Cadillac has confirmed that TTAC’s very own Jack Baruth will be allowed to compete in Bob Lutz’s SuperSedan Shootout (also known as the Cadillac V Series Challenge). The race will consist of five hot laps in any production sedan, and will take place at the Monticello Motor Club in upstate New York. Sadly, because of the time-trial format, we will not be treated to awesome footage of Jack putting Maximum Bob into the wall with some trademark “avoidable contact.” Still, TTAC’s resident speed freak will have the opportunity to take on GM’s resident cranky old man (as well as other bloggers) in a face-off that’s been nine years of online confrontation in the making. The only problem at this point is that the bastards at Jalopnik have stolen our whip…
Jalopnik is spinning the event as “Jalopnik vs. GM,” making the argument that because they were the first to respond to Lutz’s challenge (made during a conference call) the event is somehow theirs. Which is an interesting claim, considering the event is actually being organized by Cadillac’s publicity team. Still, it’s understandable that Jalopnik would want to remind the blogosphere that they are in fact still a car blog (as opposed to a Megan Fox/Transformers/airplane/meme blog). And if they don’t mind being mistaken for an arm of GM’s PR machine (and not for the first time), well, that’s between them and their readers. Just to be clear though, Jalopnik and TTAC will be among several media challengers, and there will also be a category for professional race drivers as well as a category for public challengers as well (sign up to race Lutz yourself here).
TTAC’s primary beef with Jalopnik has to do with their choice of chariots for the challenge. When Jalopnik first threw its hat into the ring, they said they’d pit their Wes Siler in a Mercedes C63 AMG against Lutz in his Cadillac CTS-V. Which sounded like a good first instinct, considering the C63 AMG is actually a bit cheaper than the CTS-V. When TTAC moved to be the second media challenger, Robert Farago’s impeccable taste and attention to engine output numbers (C63AMG pumps out 451 hp, XFR does 510 hp) led him to secure a Jaguar XFR for our challenge. Jaguar agreed, and we told the world.
Fast-forward to today, and Jalopnik has suddenly announced that they couldn’t get Mercedes to lend them a car, so they went in and snagged our Jag. Yes, seriously. Jalopnik’s Ray Wert wrote, in what may have been the world’s most condescending email, that “we’ll have an XFR there for Baruth.” Well excuse us if we aren’t falling over with gratitude. The record is pretty clear that TTAC publicly urinated on the XFR before Mercedes turned the Gawker-spawn down, and the very least they could do is acknowledge the fact. TTAC is looking into other possible vehicles, and if you happen to have, say, a Porsche Panamera that you’d like to lend to the TTAC cause, please shoot me an email at email@example.com.
Luckily, the Cadillac V-Series Challenge is not the only venue in which car blogs can take their pissing matches to the racetrack. The Skip Barber Racing School is holding a car blogger challenge to take place at Laguna Seca Raceway on October 31- November 1, in which car bloggers will go head-to-head in Barber-prepared Miata racers. Given Jalopnik’s scurrilous behavior in the lead-up to the Bob Lutz challenge, we hope they’ll send a representative to the Skip Barber race. Jack Baruth will be there with bells on, ready to clear up once and for all which car blog throws down the hottest lap.
Meanwhile, stay posted. The car blogging world has yet to see a spectacle quite like this.