Friday, June 24, 2005


Okay, so BMW buys Sauber. They get a wind tunnel, a team that's been making strides, an outpost in Switzerland, and what else? Oh, yeah. A past champion past his prime. I must admit to being a former JV fan, however he is consistlently outpaced by his teammates. Okay, okay, I'll stop griping about poor Jacques.

BMW wants more control over their F1 fortunes. Mario Ts comments about the engine being only part of the equation are right on. Most of the top teams have secured relationships with their engine supplier. I don't see Ferrari switching to Cosworth powerplants any time soon, Cosworth's trumpeted reliability not withstanding. McLaren seems to be married to Mercedes and doing quite well, thank you very much. Renault? Come on, they're in the championship lead even though they haven't scored points in the last two grands prix. If BMW wants to compete with these teams, plus the surging Toyota, they need to do something. Considering the top teams and the surging teams, save McLaren, all have strong factory ties perhaps BMW is following a proven path to success. I certainly hope that is the case.

Now if they can only convince Damon Hill to set up the car for JV...

Monday, June 20, 2005

Ferrari Wins, America Loses

What in the wide world of sports was that all about? Sure, there are rules in F1. Sure, the teams running on Michelin tires could've driven slower around the banked turn. But the one set of tyres rule is dumb, in my opinion. It's dangerous, leads to boring racing (which the FIA was trying to prevent with the latest round of rules changes, BTW), and doesn't lead to any advancement in technology that could trickle down to passenger vehicles. I haven't had the need to drive around a banked curve at 300+ clicks for hours on end in quite some time.

My take is that this is more posturing from the manufacturers in their bid for a breakaway series. If the teams that boycotted the race are severely punished on the 29th expect them to decry the FIA. This may very well lead to all manner of musk spraying by the affected parties and perhaps even some withdrawals.

I used to be a big fan of the Indianapolis 500. While my father is a NASCAR man through and through I have always been entrhalled by the open wheel race cars. Every year I'd be glued to the set for the running of the TRUE 500 mile race. Every year until they destroyed the event by splitting the field into two. The infamous schism that led to the IRL. It has never been the same, hotties behind the wheel not withstanding. Now, not to be outdone by their American counterparts, the F1 is set upon doing the exact same thing. Considering it was so successful for Champ and Indy car I can see why the FIA and manufacturers are eager to emulate them. NOT.

This stinks.

Saturday, June 18, 2005


Originally uploaded by arc8ect.
Interesting qualifcation day at the USGP. Jarno takes the maiden pole position for team Toyota. Of course pit strategies play a lot into whether or not a team goes for the pole. Excepting some attrition, however, back markers will stay in the back and front runners out front. It should be an exciting race. This is turning out to be a fun and eventful F1 season, even if it winds up being its last.


Saturday, June 11, 2005

Formula 1

Originally uploaded by arc8ect.
This is a shot of my E39 M5, another E39 M5 and an E36 M3 at the BMW Corral at the 2004 Indianapolis Grand Prix. Doesn't look like I'm going to make it back up this year, but it was an absolute blast. Great fun is to be had at the corral. If you're heading to Indy next week do yourself a favor and stop on by.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

E46 328i Dinan S

My first BMW was an E46 328i. I acquired her in December of '98 as a '99 model. I was one of the first out there riding around in the newly styled 3er. The first thing I noticed after a shakedown cruise from south to central Florida was a lack of driver fatigue. My GS-R, although comfy, wore me out after a ride of that length due to road noise - which leads to louder radio settings - and hard seats. Great for a short sprint, but not for touring. I also noticed the BMW was a tad twitchy. The twitchiness was due to the brand new rubber on the car, after a couple thousand miles it disappeared entirely.

After the first three years I decided she, I named her Steffi long before Andre was in the picture, needed a little more pep. Not wishin to void the warranty I called the fine folks at Dinan to give her the 'S' treatment. She was fitted with a front stress bar, cold air intake, modified engine software, and free flow exhaust. The difference in the mid-range was astounding, it was almost as if she was supercharged. Then tragedy struck. Some nimrod clipped my rear quarter. Then another fool decides to kick in my dirver side rear door panel. Finally, the warranty had run its course right after the windows started to fall from their seals. All told, I'd have to pump a heckuva lot of cash into Steffi to bring her back to mint condition. What to do. I traded her in for a Z4. Although the Z4 is an absolute blast and I love having a convertible, if I had it to do over again I would have kept Steffi. I still miss her. I never thought I'd ever say that about a car. She left quite an impression