, I conquered nearly everybody. Good enough for me.

At the end of the day...

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52 Comments on “How I Won/Lost/Failed to Understand the Cadillac CTS-V Challenge...”


  • avatar
    Yuppie

    It’s sad to hear that the brakes on the S4 is not up to snuff. Time to upgrade to a RS4?

  • avatar

    Classy mea culpa, Jack. Especially loved the bit about being ready to puke.

    A number of us on Twitter yesterday were saying, “Give Jack another shot, with the manual V!” But to no avail.

    So who is Michael Cooper, and how good is he?

    And what do you think of the track?

  • avatar
    grog

    Fascinating story. Lots of hubris in lots of places it seems.

    The whole thing has struck me as a bit too “insider baseball-ish”. The only thing it seemed to have done was allow Lutz the Putz to get on NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’ yesterday and crow about how the Caddies beat everybody. So, I guess from his perspective, the whole stunt was just that, a stunt with some PR potential to it. I’m sure he was glad everybody else could help.

    Nice to hear the GM folks handled your problems with a lot of class. I bet at the end of the day, both “sides” really want the same thing. Okay, maybe that’s the crack pipe talking.

  • avatar
    86er

    Humility, yet passion and the emotion spills off the page, to use a tired cliche.

    Ed, if you find a writer half as good to replace Baruth, I’ll write you into my will.

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    So Michael Cooper, a 20 year old “kid”, ran a good time.

    Didn’t we just see an article about young kids choosing iPhones and Xboxes over cars?

    I guess all really isn’t lost. I’m glad – I can’t imagine my kids not wanting to drive. I’m actually looking forward to teaching my kids how to drive, and if I’m lucky – teaching them how to run a lap on a track.

    -ted

  • avatar

    Over on Twitter @Cadillac posted a link to a Forbes article where Lutz says it was all about getting cheap exposure for the V: http://www.forbes.com/2009/10/29/gm-cadillac-cts-business-autos-lutz.html

    I guess there’s no desire, and so no need, to hide anything with the smoke and mirrors these days. Especially when the ploy is so fun to watch.

  • avatar
    hoax

    I’m by no means a GM fan but you have to give them credit for putting their balls on the line for anyone to come up and step on.

    Great PR stunt. I hope they do it again next year.

  • avatar
    RetardedSparks

    You gave it a good shot. Thanks for providing us with tons of mid-week entertainment!

    The S5′s brake issues just go to show that even higher-spec production cars are not close to track-worthy out of the box. Not sure what pads are standard on the CTS-V, but Cooper said the brakes his M3 only lasted a few laps (5 practice + 2 hot) longer than yours.

  • avatar

    86er: Believe me, I’m always looking. In the meantime, I’m just glad to have Jack as a member of the TTAC team.

    Bravo, Jack!

  • avatar
    frank rizzo

    Classy, honest article. Really enjoyed reading it.

    It was obviously a PR event, but who cares? I can’t wait to see video of the participants, including Lutz, having a great time driving.

  • avatar
    Verbal

    Get a shave and a haircut.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    I was glued to the PC yesterday following this. I also wanted to read your write-up on it. As usual, I enjoyed it.

    How did Maximum Bob drive?

    Because I find his time at 77 impressive.

  • avatar
    SkiD666

    Jack, I hope you had a least a little fun.

    Comments from Michael Cooper from another site:

    “So here is my take on it guys:

    I was hoping for rain all week because I figured Lutz would have some confidence issues in the rain. We got to the track and it was misting so got me going a little. I never expected to be able to beat Lutz in the ctsv, knowing the the ctsv was capable of. I haven’t been on the track since july, but that didn’t seem to effect me. In the first practice I didn’t take that many laps, Maybe 5-6 hot laps. I was able to do this because I watched a lot of video before going to the track. I then just watched what braking points people like John Heinricy were using going into turn 1 because thats the only spot I seemed to have trouble. Then the challenge came around, On my out lap I just checked out where the wet spots were and then came the laps. My first hot lap was pretty good, but as I went through I knew a few spots that I could pickup time on the 2nd lap. I did just that picking up what I think was a full second on the 2nd hot lap, I would have liked to get a 3rd lap in but the brakes had checked out.

