11th Jul2017

Sunday Funday with Team Scoundrels

by Michael Chandler

Hey everybody!  No, you’re not having a stroke.  This is a special bonus episode of the CAMcast!  Mike went up to SevenSix on Sunday morning, sat on the couch in the lobby, and asked Team Scoundrels a few questions over a few beers.  The Scoundrels are Anthony Barnes, Blaize Potts, Chase Garrett, and Nico Wallace.  There are probably some more, but those are the guys who were there.  There was also a puppy, and we got a guest appearance from Estevan!  

Stream the episode above, find it on iTunes, Google Play, and wherever else you get your podcasts, or download it right here.  And while you’re at it, find the Scoundrels on their various social media outlets:

That’s a lot!  Get to following.  And while you’re doing all of that: find us on our social media, subscribe to the CAMcast podcast, and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

*Article, Photos, Videos, and Audio clips are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
14th Nov2016

VegasDrift: Vegas Stuff That Isn’t SEMA

by Michael Chandler

Words and Photos by Michael Chandler

SEMA was over!  Oh glory it was over!  We love going to SEMA, but good lord it gets tedious after a few days.  You see amazing cars, but you see them sitting still.  Static.  Yes, you can admire the craftsmanship (or lack thereof in some cases), but you don’t get to see them do anything.  Thankfully, there was a VegasDrift event the day after the show closed.  Earlier in the week we helped Jason Smith get prepared for the event, so we figured we’d pop in and say hi.

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It took a few hours, but we eventually did see Jason.  Before we did though, we saw Ian Perri.  It was nice to see him, and it was nice to see him drift in person.

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Blaize Potts came down, started a small fire, and did some skids.

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That’s not Scott, that’s Brandon!  Yes, Brandon Wicknick was driving a V8 car.  Will he see the light that is low end torque, and not having to wait for the power to come on?  God willing, he won’t.  

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And Forrest Wang is powered by pizza.  Anyway, here’s a gallery

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
19th Oct2016

It’s Over… For Now: Salt City Drift Round 7

by Michael Chandler

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

It was a nice day out at Utah Motorsports Campus!  Mostly sunny with some intermittent clouds, sport bikes from the Apex Track Days event wailing on the West Track, and tires howling in the West Paddock from the drivers of the final Salt City Drift event of the season.  At the end of the day, there would be two winners crowned: the winner of the event, and the overall season champion!  Let’s see how that all played out:

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In third place in the day’s competition was OP Anderson!  Despite organizing and being one of the guys running the event, and despite having a box stock Saturn Sky Redline as his chariot, he managed to go out and slay enough to get on the podium.

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In second place was the man, the myth, the Southern Dandy: Blaize Potts!  We finally got to see his LS powered FC RX-7 ripping, and rip it did.  Put a pin in this, cause we’re gonna get back to him in a minute.

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Taking home the win was Trevor Malan!  Trevor’s S13 has everything that the internet seems to love: sparkly paint, big Weds wheels, a DMAX kit, JDM nose, it’s dumped, and it’s a ripper.  And it has something I love: a dude behind the wheel who’s down to drive.  Doesn’t matter how cool your car looks, or what parts you’ve thrown on it: if you can’t/won’t drive it like it’s supposed to, then you’re blowing it.

INTERMISSION

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This is John.  I like John, cause he’s down to get weird.  Here he is in his Wisefab equipped E36, munching a cone.  It also has some crazy stiff springs out of the Lyfe Motorsport GTR.  It was quite a sight to behold.

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This is Devin.  His Corolla has Arizona tags, lives in a garage in Michigan, and has a BEAMS 3S-GE under the hood.  He drove, in that Corolla, all the way from Michigan just to drive in this event.  And it isn’t some well sorted, fully developed Corolla.  Very recently it was just a lump of 80’s Toyota, sitting in his garage.  He got the car on the ground, got it running, then got it running well enough to drive across the goddamn country to slay some tires.  Think about that for a second.  Devin is the man.

BACK TO SOME ACTUAL NEWS

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In addition to the actual competition, there were two games being played: limbo and table.  Not quite sure how limbo worked, but the guy who won got some cash.  Good job there, fella!  It looked like Blaize was going to take the table win, until Nick Stucky showed up.  He was having car troubles, but finally managed to get his car running.  He did some tandem with Scott Bradshaw, and then he went for the table.  Name of the game was to drift through the last two turns of the course, then slide your car to a stop next to a table.  You needed to be parallel, or close enough, to the table to be in the running.  Blaize set the bar pretty high, or low, but Nick cleared it in whichever direction was necessary.  He slide to a stop mere inches from the table, on his only table run of the day!

