LeMons Racing In One Photo

Jack Baruth
by Jack Baruth

So, how’d these three cars — a 944 Turbo, a Pontiac Trans Sport, and a ’75 Civic — finish?

Alright, that was a bit misleading. If you guessed that the order was 944 Turbo, Civic, minivan, you’d be right. Except that it wasn’t that simple. To begin with, it rained like hell most of the second day, letting the Pontiac smoke our second-stint driver on a soaked track. It wasn’t until I got in the car that we managed to even the score by lapping it three or four times. At the end of Sunday’s session, the minivan was 52nd of 85.

The Civic, on the other hand — well, they were kicking our asses until halfway through Sunday, and they managed to make a lot of other people look silly too. Despite posting a “best” laptime of 2:23.539, they put a major hurting on a lot of faster cars and finished 34th. Consistency matters. Getting the most out of the car all the time matters. Disciplined driving and pit work matters. “The Resistance” had it all.

Now for us: Well, we started 20 laps in the hole, courtesy of Judge Phil. The team got three black flags on Saturday. Things were looking extremely grim. But on Sunday we had just one trip to the penalty box and we jumped up from 48th place to finish 31st overall. Unfortunately for us, the lap timer in the car ran out of batteries before my stint began, so I accidentally tossed in a 1:55.209 on a damp track. The only car to go faster was the Model T-GT, which turned 1:54.451 during the dry Saturday sessions. Needless to say, I heard about that from Judge Phil. We might have to take this Turbo racing in AER and peel some Spec E36 scalps with it.

The race was won in convincing fashion by a 300ZX Turbo liveried like a DeLorean. The “Bert-One” Volvo 262 never broke 2:01 but it was just one lap back at the checkers. I liked watching those guys drive, they had a couple “shoes” on the team for sure. I also have to single out “The Syndicate” and their 450SLC for some commendation. Despite running a 2:16 for a best time, they stayed on track and didn’t break until the final half hour, securing 27th place. I wish the car had been ready to run for us last year.

Last but not least… here’s a rare photo of me and super-awesome Jalopnik fan favorite Stef Schrader together!

Look at us in our Nine Four Fours! Squeeeeee! I think I passed Stef seven times in seventy minutes, but she had the last laugh: “Der Porschelump” finished 22nd overall thanks to consistent effort and solid driving.

Without the penalties and the black flags, we’d have finished about fifteenth. Not great for a car that was clearly the class of the field. But it’s always tough to field a new car and a new team on the same weekend. Most people don’t finish (or don’t start, damn it) under those conditions. But the Busted Racers made it happen. I’m proud to have driven the #95 Rust-Eze this weekend. Maybe it won’t be the last time.

Jack Baruth
Jack Baruth

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  • Tinn-Can Tinn-Can on Nov 17, 2014

    One of those cars doesn't look like $500...

    • CJinSD CJinSD on Nov 17, 2014

      It was a $750 car that the buyer had the poor judgement of addressing its cosmetic issues too effectively.

  • Autojim Autojim on Nov 17, 2014

    Sorry I missed you, Jack. I was, as usual, up in Race Control the whole weekend. Didn't even realize you were there until I saw Phil's report on C/D.

  • Ajla As a single vehicle household with access to an available 120v plug a PHEV works about perfectly. My driving is either under 40 miles or over 275 miles. The annual insurance difference between two car (a $20K ev and $20K ICE) and single car ($40K PHEV) would equal about 10 years of Prius Prime oil changes.
  • Ronin Let's see the actuals first, then we can decide using science.What has been the effect of auto pollution levels since the 70s when pollution control devices were first introduced? Since the 80s when they were increased?How much has auto pollution specifically been reduced since the introduction of hybrid vehicles? Of e-vehicles?We should well be able to measure the benefits by now, by category of engine. We shouldn't have to continue to just guess the benefits. And if we can't specifically and in detail measure the benefits by now, it should make a rational person wonder if there really are any real world benefits.
  • TheEndlessEnigma Simply put, I like it.
  • TheEndlessEnigma Ah GM, never stop being you. GM is working hard to make FIAT look good.
  • TheEndlessEnigma Top Gear of the 2000's was a fresh concept and very well done. Sadly to say there isn't a TV show concept that doesn't eventually exhaust fresh ideas and, as a result, begins to rehash and wear out once were fresh ideas. The show eventually becomes a pale imitation of itself, then begins to embarrass itself, it will get to a point where it jumps the shark. Top Gear began to get stale, the Clarkson, Hammond and May left and the formula failed - surprise! the presenters were part of the magic. Fast forward many years and Grand Tower is trying hard to be Top Gear but it's all very obviously scripted (it always was by felt spontaneous in its original form), Clarkson, Hammond and May are much older, tired and have become caricatures of themselves. Guys, just stop. You should have stopped 10 years ago. Now you're just screwing with your reputations and legacies.