    My impressions of the CTSV:

    I got to drive the CTSV with two other people in the car, an added 300 lbs. I pulled out of the pits and was impressed by the power. Then coming out of turn 1 in 2nd gear I was really impressed by the power since in my car I had to use third and the M lacks in torque and overall grunt to be honest. I come up to a few turns after that and then go down the back straight and was VERY impressed by the brakes, they inspired a lot of confidence and as a driver thats what you want. Every second of the two laps I got in the car impressed me the brakes and the power mostly, the handling was right their with that of the M3. I would love to get some timed laps in the CTSV at Monticello Motor Club.

  • avatar
    bunkie

    Regardless of what one might think of Lutz and GM, it’s clear that the CTS-V is one &$*#&^#$ing awesome car. Long live the pushrod V8!

    Jack, I’m glad you had a good time.

  • avatar
    NN

    This was a fantastic bit of PR for GM. Lutz earned respect for both himself (despite defeat, and at 77, jesus christ) and the CTS-V. Somebody should have brought the Stig over for measure.

  • avatar
    Lumbergh21

    Somebody should have brought the Stig over for measure.

    At least we know he’s familiar with driving in the rain.

  • avatar
    ChristyGarwood

    Jack, thanks so much for racing yesterday amidst your gruelling schedule! In addition to great racing skills, you are a gifted storyteller as well!

    Several of my co-workers and I were following the race on facebook, twitter and yammer. So much fun…

  • avatar
    DearS

    Great write up. I think I have a much better understading of Mr. Baruth. (is that your picture?). Pretty humble, smart, down to earth, competative, and self councious. A little bit of obsession ie. low self-esteem in the mix.

    Thanks for the write up and I wish you more fun times. Your a great addition to my internet reading. Now give yourself a pat on the back, just for being you.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    you can see cool pics here

    http://www.carguydad.com/pictures-from-cts-v-challenge/

  • avatar
    ohsnapback

    Great write-up and good job driving, J. Baruth.

    However, why would anyone want the Lincoln MKS EcoBoost (or not) over the CTS or CTS-V as a daily driver?

  • avatar
    John Horner

    Well done all around! Lutz was very smart to set this thing up as a way of getting some enthusiast attention for the CTS-V. Would ANYONE be talking about the CTS-V right now without this brilliant PR stunt.

    I’m no Lutz fanboy, but he hit is out of the park on this one.

  • avatar
    wsn

    John Horner :
    October 30th, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    Well done all around! Lutz was very smart to set this thing up as a way of getting some enthusiast attention for the CTS-V. Would ANYONE be talking about the CTS-V right now without this brilliant PR stunt.

    I would judge the success of the said PR by counting the number of additional sales of CTS-V or other GM products.

    Will it pay off the expense incurred?

  • avatar
    Andy D

    Mebbe apples and oranges, but I was a passenger in a rented CTS V6 with AWD. The driver liked the car better than his 530i daily driver. I’m glad GM can make a good touring sedan. Make a few more and who knows?

  • avatar
    wnoh41

    wsn:

    How would you plan to measure that?

  • avatar

    Forgive me, but I think some of what Baruth is saying is excuses. Now, I know TTAC’s esteemed founder Robert Farago needs someone to play pinball with him, but if Baruth had only contacted me, I could have probably done the job for him, and given him a bit of rest in preparation for the race. AFter all, I live only an hour away.

    Nonetheless, why did Max Bob get to wait an hour and Henricy an hour and a half after Baruth’s run, presumably giving the track ample time to dry out a bit?

    Nonetheless, we all know the whole thing was a bit of a stunt, but it was an excellent stunt, and any 77 year old who does as well as he Max Bob did racing against people half his age and even only slightly more than a quarter his age (Cooper) deserves credit. The neurons, after all, fire more slowly as one ages.

    But everyone deserves credit for pulling such good times, and for entertaining the rest of us so well. And I’m inclined, from Cooper’s account, posted by SkiD666, that the Cadillac deserves credit, although I can’t help thinking that it can’t possibly be as refined as the Beemer. But maybe I’m wrong on that.

    If only everyone at GM had what Max Bob has.

