COTD: Mark Donohue Edition

Not everyone gets to be an all-time racing great by just being fast. Other things work in to the mix as well: being able to slice through traffic, having unusual mechanical empathy, or possessing a serious ability to make the most of a situation will all bolster a reputation.

Mark Donohue was never considered much of a finesse racer, but his ability to get into a car and hammer it around a track (and around opponents) was hugely respected. Captain Nice was also a seriously smart engineer with a devious streak who loved to rig up rule-bending tricks like special brake lights or high-flow refueling rigs, all in tune with one of his favorite phrases: the "unfair advantage."

Straight and honest? No. Race-winning? Yes. More fun that the uptight SCCA types wanted to think was appropriate? Oh, yeah. Kinda like the conversation 2 fast 2 frögberg sees between a mutant hyper-fast Lotus owner and the arbiters of good and evil, whose ultimate solution Donohue would have doubtless appreciated:

BOOK OF LOTUS, CHAPTER 6

Lo, and the Lord gave unto Profera a Lotus, and it was good.

"But Lord," said Profera, "this Exige isn't fast enough."

And the Lord gave unto Profera a turbo, which displaced the supercharger. And it was good.

"But Lord," said Profera, "this Exige still isn't fast enough."

And the Lord gave unto Profera a bigger turbo. And it was good.

"But Lord," said Profera, "this Exige still isn't fast enough."

"Jesus, Frank!", said the Lord, "what how fast do you want that thing?!"

"I don't want to wait for it to pull and I don't ever want it to stop pulling," said Profera.

And the Lord said, "Sorry, Frank, I'm out of ideas."

And Profera was woebegone.

And the Devil appeared and said unto Profera, "Psst, hey Frankie! Back in the 80's, we did some crazy shit. People were going so crazy fucking fast that they were disintegrating. It was awesome!"

Profera said, "What do I need to do?"

The Devil showed Profera that the supercharger AND the turbocharger could live and work in concert and create transmission melting power that sent his Exige to mind-numbing speeds.

And Profera drove his creation happily with instant power that never ceased, and it was good.

Photo Credit: Jim Culp