The Good Oil: Giant Lamborghini + more
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Anzhi football team, based in Makhachkala, were recently promoted back into the Russian Premier League, so they celebrated in the only way you should — by building a massive statue of a Lamborghini outside their home stadium.
The club is owned by politician/billionaire and car enthusiast Suleyman Kerimov. He’s known for extravagant parties, owning one of the world’s biggest superyachts and writing off a Ferrari Enzo.
Due to the slight issue of a civil war in the self-proclaimed “Republic of Dagestan” the players live and train in a village near Moscow and fly in for home matches, which have a “heavy security presence”.
None of which explains a 25m-long Lamborghini statue, but it does give you an idea of the kind of thinking behind it ...
Burning rubber starts to fall flat
Drifting has gone legitimate — but at the risk of losing its cool outlaw image. Picture / Supplied
Cast your imagination forward a few decades to when The Good Oil is an old man sitting happily on a park bench, feeding the pigeon-dog mutants with a pitchfork while talking to some wide-eyed children about motorsport in his day.
“You kids and your nuclear hover sleds that race through the deadlands in the Formula Ten Championship, you don’t know what real racing is!
“In my day we had things called tyres on our cars and there was a whole form of motorsport that was dedicated to going sideways. It was called drifting and it was once considered very cool.”
“Wow!” the kids will say, filled with innocent wonder and carrying their school-issue heavy-duty flamethrowers to keep the infected at bay. “What happened to it? Why is it not cool any more?”
“Well, it all started when the Goodwood Festival of Speed started running a drifting section at the annual event. New Zealand’s very own Mad Mike Whiddett was there, after making drifting’s debut at the previous event in a demonstration run. This time he was joined by Ken Block in his 4WD turbo V8 Mustang, as well as Ireland’s Buttsy Butler and James Deane, and other stars.
“Drifting had made it. It was now a respected and legitimate part of the motorsport family. Unfortunately that also meant it was no longer cool, because it was no longer an outlaw. So it quickly became dull, boring and over-regulated. Just like Formula One still is. All hail King Bernie!”
“All hail the Mighty Overlord!” the children chant in response, making the sign of the dollar to appease the watching EcclesTroopers.
Anyway, that is when drifting became not cool any more — June 25-28, 2015.
We are the world
■A bus powered by cow manure has set a new UK land speed record for a regular bus by recording a lap around Bedford’s Millbrook Proving Ground with an average speed of 123km/h. Running on biomethane compressed natural gas, the bus usually spends its days carrying passengers around the nearby town of Reading. The UK Timing Association confirmed the record, also confirming it was the first time a bus had been on the Millbrook track, describing it as “quite a sight”.
■Police in Vancouver received a 911 call from a concerned motorist about an SUV driving around with a large tiger tied to its roof. Police investigated and found 19-year-old Connor Zuvich and his friends were indeed driving around with a tiger on the roof of their SUV — a very large stuffed toy tiger. Zuvich told the police that he found the lifelike cat in a rubbish pile and tied it to his roof as a joke. Luckily the police also saw the funny side. The officer took a photo and let Zuvich go on his way. With a tiger near, if not exactly in, his tank.
Toyota wrapped with retro GTs
As regular readers will know, The Good Oil is a sucker for a good “retro livery” story and ... well, that’s it, really.
We have found another one.
Toyota is paying tribute to its racing heritage with a collection of six GT86s wrapped up in classic liveries at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Much like an unwilling teenager being forced to wear dad’s old suit, the 86s have been wrapped in the paintwork as a tribute to the great race and rally cars Toyota has produced over the past 50 years.
Each is inspired by a different model. They include versions of Toyota’s original sports car, the 2000GT, and Ove Andersson’s 1970s Celica 1600GT rally car — the machine that helped inspire Toyota to launch a full international motorsports programme.
The IMSA GTU Celica that raced in North America in the 1980s, the World Rally Championship Celica GT-Four and the Esso Ultron Tiger Supra from the All-Japan Grand Touring Car Championship are also celebrated.
Speedy Aussie car has no V8 in sight
If the imminent demise of the traditional Aussie muscle car (aka “big RWD sedan”) wasn’t enough to convince you the world is changing, this might.
An Australian company called Quantum Performance Vehicles has just unveiled its first car — a stripped-out lightweight performance car in the style of an Ariel Atom or KTM X-Bow that packs a thoroughly ridiculous 522kW of power and 654Nm of torque and weighs only 700kg.
In the past you would have assumed that an Aussie car with 522kW would be a V8. You would be very wrong in this case.
While the GP700 may look like something you would kill with a rolled-up newspaper if you saw it climbing up your bedroom wall at night, it packs some pretty serious numbers into that lumpy, misshapen little body — 0 to 100 in 2.6sec, a power-to-weight ratio that is 60 per cent better than a Bugatti Veyron SS, acceleration forces of 1.2G and a top speed of 320km/h.
155 YEARS AGO
The supercharger was invented in 1860 by the Rootes Brothers.
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First turbocharged production car was the Oldsmobile F-85.