My Wood Slot Car Track Build

September 20th, 2014 by Matt

GT3 Cars on RSD Suzuka Slot Car Track!

GT3 Cars on RSD Suzuka Slot Car Track!

A fun little project I worked on over the summer…

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Bloodhound SSC – New Land Speed Record Attempt in 2012/13

February 11th, 2011 by Matt

Wow, a land speed record attempt shooting for 1050 miles per hour, which is “faster than a speeding bullet!” The Bloodhound chassis is now under construction with runway trials to begin in early 2012. The record attempt will be run in late 2012/2013 in South Africa. See the Bloodhound SSC main site for all the latest news on this amazing car/jet/rocket! Also, take a look at Equinox Graphics, who did this video for the Bloodhound team and does other science–related graphics. Finally, see all the latest Bloodhound videos on their YouTube site. Amazing stuff!!

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24 Hours of Le Mans 2010

June 11th, 2010 by Matt
Team Oreca Matmut Peugeot 908

Team Oreca Matmut Peugeot 908

Man, what a weekend for sports enthusiasts! We have World Cup Soccer starting, the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Canada, and most of all, the granddaddy of all road races, and still the most famous endurance race in the world, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, is running this Saturday and Sunday. The Peugeot 908s of Team Peugeot Total are favored again, but for looks alone, the Team Oreca Matmut Peugeot 908 gets my vote! But will the Audi R15s give ’em a tough race…you bet! The GT2 grid is awesome with Ferraris, Corvettes, Ford GTs, BMWs, the usual fleet of Porsches, a Lamborghini, and a Jaguar going at it. Check out the BMW “art car” too. Fantastic!

BMW M3 Art Car

BMW Motorsports M3 “Art Car”

Again, the fine folks at SpotterGuides.com and andyblackmoredesign.com have come up with a great, printable, full–color car guide detailing all the cars, liveries, and drivers lineups for each. As I mentioned in a previous post about Sebring, it can be printed BIG due to its 2500 x 1618 pixel resolution. It is on my office wall now at a very nice 11 x 17 size.

Tune in the 24 Hours of Le Mans on the Speed channel beginning 5:30 am Pacific Time, Saturday, June 12.

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China GP – Another Wet–Weather Classic!

April 19th, 2010 by Matt
Jensen Button Winning 2010 Australian GP

Jensen Button Wins China GP (Image courtesy GPUpdate.net)

Add a little (or a lot of) rain and Formula 1 shines. This race had many lead changes, pit strategies, crashes, and drama. It was a treat to watch. Again, Jenson Button stole the show in the wet, with his team mate Lewis Hamilton storming up to second place with some dodgy pit lane tactics and trademark super–aggressive passes. Fernando Alonso also stormed back from 17th place after a penalty from a jumped start. He’s a brilliant driver, but showed his true colors when he cut off team mate Felipe Massa while pitting. He takes the “winning at all costs” mentality to new heights!

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Australian GP–What a Race!!

March 29th, 2010 by Matt
Jensen Button Winning 2010 Australian GP

Jensen Button Wins Aussie GP (Image courtesy GPUpdate.net)

Wow! What a change this weekend proved to be in Formula 1 racing! Some wet weather at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne really opened up the race…there were passing and lead changes galore for once. Man, if they could bottle this recipe, Formula 1 would again become the most exciting racing to watch, instead of the shadow of its former greatness it has become.

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12 Hours of Sebring 2010

March 19th, 2010 by Matt
Sebring 2010 Logo

Sebring 2010

Sebring 2010 Spotter Guide

Sebring 2010 Spotters Guide

We’ve got some racin’ goin’ on this weekend… Saturday in fact. It’s the 12 Hours of Sebring, guys! This is probably the toughest race, physically, on the sports cars themselves. The Sebring circuit is notorious for its bumpiness and it is a severe test for the cars just to hold together for the entire 12 hours. And with a great grid lineup, (Aston Martin, Peugeot, Dyson, and Patron LMPs, Corvette, Ferrari, Porsche, Jaguar, and BMW GT2s) this is a must–watch race!

To help with your car spotting/viewing enjoyment, the fine folks at SpotterGuides.com and andyblackmoredesign.com have come up with this great, printable, full–color car guide detailing the cars, liveries, and even the helmet designs of the drivers of each of the cars. And it can be printed BIG due to its 2500 x 1618 pixel resolution. The detail is great when printed at 11 x 17. I printed out one for my (almost) 4 year old son Mikey, and he loved it! (One is on my office wall at work, too. 😉 )

Tune in the 12 Hours of Sebring on the Speed channel (HD of course!) beginning 7:00 am Pacific Time, Saturday, March 20.

Now that the race has been run, congrats to Risi Competizione for winning the GT2 class at Sebring for the 3rd time in the last four years! And it did so against an extremely tough field, including the very fast Rahal/Letterman BMWs.

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Dodge Challenger

March 18th, 2010 by Matt

2008 Dodge Challenger

2008 Dodge Challenger…As Sgt. Fury once said…WAHOO!!!
(Photo courtesy of allpar.com)

Oh…My…God…For those of you who remember the muscle car era, feast your eyes on this. An all–new remake of the 1970 Dodge Challenger, for the 2008 model year. For an in–depth look at this new car, see this article. AWESOME!!

1970 Dodge Challenger

Original 1970 version

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Grand Prix–Are You Ready to Race?

March 8th, 2010 by Matt

Grand Prix, 1966

Grand Prix, 1966

I recently bought and watched the new DVD release of perhaps the greatest of the racing movies, Grand Prix. I remember seeing this as a kid of eight in 1966. (You do the math!) What an impact it had…the stunning cinematography and vibrating, road–level views of the famous Formula 1 racecourses really thrilled me! It also featured James Garner, who has always been a favorite actor of mine.

Having been years since I last saw this movie, I was really looking forward to seeing it again. I also wanted to see if it was as good as I remembered…to see if it still stood up after all these years. So…has it?

Well, in pure racing terms, it sure has. The DVD transfer is crisp and clean, the colors pure with no bleeding. And the racing scenes…fantastic! There is no other word for it. After all these years, it still has the most exciting racing scenes of any movie ever made, period! You get a view of the racing that actually makes you feel like a part of it. Another thing that makes the racing so special is that it featured the actual Formula 1 racing stars of the day driving in the racing scenes! If you’ve ever heard of Dan Gurney, Graham Hill, Jimmy Clark, or Phil Hill, well, they’re in here driving! And the cars of this period were so beautiful…It takes me back to those days as a kid collecting the Matchbox replicas of the cars that are featured in this movie.

But, on the negative side, I also didn’t remember the cheesy melodrama in–between all the racing scenes. Jessica Walter, of psycho–“Play Misty For Me” fame, really revs the cheese meter, and most of the “drama” really rings false, like something from daytime soaps. Luckily, James Garner is his usual likeable leading–man self, while Yves Montand also brings a likeable characterization as an “old–pro” F1 racer coming to the end of his career. Thankfully, this movie is mostly racing, so these temporary drama “breaks” aren’t too irritating.

This DVD also has some great special features, including some really interesting documentaries about the making of the film and the staging of the racing scenes. These scenes were staged at the same time as the actual Formula 1 races were being held, so there was a ton of prep work involved in this movie. And now that the sport has been highly corporatized and become super expensive, a movie like this will probably never be shot again, at least in true live–action! So if you are ready for some real Formula 1 race action, pop this in, grin through all the racing magic, and grit your teeth slightly at the melodrama in–between. Cheer up though, the next racing scene is just around the bend!

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