  • avatar

    @Verbal

    Baruth can wear his hair any way he damn pleases. Not that he needs anyone to defend him on this.

  • avatar
    Jeff Waingrow

    Verbal, can you supply readership with pics of yourself, front and back? We’d like to do a critique, for your benefit, of course.

  • avatar
    e85_STi

    kudos to Cadillac for class.

    Jack, whine whine whine.

    Made for Motor Trend.

    Top Gear’s UK presenters would have could have should have made this an interesting rain event.

    Kudos to the M3 driver with some hairy onions … Where is the league of gentleman when needed.

  • avatar
    Spencer Williams

    “Michael Cooper is a talented driver, and I took him too lightly. Had I known how fast he was going to run, I’d have taken a few more risks on-track and turned the necessary time.”

    So, you’re saying you would have beaten him, if you tried harder? You just chose not to? You’re saying you’re a better driver than him and could have bested his time, but figured nah, I’ll play it safe? Really?

    You lost. Man up and accept it, you’re still a great driver, a hundred times better than I am. Michael Cooper won, don’t detract from that with this coulda-woulda-shoulda crap. This “I wasn’t really trying” garbage is for middle school.

  • avatar

    Two thoughts. Why are all the guys who did not get cars complaining manufacturers “were too scared” when in fact the more logical scenario is that they did not want to be a part of a competitors publicity stunt?

    Second….a race suit??

    PS in one of the YT videos you see the caddy’s brakes glowing… I may be wrong but I doubt an OEM street pad will make that happen

  • avatar
    CellMan

    Kudos to you Jack for your honesty and vivid insight into your day.

    But I want to also say, kudos to GM, Cadillac and Mr. Lutz. For a 77-year old to throw down the gauntlet and race with young whippersnappers more than half his age and staying on the leaderboard, my hat off to you Maximum. Your business acumen and ability to guide the ship GM may suck, but as an enthusiast and gracious host to such an event, I am seriously impressed.

    ANd to Cadillac for offering Jack assistance, for including him in videos and allowing a member of the enemy TTAC to tussle mano-a-mano, is commendable indeed.

    This level of engagement with blogs and enthusiasts (incl. TTAC) honestly is that good news story I so long to hear from GM.

    And Jack, I can almost forgive you for your speeding guide series with this article. Almost.

    Well done all. I hope there is more of this.

  • avatar
    Jack Baruth

    @Spencer: Not sure where you are going with this. Everybody who has ever driven a car on a racetrack — a wet racetrack, particularly — knows there is a risk/reward ratio involved in turning fast laps.

    Without Michael’s outstanding drive, I had a two-second gap to the next competitor at my chosen pace. Why push any harder, knowing that a 140-mph excursion into a barrier in someone else’s car, more than six hundred miles from my home and six-month-old son, is increasingly likely the harder I push?

    This wasn’t Top Gear jerking around on an empty airfield: this is a real racetrack with a real chance to do some damage.

    The purpose wasn’t to make excuses. Excuses don’t win or lose competitions. The purpose was to open a door for TTAC’s readers into the event. I’ve read an unbelievable amount of stupidity on the Internet regarding what happened yesterday :)

  • avatar
    ajla

    After reading this, I have a sudden desire to watch the original Rocky film.
    ____

    So which car at the track sounded the best? The S5, M3, or XFR?

  • avatar
    Austin Greene

    Thanks for this Cactus Jack.

  • avatar
    Spencer Williams

    @Jack: I apologize for coming off overly harsh, that wasn’t my intention, and reading it over again, yeah, my bad. I don’t claim to be a racecar driver and my ignorance of things associated with racing probably shines through in my writing. And I do like how you point out that Bob’s car was kind of slow, making GM look better, IMO, for not having a ringer out there. The whole piece does provide a good emotional feel for the race and I enjoyed it very much.

    And I suppose the idea is just to win, not go as fast as you possibly can, so risk/reward is calculated at each and every turn, but seriously; weren’t you trying pretty darn hard to turn out the fastest laps you possibly could? I mean if you bested the field by ten seconds or some ridiculous amount, the publicity would be insane. And I can understand not wanting to crash someone else’s car, if that someone is your cousin Ed or your wife, but this car belonged to GM. I can understand your being grateful toward them for allowing you to use the car at all, but overall a company-owned car seems like the best candidate to flog to its limits. At least, it’s fair to say you would drive it harder than you would your own car you would be depending on to still be in one piece so you could drive it home, no?

