Weekly Roundup: Green Machine Edition

When I was seven years old my parents got me a Green Machine. Let the record show that at the same age my son was doing 40+ mph in a TopKart — but that’s the difference between having hip urban parents like I had and a hick-ass of a dad like my son has. Despite its lack of an engine or anything approaching high-speed stability, the Green Machine was actually a lot of fun and I rode it until the plastic front wheel showed genuine signs of deterioration.

The Green Machine you see above is even better — it’s the current-gen Camaro SS 1LE. I had a chance to run it around Mid-Ohio for a session. Unfortunately, the track was damp in most places and had standing water in some, but I still learned quite a bit about the car and its massive dynamic envelope. Look for a writeup in the near future.

In the meantime, here are a few things we did earlier.

At TTAC, I covered Dodge’s loyalty oath moment, considered our moral duty to corporations, and asked the readers about the possibilities for a future sporting product from FCA.

At R&T, I visited a new driving school founded by former Skip Barber instructors and took a trip back in time to the troubled past of the C5 Corvette.

Things have been slow around here at Riverside Green, but it’s mostly because I’m still healing from my injuries while trying to work a new day job and wrap up a bunch of existing obligations. God willing that will change soon. In the meantime, as always, thank you for reading!

17 Replies to “Weekly Roundup: Green Machine Edition”

  1. Nick D

    What’s your view on the value of a professional racing school? I’ve got 9 enduros under my belt, including a few in a really rapid Lemons class A car. I’m a voracious consumer of online instruction and articles, but never had official right seat time. I’m pretty fast and have times within a second or two of far more expirenced drivers (partly because job #1 is return a borrowed car in 1 piece).

    Also, unsolicited content for your made in America series. My nonstick pans needed replacing and I just got a set of Vollrath USA made ceramiguard II coated non-stick skillets. The difference in quality between these and Imported consumer grade junk is immense.

    Reply
    • Jack BaruthJack Baruth Post author

      I’ll feature the Vollrath stuff this upcoming week, thank you!

      As far as a pro race school goes… I think the best thing for you to do would be to book some time under the watchful eye of Peter Krause. If you’ve done nine enduros and you are more or less on pace, then what you need is fine-tuning. Nobody does that like Mr. Krause. Give him a ring!

      Reply
  2. Mental

    I’ll shameless answer while you wait for JB,

    Go. A lot of professional instruction is about filling in the gaps of knowledge, not necessarily going fast. A structured school will help you learn what to do when it goes wrong, which if you like LeMons, it will. The biggest challenges with these entry level endurance leagues are the speed differentials. AER has IMSA cars running with Miatas. The teams running get it and are mostly good about it.

    But as an instructor, my hesitation to sign guys off has never been their ability to go fast and safe. It’s their lack of experience when something happens with their car or the one right in front of them. A lot of your street instincts will betray you.

    But a good ( a very important delineation) professional or if you have a teched race car with a passenger seat NASA/PCA/BMWCCA licensing school will get you practice and knowledge about handling an emergency.

    Plus, it’s serious track time in someone else’s car. It’s good networking, and its a great bit of fun.

    Reply
  3. -Nate-Nate

    I wonder if it’s still legal to sell this Green machine toy ? it looks like most of the kids I knew would wreck it repeatedly just to see how fast/crazy/stupid they could get with it =8-) .

    -Nate

    Reply
  4. hank chinaski

    Has anyone made note that the Illinois Nazi bridge-clearing Bluesmobile was also a Dodge?

    I did the Barber BMW school back in E30 M3 days. I never got the hang of catching the non-Ms spins on the skidpad.

    A buddy of mine had a Crossfire C4, and like most, never drove it in anger. It was at least spared the indignity of ‘time out’ dolls.

    Reply
  5. Athos

    Thanks for that Corvette story. Didn’t know they spent almost F-all to develop it. SAE has papers on the development of the C5, all of them a wonderful read.

    When I was growing up, my youngest uncle was restoring a chrome bumper C3. Still can remember the Astro Ventilation lettering in some of the glass. I have liked Corvettes ever since.

    Reply
    • Jack BaruthJack Baruth Post author

      Astro Ventilation! It’s easy to poke fun at GM marketing but sometimes they really did know how to reach into your soul.

      Reply
  6. Ark-med

    Will the upcoming weekly roundup be preceded or succeeded by a “The Critics Respond, Part Forty-Five” vivisection, vis-à-vis the Great SAHM Fratress Furore of _$THE_CURRENT_YEAR_?
    I breathlessly await.

    Reply
    • Jack BaruthJack Baruth Post author

      I’m mulling it over. The problem is that I don’t know what to say about it other than… Sheesh, dude, you’d abandon free speech to banish the phrase “frat-mattress”?

      Reply

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