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Speaking of tables (AWKWARD TRANSITION), here’s the podium for the season championship: in third place, with an E30 325, is Hayden Campbell!  He might have taken second if he drove the event, but third isn’t bad!

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In second place is the guy who used two cars this season: Blaize Potts!  He sold the KA24DE powered S13 coupe, and was handsomely rewarded for doing so.  Look at that 2nd place trophy and moderately priced champagne!

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And the winner of the 2016 Salt City Drift driver’s championship is: Nick Nengas!  Proving many things this year (any seat time is good seat time, the 350Z is a solid platform for damn near anything, looking like a child has its benefits) netted him the top spot.  It wasn’t an easy task, there were some guys who could shred, but Nick shredded harder.  Now, what do three guys with champagne do with it after they’ve received awards?

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There was much rejoicing.  And so ends the Salt City Drift season.  It was an enjoyable one, a solid one, and hopefully one that has a bigger succeeding season.  Congratulations to the winners, the people who tried, everyone who came out to support the events, and especially the folks at Salt City Drift.  They’re trying to bolster this community we have by hosting these events, and it’d be killer to see some more folks driving, or even volunteering at these events.

Anywell, until next time, dear readers…

HERE’S A GALLERY!!!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
27th Sep2016

The Land of Wind and Ghosts: SCD Round 6

by Michael Chandler

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

Not sure if you guys know this, but it got chilly just in time for this past weekend’s Salt City Drift event.  And I’m not sure if you know about Tooele County, but it tends to be a bit windier out there.  Despite the wind, and the cold there were some brave individuals doing some skids!  Brandon Wicknick came out with the D-Spare hauler, unloaded some cars (including his IS300), then took a nap.  Listen, it’s hard work being America’s Favorite Drifting Ginger.  He deserves a nap every now and again!

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Derrick Lopez was out in his simple S13 hatchback, ripping up the course in his own, quiet way.

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Nick Nengas let his inner street ripper out, and laid down some solid runs in front of the Metro Security SUV.

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That’s a ripper Trevor, that is indeed a ripper.

There was a contest, but I have no idea what happened.  So in lieu of results, here’s a big ass gallery!

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
12th Jul2016

Hot Nights in the City: SCD Round 4

by Michael Chandler

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It was another hot one in Utah, but despite the heat, and traffic, and a massive fire that billowed smoke into the area, round four of the Salt City Drift season carried on.

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There was, of course, a competition.  I’m not sure how tandem turned out, but I can say that it did pull some of the drag racing spectators over to the bowl.  That was pretty cool to see.  On the solo side, we had Blaize Potts and his Scoundrel mobile in third.

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Crowd pleaser Hayden Campbell in second.

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And Nick Nengas & Teddy took home another win.  Next event is back at RMR on August 5th.  Come spend an evening in the oval with us!  Here’s a big ass gallery to tide you over

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
08th Jun2016

Drifting in Black and White

by Michael Chandler

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Drifting is a very colorful thing, undertaken by very colorful people.  This is not going to be colorful, because I did some black and white edits of the photos I shot after sundown.  I call it…

ART

It’s a working title, but it’s strong.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
06th Jun2016

Salt City Drift Round 1: It Didn’t Rain!

by Michael Chandler

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Yes!  It actually happened!  There was an organized, legal drift event that went off without fear of rain!  And it was a solid six-ish hours (drivers meetings, loading and unloading of cars, and so forth) of driving!  Of course local hero Brandon Wicknick was there!  And so was Nick Stucky!  Although his banana mobile decided it wanted to plantain.  And Derrick Lopez came out, in an SR20 powered S13 hatchback, that was a lot like Brandon’s.  Just more pedestrian in the looks department.

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Scott Bradshaw and Dane Seering were out in LS powered S13 coupes.  Scott went with a bass boat theme, while Dane went with a general death and destruction vibe.

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We had some friends come up from Southern Utah, and they taught us some valuable lessons: You can link the whole track if you have a twin cam KA in your 240 and have enough lights, and a stock E46 M3 is ready to party as soon as you pull the right fuses.  It wasn’t just a drift event, it was a learning experience.

