Ah, Spring…

I tell you, the last couple of afternoons have provided the perfect driving weather and I hope others in the club – or anyone with a convertible, for that matter – took advantage. During last night’s patrol I saw a large number of vehicles with their tops down. The majority were the usual contemporary fare but a couple stood out: a darn near perfect VW “Thing” (hadn’t seen one of those in years), as well as a 1968-1973 era Corvette (C3?), complete with massive blower and intake scoop extending a good two feet above the hood. I can just imagine what the visibility’s like from the inside of that piece…and also imagine couldn’t care less!

BTW, a bit of news. The WFRRPC (World Famous Red Rolling Parts Car), aka the -6, which occupied my garage for three or four years, has been sold. AND, the proper owner of the Blue Doorstop (ie, our most recent ex-president, who upon the conclusion of his second and last term in office joined SLTOA’s Council of Wise and Learned Elders Who Wield Wrenches) came by to collect that car. Seems he and our resident legal counsel are going on a 12-hour excursion this weekend, aka the Missouri Endurance Rally. So, for the first time in a long time, there are no Triumphs in the garage.

Shoot, I may have to do the next BSCC autocross as a course worked and photographer !

Magazine Musings

Back during the late 1960s when I got interested in sports cars and racing (my family was stationed at Grand Forks AFB at the time; I was about 14-15), Road & Track magazine and Competition Press & Autoweek served as my primary sources of information. In fact, I remember reading R&T’s review of the brand new 1969 Triumph TR6 – I think it was the February 1969 issue – and decided THAT was the car I was going to buy when I went away to college. It didn’t happen but that’s a story for another day.

Anyway, was at the mini-mart today when I spied a copy of the newest, March/April issue of R&T. Surprise, surprise: now published only 10 times a year (!), also somewhat thinner than older issues I remembered. I’ve heard rumors that owner Hearst Publishing , which also owns Car & Driver, is thinking of killing off R&T due to low circulation. T’would be a pity…

Whatever the situation, this month’s issue grabbed my eye due to the cover article “The 51 Coolest Cars.” I’ll say right up front, no Triumphs nor MGs for that matter, but there is a fair assortment of LBCs listed, of varying designs. They include the 1969 Lola T70, Jaguar E-Type (no surprise there), Lotus 78, Caterham 7, Williams FW14B, Lotus Elise, McLaren F1 and Thrust SSC. The more off-the-wall selections included the Chaparral 2J and Dodge Charger Daytona/Plymouth Super Bird.

Oh, and the Mazda Miata/MX5 is on the list. According to Jay Leno, “The car Britain should have built. If it had a Porsche badge, it never would have gotten the chick car rap. Plus, you can’t kill ’em.”

Sigh…BTW, if you’re into old car magazines, backissues.com offers up a very large assortment. They include some of the vanished publications like Road Test and Sports Car Graphic (I have a couple of examples of each in my library). Some of them are a tad pricey but if you want to relive your youth or revisit one of the famos old series like the CanAm, TransAm or Formula 1 back when you could actually see the driver, give the site a try.

Rant Mode Engaged

TT Dash    Lexus LF-NX

Darn good meeting of the St Louis Triumph faithful last PM, including the election of a new slate of officers to take the club through the next two years. Otherwise, event planning continues – Including the run-up to the Horseless Carriage Club of Missouri’s annual Easter Concours at Forest Park in about five weeks – and it does look like we’re going to have quite a year.

Now, excuse me while I engage rant mode.

Note the photo on the right.  The vehicle is a Lexus proposal for its next-generation luxury SUV, designated the LF-NX. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I swear Lexus (and by extension, Toyota) have hired Predator as their styling head (the photo’s via Edmunds.com)

Photo left, courtesy of Car & Driver: this is the all-digital dashboard of the upcoming, updated Audi TT. Yes, that’s a moving map display between the two digital gages (doggoneit, I thought we’d killed off digital instruments back in the ’80s). Can you say major distraction while driving boys and girls? I know you can.

Rant mode to standby, we now return to regular programming.


Oh, and another thing…in the summary of cars/drivers which participated in the 2014 edition of Polar Bear a couple of weeks back, I unfortunately missed our duty Detroit heavy metal: the Corvette of John the Marine. As always, his presence livened up the festivities…


Well, the last couple of days (it’s Monday night) have actually shown that spring may in fact be on the way, absolutely great driving weather. Then again, being the Midwest, we’ll see a return to cooler temps, rain and possibly some snow on the morrow, but this too shall pass.

Hopefully some of y’all managed to get out on patrol either yesterday or sometime today. Yr fthfl ed did see several convertibles with the tops down on the drive home from work this evening, including three BMWs, a couple of Mustangs, one mid-80s Camaro convertible conversion, the usual swarms of Miata/MX5s, a Saab and one Saturn Skye.

Me thinks driving season is once again just about on us, eh?