    If my follow up questions contain as much ignorance as my first post, please take it as that, ignorance, and not trollish haterade. I’m a nerd in a Mustang, so I am fully accustomed to being hated on and don’t mean to spread it. ;)

    And I admit to being a Lutz fan. I can’t help it, the old guy cracks me up.

  • avatar
    brandloyalty

    I’d be curious to know how many /10th’s Baruth was driving his own car at. And if the people handling the event had any guidance to offer about how close the contestants should come to their skill or nerve level, and the implications of crashing one of their cars.

    More interesting would be to know how hard Cooper thought he was pushing his own car/luck. I can’t see why he’d be any more willing to risk crashing his own car that someone driving a borrowed car.

  • avatar
    shaker

    There’s something honest about this account; even competitors become “comrades in arms” when they’re competing against the same enemies (the track, the conditions, the clock), rather than banging fenders and wagging their cocks (NASCAR).

    I had an opportunity to run some laps (in a track-only Miata at a company-sponsored event), and I respect the mental and physical effort it takes to turn fast laps.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    My semi-educated guess is that Michael Cooper is either a member at Monticello or has had track time there, which counts for something.

    Jack, have a good time this weekend at Laguna.

  • avatar
    kurtamaxxguy

    Jack, many thanks for the insightful article about your participation in the CTS-V Challenge.

  • avatar
    adonasetb

    The CTS-V won Jack Baruth’s respect and Jack Baruth with this article and his driving won my respect.

  • avatar
    no_slushbox

    If you did not compete to the CTS-V challenge in a four door sedan was not a CTS-V then you did not compete in the CTS-V challenge.

    If you drove faster than Bob Lutz in a non-CTS-V four door sedan you won the challenge.

    The following people competed in the CTS-V challenge:

    Michael Cooper (Who is this guy?)- BMW M3: Top Lap: 2:50:424

    Bob Lutz- Cadillac CTS-V (VP of Marketing, GM): Top Lap: 2:56:321 (the only person in a CTS-V that was actually part of the CTS-V Challenge)

    Michael Mainwald (carguydad.com)- BMW M5: Top Lap: 3:05:398

    Wes Siler- Mitsubishi Evo X (Jalopnik): Top Lap: 3:08:126

    Archan Basu- Jaguar XF: Top Lap: 3:15:670

    Tom Loder- Audi RS4: Top Lap: 3:15:702

    All of these people deserve a lot of respect for simply bringing a four door sedan capable of competing against the CTS-V; it was obviously something difficult that not everyone could do.

    The following person won the CTS-V challenge:

    Michael Cooper (Who is this guy?)- BMW M3: Top Lap: 2:50:424

    This means that GM and the CTS-V lost.

    The following people did not compete in the CTS-V challenge, but where given free track days a CTS-V by GM in exchange for covering it the CTS-V Challenge:

    Jack Baruth- Cadillac CTS-V (TTAC): Top Lap: 2:51:153

    Lawrence Ulrich- CTS-V (New York Times): Top Lap: 2:53:157

    It’s that simple. Jack, you should have brought one of the famous Phaetons (a four door), and not burned the brakes, then at least you would have been a competitor. “I hate to lose. Should have pushed the car.” You lost when you didn’t show up in a four door sedan, not when a kid in a slower car that he or his dad own beat you in a no-liability-to-you press car.

    You assume this kid was going 100% in a car he’s responsible for? If you were really only driving at 90% in your free zero-liability CTS-V press car then Michael Cooper was probably driving at 70%.

  • avatar
    jacksonbart

    You should have rented a Mustang to drive, insurence be damned. Nice language. Hey at least it was free.

  • avatar
    Jack Baruth

    Sorry for the late responses on this, I’ve been at Laguna Seca all day. I’m .524 seconds off pole in a new car at a new track, so I’m not too unhappy. Not too happy, either. We’ll see what tomorrow brings.

    Anyway.