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Speaking of learning, there were a lot of new faces out there!  It was good to see some guys who weren’t afraid to go out, suck out loud, and seek out answers as to why they suck, from people who don’t.  That’s how you learn kiddies: go, do, suck,, figure out why you sucked, go again, do again, suck a little less.  I hope we see these guys out again, because by the end of the night they made some progress in the right direction!

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We also had our first contest!  Blaize Potts, in his KA24DE powered S13 coupe, finished in first.  Nick Nengas in a virtually stock 350Z finished in second.  Third place was occupied by Hayden Campbell in his E30 BMW.  This wasn’t just a contest for the sake of having a contest.  There are season long stakes on the line!  Whoever has the most points at the end of the season wins a roll cage, or possibly a set of wheels.  Not bad for coming out and sliding with your buddies!

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The next event is June 18th, out at Utah Motorsports Campus.  This is a daytime event, running from 9am until 5pm.  There’s a mandatory lunch break, so you won’t miss out on any driving because you want a burger.  We hope to see all of these (mostly) smiling faces, along with yours out there!

YOU THINK YOU WOULDN’T GET SOME BONUSES?

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*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
09th Apr2015

It’s a Spec New World

by Michael Chandler

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

The Spec Z field is exploding for NASA Utah, Spec Miata is healthy, 944 Spec provides a solid battle every race, and there’s even a Spec E30 class that has yet to be explored.  Spec racing is a hell of a way for people to get into door to door racing, without having to build something crazy.  The blueprint is right there, all you have to do is follow it.

There are probably a ton of more spec series available, but there are plenty that don’t exist.  They probably don’t exist for good reason, but today we’re going to explore the brave frontier!  Buy your supplies, and prepare to lose half the party to Cholera.  WAGONS HO!

Spec S Chassis

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Drifting is starting to get ridiculous.  700-900 horsepower?  V8s with ridiculously engineered exhaust collectors?  What happened to welding up the diff in an S13 or S14 and getting wild?  It’s been proven that you don’t need rear mounted radiators, hydraulic e-brakes or sequential gear boxes to slide, but looking at Formula D makes one think otherwise.  I think it’s time to change this.  I’ve kicked this idea around with Dave, and we’ve come up with a rough framework for an amazing new drift series: Spec S Chassis.  An entire field of S13s and S14s, all sporting KA24DEs.  The only modifications you can do internally is a hot cam swap (running an exhaust cam in place of an intake cam), and that’s it.  Welded diffs, basic steering angle mods, and coilovers are all you get suspension wise.  You can run whatever tire you want, granted it is the specified size.  Suddenly it’s not who has the biggest budget and most power, it’s who has the skills to boogie.  It’s still judged, but (and since this exists in the minds of a few) there will be completely different judges than in Formula D.

Now, I know Lone Star Drift is trying a budget minded series this season and that’s fantastic.  The drivers have their chose of chassis and can do some modifications (motor swaps like SRs in 240s and such, and engine cooling is open, and suspension is open but no attachment points can be moved), and all the competitors have to run Kenda tires.  You can still petition to have some modifications let in, but hopefully they’re not too lenient with it.  However, if you really want to see who is the best driver, you’d stick them in identically prepared cars and let them go at it.

Super Pursuit

Crown Vic

Travis over at Jalopnik proposed a Spec Panther series/class, and it has all the required legs to be something.  The Panther platform Fords are in abundance and are cheap, and he laid out the rules.  It’s great, and since he came up with it a square almost two years ago I’m not going to bogart his idea.  I’m going to expand upon it, and take it to ridiculous new heights.  Instead of just seeing Crown Vics, Grand Marquies and Town Cars running around, why not expand it to ALL the common and cheap former police vehicles?  Why not?!

Crown Vics, Chargers, Caprices and Impalas are eligible in this series, and they would have to have some of the basic spec requirements (cage, minimum wieght, spec tires, etc).  These cars wouldn’t be street legal, but neither are Spec Miatas or Zs.  The spotlights would be removed, BUT the cars can run light bars provided they’re attached securely.  And each car would have to be painted, or wrapped, to look like an actual police car.  Not 100%, but at least black and white or similar colors to a local municipality.  Who wouldn’t want to see this?!?

