Emich Track Day

Should you take your car to the track?

Most people who own some type of fast car have always wanted to “see what it can do”.  Of course, on the street this is NOT a good idea!  So what options are there to be able to see how fast or how well your car handles at speed?  Some people are really looking for a straight line speed  that can best be learned at the local drag strip.  Some people want to see how their car handles at speed.  This is best learned at a local road racing track.  Some people may want to drift their car.  This also is best done at a local track.

So what options are out there to go fast and, hopefully, be safe in the process?  Warning #1 – most insurance companies will NOT cover your car during ANY type of track activity!  However, there are companies out there who do provide track day insurance.  Be prepared to spend quite a bit on this type of insurance.  Regardless of the cost, if you are worried at all that something may happen to your car, get the insurance. Paying a couple hundred dollars vs. many thousands of dollars can sometimes make sense.
Option 1: Autocross  – high or low speed courses usually setup in a large parking lot with cones to mark the course. Only 1 car is allowed on a timed run at a time.  You compete against the clock.  Best time wins. Several of these events run throughout the year. Cost is very inexpensive.
Option 2: Track day at a local track.  Road race course or oval.  This option is easily available.  Cost can run anywhere from $100 to $600 per day. The size of the track determines how fast you can go.  Be prepared to slice and dice with many other drivers.  Be very aware of your surroundings, other drivers, the flag system, passing rules, and the proper way to drive the track.
Option 3: Drag racing – Multiple options exist for opportunities to see how fast your car is at the quarter mile.  Special events, test and tune times, and renting the track are all options.  Cost can be anywhere from $3 per run, up to several thousand dollars per day to rent out the track.
Option 4: Gokarting – try your hand at one of the higher-speed karting tracks.  Speeds can vary, but some tracks allow you to rent karts that can go over 100 mph. Most public tracks use electric or gas karts that can go anywhere between 45 and 60 mph. Cost can run anywhere from $15 to $60 per a set amount of laps.

If you are taking your car to the track, be sure to learn the rules, learn the track, and take it easy until you are used to the track layout and the way your car performs at speed.  Back to the formal question posed at the beginning of the article: should I take my car to the track? The answer is a resounding YES!

Mecum Auction Denver

Denver, Colorado Mecum Auction Recap 2016

Mecum Auction year #2 in Denver, Colorado – success.  The crowds were amazing and the cars were incredible at the Colorado Convention Center! This was the second year that Mecum Auctions decided to give the car folks in Colorado a chance to see and (maybe) buy some of the nicest cars around.  We saw everything from what we would call “less-collectible” cars, to some amazing examples of driveable iron.

We went on Saturday and arrived during the collectible auction that happens before the cars go across the block.  The signs and other automotive merchandise sold quickly and at some pretty hefty prices. The cars started going across the block at 10am after the national anthem and what Mecum calls “its anthem” which also happens to be Thunderstruck by AC/DC.  All the people on the stage and ringmen started dancing along with some of the crowd.  Pretty interesting to watch!

The prices seemed to be pretty much inline with what we would expect for the types of cars offered.  So, the results are in!  The top seller for the auction was an incredible 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL. This car sold for $170,500.  We didn’t get a chance to look at it up close, but then again, we would never have expected a Galaxie to be the top seller.  The Ford GT, the 1953 Corvette, and some other cars had the opportunity to easily break that record.  However, those cars were not sold.

The Top 10 list:

1- 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL – $170,500
2- 1963 Chevy Corvette – $154,000
3- 1957 Chevy (resto mod) – $148,500
4- 1967 Chevy Corvette – $150,000
5- 1970 Buick GSX – $1126,500
6- 1966 Chevy Corvette (resto mod) – $126,500
7- 1967 Ford Shelby GT500 – $88,000
8- 1986 Porsche 930 Turbo Coupe – $1965 Chevy Corvette – $79,200
9- 1965 Chevy Corvette – $79,200
10- 1970 Pontiac GTO  (The Judge) – $73,700

We would really like to thank the folks at Mecum for the access and the passes we were able to give out to people at the Westminster Fireworks Car Show!

