Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Does SIZE really matter?

When it comes to size there are those who disagree but they are typically not racers. In the world of racing there are two schools of thought.There are those of us who have been enjoying feather weight frames with skimpy little bodies for many years. Hey now... I am not talking about the trophy gals... I'm talking about formula cars! Honest! One theory is put the biggest baddest engine you can build into something and mash down on the gas and bully your way to the head of the pack. The other school teaches us to take a well engineered, proven little engine and install it into a light, compact small car and then teach all the others drivers what it's like to know how to drive.

Having driven small underpowered cars for years while competing against higher powered classes of cars I can tell you it is one of the most exhilarating facets of racing. There is nothing sweeter than being passed by a high horsepower car in a straight away only to overtake him in the next set of corners and leave them behind. I can't begin to tell you how much Jon, Will and I have laughed as we stood on the center podium while the other teams asked, "What in the #&!! did you say you had under your hood?" Don't let small cars fool you, they can be just as fast as the rest.

Two teams brought small cars to this year's La Carrera but they came with bigger than life personalities. Not only did these two teams have BIG expectations but they brought some of the friendliest personalities to be found in the whole event. In fact to know them was to love them. I am speaking of car number 430 the 1957 Fiat 600Abrath driven by Stacy, Luca and Dario and Car number 264 the 1972 Austin Mini driven by Pedro Vidal and Jose Abrew.

I could tell story's for days about both teams but what I liked best about them was seeing them every day with the same positive desire to do well as everyone else. The Mini came all the way from Florida and with them was fun and laughter and the support of a whole lot of Mini fans all over the world. The Fiat came from Santa Fe New Mexico and also has Fiat fans from all over the world.

For those of you who have never seen what either one of these two cars can do to a race track, let alone Porsche's, you simply haven't lived yet. Check out the Mini video and you'll get a thrill you won't forget.

And here is another quick video of the 1957 Fiat Abrath hauling the mail thru the very dangerous La Buffa stage. Trust me you better not blink when it goes by!

Speaking of friends in Mexico... My very good friend Francisco Ortiz who drove the beautiful Datsun 510 number 299 sent me two awesome shirts sporting the Monterrey Auto Club logos. He also included the latest edition of AUTOMOVIL Panamericano which has a really neat 4 page article about the 2007 La Carrera along with some great photos two which appear above. OK, so Lucky is not a small car but he is just a little pony, right? Besides, Fancisco said Lucky looks very hungry behind that Porsche. I have to agree. And then there is one more photo of my son Will offering Luca an unwanted lift with our own Fiat floor jack.

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