Christmas is one of those times of year that many people have annual rituals. Some folks go shopping, while others take a walk in the woods. I tend to relax in front of the computer with a hot toddy and surf the web looking for super cool automotive videos. In other words, life as usual except the phone doesn’t ring and I never partake in the shopping madness. My sanity is worth more than saving a few bucks on a toaster I don’t need.
For today’s Insider I thought I would share a few totally self-indulgent older videos that have become some of my faves over the years, along with a couple of new ones that make me yearn for spring.
Some crazy moments in motorsport from 2012
Being prepared for the unexpected is one of the keys to being a successful racer, but the 2012 racing season featured some truly bizarre moments that nobody could have seen coming. From a touring car crashing in to a medical chase vehicle, to Juan Montoya hitting a jet dryer, it truly was a weird year. YouTube user 47ambrose42jpm has compiled a bunch of the weirdness for us to enjoy.
Best Rally Crashes and Spins of 2012
Rally can always be counted on to deliver some great action and YouTube user marcel206GT has shared a bunch of clips that he shot himself during 2012. While some of these are actually pretty minor, it is cool to see the number of different events this guy attended. There are some cool locations and even cooler cars.
Japanese Super Touring circa 1972
As video digitizing equipment becomes more affordable, we are beginning to see an ever-increasing amount of vintage racing footage from around the globe pop up on video sharing sites. This means that racing addicts get to see some historic footage that has been hidden at the bottom of a closet for decades. It also means that we get a glimpse of racing series that might never have been shown in our home country. The following video is of the Fuji Masters Super Touring race in October 1972. I’ve heard of the series, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen footage before. This is pretty neat stuff!
A visit with Bruce Myers and the Myers Manx
I’m pretty sure I have mentioned this before in the Insider Report, but I have some great memories of blasting around our York Mills neighbourhood when I was five or six years old in my dad’s baby blue dune buggy. I loved to hang off the roll bar as we drove down the street, listening to the VW engine making its rip snort sounds. So much for safety in the early ’70s!
The dune buggy craze went mainstream thanks to a guy named Bruce Meyers, who created the Meyers Manx fibreglass buggy. The folks at Motor Trend stopped in for a visit with Meyers to learn about the history of his buggy and even got to take an original for a spin.
One of these days I just have to get one of these!
Rotary powered Bugeye autocrosser
Like the dune buggy, I have always had a thing for the Austin Healey Sprite. My dad raced an early car, known as a bugeye and then a MK II version with some success in the mid-60s, before I was born. Obviously I don’t remember those cars, but I did grow up looking at photos of those cars and they have stuck with me.
This video, from the early days of YouTube, shows American autocrosser Jeff Kiesel in his Mazda-powered Bugeye. The Mazda rotary engine is a perfect choice for the Sprite, thanks to its compact size and light weight. The car in this video is the inspiration for an upcoming project car that my 14-year-old and I are planning to start soon.
One of the coolest things about this set-up is the absolutely evil scream of the rotary at speed.