Friday, May 30, 2014

Finally picked up the new engine!

I'm very excited now that Pat and I have picked up my shiny new (OK, old and used) engine from EngineLand, a Japanese engine import shop. I hope Pat can install is as soon as possible and that I can start driving the darn car! I don't actually have a ton of free time to attend events, but I think at this point, I would even enjoy just driving on the street a bit.

The weather is very nice these days and Alex and I get to spend a lot of time outdoors with Jules. Here he is in front of our favourite supermarket, PA, on the last day before their move to a new location.


Here's J. in Old Montreal playing with the toy Mini Alex brought him from Hawaii. He loves Mini's!


We took Jules to the Tam-Tam on Mount Royal last Sunday. Not my favourite choice of activity, but he seemed to enjoy it.


Physically, I have had an uncomfortable week, as I deeply aggravated a sciatic nerve issue when I went for a 10 km run last Monday. The run itself was fine (not quick, but fine). However, beginning on Tuesday, I had a lot of pain in my lower back. I can barely sit down for more than a few minutes without having to change positions, and it isn't easy to sleep either. Luckily, I was able to get a last-minute appointment with a physiotherapist yesterday and the situation is somewhat improved, although I am still pretty uncomfortable. Hopefully, by doing the exercises the physio prescribed, things will improve.

We are fast approaching vacation season. Alex and I are heading to Vancouver at the end of next week for 4 days, and a couple of weeks after that, we will be heading to England on our family trip. I can't wait!

Cool cars spotted:
Ferrari 599
Ferrari F430
Ferrari 360
Ferrari California
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Aston Martin DB7
Audi R9 V10
Maserati GT
Porsche 997 GT3
MGA
Dodge Viper SRT-10
Mercedes E63S Wagon

Not sure if this is a "Scuderia" edition
I absolutely love these 80's style wheels on a modern Ferrari
One of my favourite cars of the past few years
Jules has a toy 599 and he knows this is a Ferrari
Another case where the right wheels improve a car: 997 wheels on a 996 turbo

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Still no Civic... thinking about affordable classics

I am seriously wondering if I would be better off owning a classic car instead of a race car. I guess I will decide in the next few months, once I get the Civic back.

I came across this 635csi in the Ontario classifieds:


It's a bit pricey at 8999$, but if you consider that my plan was to buy a car for 5000$ and then upgrade it, it's not so bad, given that it has the following:

Bilstein B8 Sport Shocks from Germany 
Lowering springs
15mm rear spacers from Stance Factory
New Stebro Performance exhaust system ($1,100) 
Used BavAuto headers 
MotorWork Front and Rear Sway Bars
Dinan Chip
BBS wheels

These are all items I would have eventually liked to add. If this were a straight trade for the Civic, I would probably take it. I don't think the Civic is worth nearly enough though...

I cam across this car on another motoring website. The 5-series can look pretty cool when it's properly modified.


As I was walking around the neighbourhood with J. and my sister, we came across a garage that fixes almost exclusively new Mini's. Jules is fascinated with Mini's. It's a car he easily identifies on the street (along with 911's and Fiat 500's). There were about 15 of them there. The garage owner, a friendly guy named Adam, asked Jules if he wanted to sit in one. He loved the experience, as can be seen here:



I'm not trying to make the boy into a gear-head, but I'm not not-trying either.



Anyway, Pat says we will pick up the Civic engine next week. I hope we do! It feels like the track driving season is slipping away... this is maybe why I am thinking of classic cars so much: you can just take them out any time, right?

Cool cars spotted:
Ferrari 599
Ferrari F430
Ferrrari 360
Ferrari 458
Shelby GT350
Delorean
Lotus Evora
Maserati GT
Maserati Ghibli
BMW 2002
AMG SLS
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Audi R8 V10
Hummer H1

Cool car, awesome colour
300 CE-24... future classic?
Ultra clean, but I don't love these wheels for this car

Monday, May 12, 2014

Another race school goes by, still no laps on track for me!

At least the students got a lot of track time. As is often the case at Calabogie, some of my advanced students had some pretty neat track machines, including this BMW 135 race car and this Porsche 997 GT3 Cup car. I also had 5 Mustangs in my group of 13, including a 302R race car.







Sadly, Jules was sick with had-foot-mouth and I ended up leaving him and Alex at home. He is recovering and his usual good mood has returned. Alex is going to Hawaii for a conference tomorrow for 6 days, so it will be just Jules and me at home (although my mom may stay over for a couple of days).

My race car is still not ready. I hope it will be soon though... this summer-like weather is really making me miss my car...

I have to say that the M3 is a fantastic car for eating up highway miles. Even the super-boring drive between Montreal and Ottawa seemed to go by quickly.

Speaking of street cars, I managed to arrange a little test drive of Matt Miron's AMG C63 at Calabogie. He was gracious enough to hand over the keys so I could try it on the back roads of Calabogie. A short drive was enough to convince me that I would rapidly lose my license driving a car with this much torque. Every time I floored the gas in 3rd gear, I was going ridiculously fast within a couple of seconds. It's hard to believe Mercedes ever decided to produce such a beast of a car...


Mustangs weren't the only popular car: there were a bunch of Scion FRS (and Subaru BRZ). The cars are impressive on track, and I think the owners had a great time. 


Spotted in the paddocks at Calabogie
Cool cars spotted:
Nissan Fairlady Z
Nissan GTR
Datsun 280Z
AMG E63 wagon
AMG G55
BMW M5 E28
BMW M5 E39
BMW 320i E21
Lexus ISF
Shelby GT500
Hummer H1
Rolls Royce Wraith
Audi RS4
Audi RS6
Jaguar XF-R
Jaguar XKR-S
McLaren MP4
Porsche 997 GT2
Porsche 991 Turbo
McLaren SLR (!)
Lamborghini Aventador (!)
Lamborghini Gallardo
Volvo P1800
Ferrari 599
Ferrari 360
Ford GT
Saab 9000 Aero
Acura NSX
Mazda RX7 FD
Aston Martin Virage
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
New SRT Dodge Viper