WGT: Wagon Grand Touring

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We love wagons.  There’s no shame in that, because wagons are awesome. Unfortunately, with the rise of minivans then CUVs, the humble wagon has started to disappear.  Ford, FCA and GM aren’t making any.  BMW and Mercedes do, but finding one is like finding a unicorn.  This pretty much leaves VWs, Subarus, and Volvo.   And this wouldn’t be the first time a Volvo wagon was out racing! Unfortunately, the Touring Brick would be outlawed.

It would be open to four cylinder wagons, naturally aspirated and turbocharged, so no BMW or Meccedes.  The modifications would be more open for the NA cars, and the turbo cars could carry a weight penalty.  Tires would be spec, but different sizes for the NA and turbo cars.  Cages, obviously and fuel cells.  No roof racks, baskets or boxes/pods.  Having these grocery getters running around would open up some interesting new avenues for competition.  Honestly, some Top Gear-esqe shenanigans like a mandatory pit stop to load the car with groceries would add some hilarity.  Or fastest lap with the most cargo.  The possibilities are endless, like a child’s imagination.

So that’s what I’ve come up with.  How about you?  Feel free to add your ideas, tweaks and your own classes in the comments.

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMautoMag.Com and their respective owners.
09th Sep2014

Boise Drift Day 1

by Michael Chandler

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 Words and photos by Michael Chandler

 

“Who’s going to the Boise Drift two day event?” It was a simple question that was posed to the Drift Utah Facebook group.  I saw photos from the last event, poked fun at everyone who had broken (i.e. everyone), but never gave much thought to actually going to one.  I would have to drive, I had no idea what their photos rules were, or even where I was going.  Plus my arm was still in a sling.  With all that in mind, I posted “If I can find a ride I can.” And that’s when this went from poorly thought out idea to a reality.

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After some back and forth with Hector Jurado and Jordan Collier, I decided to hitch a ride up with Hector.  He, and his friend Riley, were going to pick me up at 5:45AM on Saturday and then we’d head up to the Common Cents gas station in Roy to gas up, procure things and meet up with Jordan and Zack Penman.  We made good time, gassed up Hector’s new Ford F350 and his old S13 coupe and waited for everyone.  Zack and his crew rolled in, and while they gassed up we continued to wait for Jordan.  And wait we did.  Hector called him, left a voice mail, and we decided to leave him.

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The drive up was pretty uneventful, aside from Jordan calling us around 8am to say he slept in and that he’d be coming up with Mike Fulkerson (hereafter known as Mikey) so I’ll introduce you to Hector a little bit.  Before he got into drifting he was a Honda kid.  He owned three EG Civics before buying a his first 240SX off of someone on the internet.  He over payed for it, but it was his!  And it was low.  Worryingly low.  On the drive home the rear struts blew out, so he had to have it towed.  Upon further inspection some interesting things were discovered.  First: the car was said to have “coilovers” and it did.  It had two, and they were in the rear.  The front had compressed stock struts with the upper and lower spring perches bolted to each other.  No springs, just that ridiculousness.  Second: the car was said to have an SR20DET, and it had most of one.  It was pretty clearly an SR20DET at one point in time, but someone pulled the turbo off at some point and welded a “downpipe” to the exhaust manifold and then to the exhaust.  He got rid of that nightmare, and into a friend’s cleaner (and cheaper) 240.  And now he has the teal coupe you’ll be seeing a lot of.

Also of note: the day before we left for this event, Hector did something a decent chunk of American citizens can’t do.  He passed the citizenship test and was rewarded with a tiny American flag!  Also citizenship in this country, but that flag is nothing to sneeze at.

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After a pit stop at the Garden of Eden truck stop, we pulled into Magic Valley Speedway in Twin Falls and unloaded.  Zack and Hector brought a fair amount of tires, all mounted on different wheels for easy swapping between sessions.  We all made our way to the little shed that housed the almighty waiver sheet, exchanged money for wristbands and signed our lives away.  And then we had a driver’s meeting.  And then Hector and Zack went out.

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They gave ride alongs to whomever wanted one, and they were eventually joined on track by a fellow named Worm.  He proceeded to make some serious runs in his bone stock 350Z, while being chased by his friend in the camera car.  That camera car happened to be a turbo single cam Civic hatchback, and it kept up with everyone fairly well.  And well is how things were going, and then Zack’s problems began.

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In the course of the day his car decided to stop working entirely (top photo) and then shed a wheel.  Also along the way he managed to hurt his wrist, but he wasn’t too torn up about any of it.  His car started up again, and he got his wheel back on and went out to give more rides and play a fun little game with Hector.