    @Spencer: If you crash your own car, you have to pay for it, assuming your insurance doesn’t. (Some insurance companies will pick up track damage once.) If you crash GM’s car, or anyone else’s car, and you are not on Car and Driver’s masthead, your career in this business is over. If I had wrecked the CTS-V I could expect to never attend another track event again with a manufacturer. So, for that reason there is plenty to be cautious about.

    The whole idea of “how do you decide how fast to go” is worth an article in itself, but suffice it to say that every racing driver has kind of a risk/time continuum in his head. I can run time x:xx at Mid-Ohio all day with zero chance of crashing, time x:xx with a 5% chance of crashing, or time x:xx with a 50/50 chance of crashing. Those are decisions you have to make on the fly. Sometimes the decisions are wrong; I have hit the wall at racetracks before, always in my own car or one for which I was paying damages.

    @no_slushbox: My Phaetons are gone, or I would have brought one. I think you and RF are of the same opinion regarding the Challenge. I tried to get a car, and so did Eddy, and so did Robert. Nobody wanted to play. RF was of the opinion I should stay home, and I can see his point, but I wanted to at least take a shot at it.

    And, I will say for my own amusement that nobody at that event who was new to both the track and their car came within two seconds of my time.

  • avatar
    therealtruth

    A month from now (any beyond) here’s what will be remembered from this event.

    1.) GM proved a point. The CTS-V is an incredible track sedan. Possibly the fastest on Earth.

    2.) Other manufacturers knew this, and didn’t have the balls to show.

    * End of story. Everything else is fluff and will soon be forgotten.

  • avatar
    Spencer Williams

    @Jack: Thanks man, I appreciate your responses and information in the comments. I love, love, love when writers respond to questions/critiques to their posts in a thoughtful manner and provide more information. I never considered the consequences of crashing a company test car, but it makes total sense. You’ve gained a fan.
    I was hoping for a similar writeup from Wes Siler, but the “editor” over there seems too focused on promoting himself and taking credit for setting up the event rather than providing anything interesting. Fail.
    And I for one would love to see on article on “how fast do you decide to go?” on a racetrack.

  • avatar

    Jack, thanks for shedding some light on the event. No_slushbox is right that you really didn’t participate in the challenge, but you did try in your own car (see, if you brought a Corolla, your brakes wouldn’t fail). It makes sense for a kid who likes to drive cars fast to jump on the opportunity to drive the CTS-V. While your driving of CTS-V probably helped GM with PR to some degree, it’s almost certain that 99.9% of people don’t care. In the end the most important thing is if you enjoyed the driving, and that you got back home safe. This challenge event makes for an entertaining story, for sure, and that’s important, as well. Staying home and missing all that experience?

  • avatar
    e85_STi

    BMW M3 sedan > Cadillac CTS-V sedan.

    End of story.

  • avatar
    KnightRT

    More’s the pity there wasn’t a Panamera turbo onhand. R&T and C&D clocked it at 3.3 and 3.4 to 60 and in the mid-11s through the quarter. Since it’s no stranger to corners and apparently underrated by about a hundred horsepower, it’d have been an especially interesting dancing partner for the V.

    • 0 avatar

      It would be interesting, but it is not like it would have done anything bad to the CTS, since the CTS is much cheaper.
      A couple more Lancer Evos, M3s, M5s and others in that vein would have been nice though.

  • avatar
    davey49

    Cooper’s time in the M3 makes me wonder how an experienced racer like Bill Auberlen would have accomplished.

  • avatar
    postjosh

    Jack Baruth :
    October 30th, 2009 at 10:48 pm

    Without Michael’s outstanding drive, I had a two-second gap to the next competitor at my chosen pace. Why push any harder, knowing that a 140-mph excursion into a barrier in someone else’s car, more than six hundred miles from my home and six-month-old son, is increasingly likely the harder I push?

    jack -

    you don’t need to justify anything to anybody here. thank you for your dedication and making the effort to communicate your perspective on the event.

  • avatar

    >>>RF was of the opinion I should stay home, and I can see his point, but I wanted to at least take a shot at it.

    I think it was well worth it. At least for us, the readers. This was definitely the most interesting piece on TTAC in quite a while, from several points of view.


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  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • Tycho de Feyter, China
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India