By on December 17, 2011

I’m still recovering from having my tonsils hacked out with pinking shears, so I couldn’t get to Texas to judge at the 2011 season-ending 24 Hours of LeMons race at Eagles Canyon Raceway. Fortunately, the LeMons Supreme Court has tentacles everywhere, and they’ve sent in some photos showing how Friday’s prerace BS Inspection went down.
Even after a Fiat 131’s transmission failure blasted a giant hole in the car’s floor in New Jersey earlier this year, Poage Ma Thoin Racing hasn’t let that scare them out of running their Texas Brava.
NSF Racing, fresh off back-to-back Judges’ Choice (for their ultra-classy Mercedes-Benz 450SEL 6.9) and Index of Effluency (for their terrifyingly rusty 1963 Plymouth Fury) trophy wins, now brings a somewhat battered example of vintage Mopar muscle: this 1965 Barracuda with 340 and 4-speed. Knowing the aptly named NSF Racing, this thing is probably going to break in half 30 minutes after the green flag Saturday morning… and then they’ll fix it with zip ties.
Texans love their Taurus SHOs. Five of them showed up for the race. That means the one that keeps running will have four engine/transmission/suspension parts donors handy.
We’ve been agitating for someone to run a V8-powered W126 Mercedes-Benz, and so this 560SEL makes all the LeMons Perpetrators very happy. Who’s running it? Who else but slam-dunk 2011 Legend of LeMons honoree Brandon, who won the Index of Effluency with his W110 Benz in June and has spent the rest of the year dragging his terrible Jetta to LeMons races all over the country. Just look at this fine racing machine! No weak points!
This is some crucial racing gear right here.
The last time LeMons came to ECR, the strangely turbocharged (and barbecue/whiskey-still-equipped) Sensory Assault RX-7 won the Index of Effluency. Now the team is back, this time with a huge, rearward-facing turbo boost gauge. Why? To intimidate the competition. Now that’s racin’!

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23 Comments on “A Barracuda, Speedy Monzales, and a Luxurious W126 Benz: BS Inspections of the Heaps In The Heart Of Texas 24 Hours of LeMons...”

  • avatar

    Index of stupidity(?): using a quickly rotating tool which predictably throws-off hot grinding debris (here grit and steel) while wearing no face or eye protection! Ear protection, you ask? Fuggedaboutit!,

  • avatar

    i’d think the Momo/Benneton steering wheel would be almost $500 alone… those things are oddly desirable in some circles.

  • avatar

    The Benz is alive:

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Now I’ve got la cucaracha stuck in my head…

  • avatar

    I love the ‘cuda. Does NSF stand for National Science Foundation?

  • avatar

    My money is on Speedy. Monzas were available with V8s. I had one back in high school. But you had to yank the motor out to change the plugs. When doing just that one weekend, me and some friends decided to drop a beefed up 350 under the hood. Dyno’ed out at 325 hp. Which was an awful lot for the mid 80s. I ended up selling that car for like 10 times for what I paid for it. Paid for my first year of college.

  • avatar

    Not to be nit-picky, but isn’t Speedy Monzales actually a Pontiac Sunbird?

  • avatar

    My first car was a 560SEL. It’ll be interesting to see how this one does out there. My prediction is that even gutted like that, the brakes are going to be unhappy dealing with the weight and the power from the big M117.

    I could warp a set of front rotors in one long, high speed mountain run in that thing. Hell, my W124 300D’s front brakes are similar-if not identical-it weighs about 3600lbs, and I can cook the front brakes on that thing on the street, too. It takes a lot more work to do so than it did with the 560, and I imagine that a gutted 126 is probably slightly lighter (around 3300-3500lbs?) than the 300D, but the 560 isn’t a slow car and I’d expect corner entry speeds to be higher than what I see with the diesel.

    Brakes aside, at least they handle nicely. Epic body roll (although that one’s been dropped, so… depending on how it was done, it may not be that bad. H&Rs did a world of good for mine), and numb, slow steering but if you drive it like you stole it and ignore the car’s protestations, both the 124 and the 126 will give you predictable, easily controlled oversteer. Hell, Car & Driver noted that the 560 “has a taste for lurid tail-out slides” in their road test (07/87). I used to make something of a habit out of powersliding the 560 around corners because it was basically child’s play to position the back end however you wanted it.

    And the 5.6 sounds meaner than hell when it’s not strangled by the stock exhaust system. The youtube video theeastbaykid linked does it no justice.

  • avatar

    why is there a washing machine in the RX7? and why the random picture of Richard Branson?

  • avatar
    Andy D

    I’m seeing a lot more than the 500$ maximum in some of those cars. Is that rule still observed?

    • 0 avatar

      Sort of – basically, if you’re spending more than $500 to win the race, you’ll get dinged with BS laps. If you’re spending more than $500 to win Index of Effluency, they’ll probably overlook it. Plus, safety equipment (cage, wheels and tires, brakes) don’t have to fit in that limit.

    • 0 avatar

      Are you counting safety equipment like roll cages, battery boxes, fuel cells, brakes and the like? Cause those are budget exempt.

      Like the other guys said, if you spend a little more than $500 to get a slow car ready for racing you’re not going to get sweated for it. If you spend more than $500 to get a fast car faster, you’re going to get BS laps.

      If you take a look at the results sheets after the event, you’ll see cars who were penalized for going over budget with BS laps. One of the highest I saw was like -85 laps at Autobahn.

  • avatar

    Old Monzas never die. They’re just reincarnated as full-blown race cars. I have one.

    I’d like to know how he did his 5-lug brake conversion.

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