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And that game was “Who can touch the wall on the front straight?” As we can see here, Hector was the victor.

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At this point you’ve seen Hector, Zack and Worm taking cuts.  They weren’t the only ones doing so! From the top down we have Jason in the multicolor Rustang, David (one of our gracious hosts) in his SR20DET swapped Corolla, Brad and the little Miata that tried, and Mike in his missiled out S13 coupe.  In a previous post I referred to Mike’s car as the “community” car because I saw many people who weren’t Mike drifting in it.  It’s not wrong, or weird.  Just pointing out Mike’s trust and generosity.

All was fun and well, and fairly normal for a drift event.  Then two fairly unique Toyotas appeared.

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First was Dennis Niedrich’s Previa.  It had a roll cage (sort of) and no doors aft of the front ones.  The bench seat was hanging around, and it was eventually mounted back in the van… Backwards.  If someone like myself (but obviously not me because I can’t be trusted to do so) were to give out awards, Dennis would get one because that looked like the most fun.  This is why I don’t give out awards anymore.

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Parked next to Dennis in the paddock was this black Celica Supra.  Seeing one out and about, and ready to shred tires is a hoot in and of itself; however, this one became the biggest hoot when I saw the 1UZ-FE sitting under the hood.  Dane, the fellow who built this, barely finished it in time to come down from Boise to Twin Falls.  He said that that drive was basically the big shakedown run.  The drive served its purpose, because (from what I could see) the car ran flawlessly.  Speaking of 1UZs…

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Guess who finally showed up. The trio of Jordan, Mikey and Brandon Wicknick (America’s Favorite Drifting Ginger! TM.  In your face Forsberg!) pulled in around 5pm, and were mostly unloaded by 5:30.  I say mostly because Jordan’s transmission got caught on the trailer as he was backing off of it, and the car kept dying.  Eventually he got off the trailer, and along with Mikey and Brandon, put on a show:

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The mere sight of Brandon’s Formula D car drew a small crowd, even before it was fired up.  It drew a massive one when he hit the track.  He even took me for a ride in it! I learned a few things while riding with him:

  • How fast a pro level drift car moves and changes direction is mind boggling.  His car is the fastest car I’ve been in.
  • His passenger seat is clearly designer for a child, or a very slim human being.  I barely managed to wedge myself in there.
  • I have no idea how to work a five point harness, let alone do it with one good arm.

After a while we (Mikey, Brandon, Jordan, Chance Behunin, Hector, Riley and myself) piled into Brandon’s truck and went into town for dinner.  Since Brandon was driving, we were going to a La Fiesta, a Mexican restaurant where the give you chips and salsa.  The chips and salsa was a big selling point for Brandon.  After dinner, we filled up some gas cans, trolled the local populace and returned to the track just in time for the weather to take a dramatic turn.  Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures of what the wind did, but I can tell you it blew people’s tents over and almost away and it threw a pop up canopy over 75 feet into a crowd of people huddled around a fire pit.

The decision was made to sleep in Brandon’s 45′ enclosed trailer.  Only problem is the people sized door on the side doesn’t open from inside the trailer.  To ensure we’d be able to get out of the trailer without kicking a hole in the side of it, Brandon attached a bungie cord to the door, and then to a conduit inside the trailer.  Bundled in our sleeping bags, Brandon then turned off the lights, and we slept.

Did we survive the night? Does Brandon’s trailer have a new “door”? If Train A, traveling at 70mph, leaves Westford heading towards Eastford, 260 miles away.  At the same time Train B, traveling at 60mph, leaves Eastford heading towards Westford.  When do the two trains meet? How far from each city do they meet? Find out the answers to those burning questions in tomorrow’s dramatic conclusion!

 

 *Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners.
02nd Apr2014

Salt City Drift Round 1

by Michael Chandler

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It was a busy, busy day at Miller Motorsports Park on March 22.  It was the opening of the NASA Utah season, the Radical Cup made a stop, and in the West Paddock some degenerates excited youth were sliding around like one is want to do when given the opportunity.  I wasn’t around to see any sort of competition, but I did pop in long enough to snap some photos and see people whip 360s through the exit gate of the course.  Someone even punted a cone while doing so!

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See?!

Anyway, the next round is all the way out on June 14 in (wait for it) Downtown Salt Lake City!  Exciting right??  See you then, and in the meantime enjoy the photos.

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Words and photos by Michael Chandler

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners.
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