Sunday, September 27, 2015

This thing about driving?

What is it that allures us to it?
Magnetize us to it?
Gravitate us to it?
Is it the speed?
The freedom?
Or just the sensation of danger?

Driving for me has always been a fascination, both safely on the road and when driving at speeds...
Especially driving at speeds...

The realm you enter when you drive at speeds, that which you cannot logically explain... like another world, just you and your car...
You and the car... the car no longer becomes just a tool, it becomes your friend, it becomes your extension, it becomes part of you.
You communicate with it, caress it, and convince it to join the journey together...
When you are in such realm... it is the most wonderful feeling in the world.

Aryton Senna seems to be very good at philosophically explaining this sensation of driving;
"That day I suddenly realized, I was no longer driving consciously and I was in a different dimension from here. The circuit for me was a tunnel which I was just going... going, going... and I realized I was well beyond my conscious understanding..."

Exploring the limits, the limits of grip, the limits of speed, especially the limit of our own limitation.
When everything 'clicks', you notice it by then... how the world around you changes, how things changes around you and the car.
You can feel your own heart beat, you can feel everything around you with uncanny clarity, you can listen to even the slightest echo of your soul.

Ari Vatanen can sums up driving pretty much poetically :
"When the driving is going really well, it flows like a dance.
I almost gets goosebumps while driving... in the same way when I'm listening to the Finlandia Hymm and getting goosebumps.
I get that same feeling while driving, when it's flowing like a dance and it almost feels like I'm not sitting in the car myself anymore, everything happens subconsciously."

Such things cannot be understood by those who never felt it, the love of the cars, the love of the character of the cars, the love of driving the cars.

In some way, for me maybe driving is just a means... a means to escape my own reality and into another world, even for just a moment....

This article is just a sudden whim of mine to try to explain this illogical issue in our lives as car enthusiast, and I know... only another car enthusiast can understand what I mean.

Beside, this is a good reason to post MOAR Group B videos :P

And a driving article would never be complete without Ari Vatanen's beautiful "Climb Dance" :)

Friday, August 7, 2015

A dangerous encounter

12th July 2015 turns out to be a night to be remembered ;)

No, we're not dead yet :P
Occasionally we do crawl out from our grave and update this dying blog and then return back to whence we came, something just refuses to die out :P

Although we have not been very active these past years, sometimes magical things happens late at night in our dreary everyday life in this banana republic blessed by unknown donors :P

Nonna is fresh out of the woodwork, with a new pumping heart and slick new looks we decided to take her out for some refreshing soul searching drive from time to time :)
Nonna sporting new front bumper to accommodate her massive new intercooler :)
The new bumper gave her a new side profile as well but still maintain the original classic lines on an RX-7 FD3S... which Keisuke prefers (convincing him to get a GT wing is proving to be quite a task xD)
Her rear remains mainly unchanged, although she does sport a new FEED exhaust :D
And she has a model to pose with her pictures too xD
(These pics are from the Time Attack event back in January where Keisuke busted her gearbox on his 2nd run... below is a short video / preview of the time attack event together with some other mumbo jumbo we've been up to xD)

So we were out and about that lonely night of the 12th, as usual we went to our normal haunts... Tekali Touge, and Nonna is proving to be quite a Touge monster, just in her 2nd time flexing in Tekali she has already cracked Katyusha's record on the trail o.O

Although Katyusha herself is still in the woodwork for major modifications, Nonna has broken her time set by 6 seconds >.<

Purpose built, street spec touge machine... even her scary stiff hard suspension has been tweaked and are more accommodating for the bumpy back roads that make up our night life :)

But the night just gets more interesting, picked up a call... another late nighter is up and about as well, brandishing his own purpose built street spec wangan weapon :)
 A 2.0 2015 Audi S5 :)
With her massive ass :)
A dangerous weapon developed by a country blessed by de-restricted Autobahn :)
Further refined to dominate its intended area :)

We met up with Hanz and his German pornstar mistress at a shady corner of KL close to the "Naughty Babe, Dirty Duck" hotel :P

Had a few chow then the street beckons, too much time has been wasted talking about ducks and off we go for some adrenaline pumping, ego bloating, death defying, mad, frenzy run to another water hole somewhere in KL :P

Audrey even though heavier and churning out less horses than Nonna, she still gives the much lighter and more powerful Nonna a mighty scare :P

Her chassis is strong enough to feel secure in her running at speeds probably a little higher than the national limit, and her suspension though stiff is still supple enough to absorb and hug the bumpy roads of DUKE highway...

As for Nonna, even though she wasn't built for these kind of sprints and out of her comfort zone she can still go like the devil.
Throughout the run I know I had a distinct advantage against Audrey when it comes to acceleration and outright speed, but at those kind of horsepower demands her turbo lag rears her ugly head...
Audrey can get a glimpse of her nose before her secondary turbine kicks in and she rockets off, so those few seconds of being off-boost from the secondary turbine feels like an eternity when we're playing at this kind of horsepower demands.
At the Touge she feels almost lag-free, we could admire and take full advantage of her twin-scroll turbo setup and double-wishbone suspension to play along the limit of adhesion... but when it comes to outright power and pace, even her twin-scroll turbo cannot match up to modern turbo spool and response.

Also, something we barely felt at the low-speed corners of the touge... the stress of high speed game shows the weakness in her chassis... her chassis wiggles and chats too much at those speed impeding our confidence in her, although she has the weight advantage and excellent brake at corner entry, mid-corner she wobbles and hesitates thus losing any advantage when it comes to the exit... being light weight and cornering machine, she still couldn't shake off the big Audrey in those high speed turns.

Once we jumped into DUKE it was all Audrey's ball game, the bumpy DUKE highway toss Nonna around too much that we felt the time she was airborne is probably equal to the time she was actually touching the road, that was an extremely scary section of the road for Nonna... her cheap suspension being too stiff and too little stroke and suppleness to creased out the undulations on the DUKE, coupled with her weaken chassis, sending ripples of protest from her back end all the way to the front giving me vivid premonitions of consequences should I hit my talent wall at those kind of break neck speed... 
The result, giving Audrey her chance to be all over Nonna's rear end with reservation.
But that opportunity also gave us the chance to capture impressive videos at that mad moments :)
Enjoy and hopefully later on Katyusha may join the fray as well :)