Rob E

Mecum Auction – Denver, Colorado – July 8 & 9, 2016

Mecum Denver Auction

Mecum Auctions will hold its second-annual collector car auction in Denver July 8-9 at the Colorado Convention Center featuring 700 vehicles including vintage ‘Vettes, modern supercars and two private collections. Bidder registration is $100 in advance and $200 at the auction and includes admission for two for both auction days. To view the list of consigned vehicles when available, or to register as a bidder for this and all Mecum auctions, visit the Mecum website or call (262) 275-5050. General admission tickets available at the gate for $30 per person per day or $40 for a two-day pass; children 12 and younger receive complimentary admission. Doors open each day at 8 a.m. with the auction beginning with Road Art at 8:30 a.m. and the cars at 10 a.m.

This event will be televised.  If you have never been to an auction of this type or size, we highly suggest going for the experience.  The cars, the stuff to see, the food, the people, and to see how everything works is amazing.

For our loyal Colorado Car Show visitors, we would like you to enjoy the experience with a $5 discount on general admission: CLICK HERE

 

Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Badge

Driving the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat = Smile Factor of 10!

Let me start out by saying that I was not expecting a chance to drive the 2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat during the Rocky Mountain Driving Experience put on by our friends at the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press.  I was totally expecting a long waiting list of people or, if the chance came up, a very short drive.  What happened instead was a very nice drive along with one of the SRT manufacturer reps riding shotgun.

The venue for this year’s event was nothing short of spectacular! We drove from Denver up to Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Tabernash, Colorado.  This is just north of the Winter Park area.  The event had several routes mapped out to drive the vehicles on the street and on off-road course for those who were inclined to get the trucks and SUVs dirty. Aside from a nice trip in a BF Goodrich-shod Jeep Wrangler, I spent the entire two days on the road, driving as many vehicles as I could get my hands on.

Now for the Hellcat!  This is the first time I had a chance to drive anything from Dodge with over 400 horsepower.  Two years ago I got skunked on the chance to drive, or even ride along in the Viper. This year I wanted to get behind the wheel of the Hellcat.  Luckily I was able to. Needless to say, 707 horsepower moves down the road at a rather brisk pace when the accelerator pedal is pushed in a downward motion!  The car makes a very nice roar while gaining speed at an amazing rate. The best part about having a factory rep with you when driving a car like this is learning all the neat tricks to making the car do what you want it to. We made full use of the Hellcat’s launch control system to get some quick starts in the book.  If you drive around the Tabernash area, you will see several sets of parallel rubber tracks on the roads.  Each of these was done using launch control.  The set pictured below was done with the launch set at 3,000 RPM. According to the SRT engineers, road conditions were not optimal for a grippy start.  As you can see in the picture below, we left about 45 feet of rubber without the system stopping the wheel spin.  After tries at 2,500, 2,000, and 1,750 RPM, we concluded that the power was too much for the roads. Although, I am not complaining about the rubbery imprints we left on the mountain town!

The car is amazingly deceptive.  Even when you stand on the gas, it takes the power and puts down with a very stable and smooth acceleration. I have driven several 600+ horsepower cars, and this behaves nicely, even with the horsepower.  More impressive yet, the front and rear Brembo brakes made the stopping distances on the 4500 pound car seem really short.  I was expecting to get the car stopped after crossing a couple of county lines.  In addition to going fast and stopping quickly, the car was able to make all the turns at the speeds I was hoping for.  The Pirelli P Zero tires did a great job of sticking, yet not squeaking, around the corners and through the curves.  The interior is very nice as well.  It wasn’t luxurious, but it was better than I expected for a car designed to simply go fast. The $70,000 price tag puts the value for money pretty high.  That is the going rate for a new 460hp 2016 Corvette Stingray.

My personal take on the car is that it would be fun to drive after removing everything that says Hellcat. Remove all the badges and find some unsuspecting Porsches, Corvettes, Mustangs, or other fast cars and steal their money. I am really looking forward to a chance at driving this car at a track sometime in the near future!

Rob E.

 

Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat ProfileDodge Charger SRT Hellcat BadgeDodge Charger SRT Hellcat Burn Out Results Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Interior Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Rear View SRT BadgeDodge Charger SRT Hellcat Monroney