When you've got a sub-$500 RX-7 with a bad rotor squaring off against a sub-$500 Malaise Continental at the dragstrip, you know it's going to take some time for them to traverse 1,320 feet.
Hmmm… 25.766 seconds is a bit slow for an RX-7, we'll admit (the '76 Continental managed to get into the 17s, eventually), but the crowd at the No Problem Raceway dragstrip didn't mind. They were there to watch LeMons cars and BABE Rally cars
blow up on the track roar down the quarter-mile!
The BABE Rallyers started to roll into No Problem on Saturday afternoon, having driven their heaps down from New York. Their cars and trucks fit right in with the LeMons cars, though their tool collections were noticeably smaller. In addition to the Trashwagon Toyota Camper here, we saw a Plymouth Volaré, an 80s El Camino, a frighteningly rusty Volvo 244 Turbo, a Fiero, an Olds 98 convertible, and a vast green aircraft carrier of a Lincoln Continental.
Once the day's LeMons race session ended, any racer or rallyer with $20 in his or her hand could line up at the dragstrip and go to it. Adding a note of hilarity, plenty of locals in 12-second Mustangs and the like showed up, which led to such entertaining matchups as a BABE Ford LTD with driver and passenger in full clown suits taking on a nitrous-snorting, wheelstanding 11-second Bronco. The Mopar F-Body Phanatics team decided that their Slant Six could take on all comers, provided they lightened the car by removing doors, hood, and trunk.
None of the LeMons cars had passenger seats, so I bummed a ride down the strip in this 460-powered, bling-enhanced Continental Mark IV. It wasn't so quick, but managed some excellent burnouts.
In the other lane was the Blue Goose VW GTI, which racked up the quickest quarter-mile time of all the LeMons and BABE drag racers: 15.8 seconds. Most of the LeMons cars were in the 16s; even the Celica that took the checkered flag the next day had a best time in the high 16s. Unfortunately, many of the LeMons teams declined to participate, fearing that they'd break their race cars (as if pounding the crap out of their cars on a road course all day long is considered low stress), so we decided to give each LeMons team that drag raced a Get Out Of The Penalty Box Free card for the next day's racing.