Yesterday, I spent $25 to drive about six and a half miles.
And it was awesome.
Let’s face it, at some point all of us are going to have to pay to drive our cars somewhere – and that’s setting aside the obvious fuel, insurance and car payment bills. Tolls and other fees are a way of life. Some aren’t too bad – a couple of bucks for a ferry ride is kinda fun and takes you back to a simpler time Paying for a parking space in a garage is an annoyance – or a complete ripoff if you happened to pay the equivalent of 30 US dollars for two hours in Melbourne, Australia… could happen, I’m just saying.
But on April 11, 2012, I paid $25 to Miller Motorsports Park outside Tooele, Utah and got to run my car wide open – probably why they call the event Wide Open Wednesday.
You may recall that I drive a Kia Rondo – it’s not the most exciting vehicle… okay, it’s pretty boring. But it does a number of things well, like
get around a racetrack in a hurry carry a 10 foot section of rain gutter. No, it’s not the best track car, but I think it was probably better than the Subaru Baja that was a few cars in front of me at one point. Or the Chevy Sonic with paper temporary tags still residing in the dealer plate frame.
I was interested to see what kind of cars showed up to the event – fartcan-equiped Civics? Militant Corvette owners? Turns out that a wide range of cars were present. From the vintage Nova wagon piloted by our own Scott to a handful of Mustangs, a fusilade of Subaru Imprezas, a gaggle of Mazda 3s and pair of Dodge Caliber SRT4s. Oh, and an Aston Martin DB9 and an awesome Datsun Z with a Ford 302 transplant:
Then the rain swept in. Figuring discretion being the better part of valor and all that, I packed it in after three laps and headed home. On a clear day, I would expect that one could easily run 15 laps – and at a cost of a buck sixty-six per circuit, that’s fun on a level that no arcade driving simulator could match – even running a virtual Ferrari against a real-life Rondo.
So why aren’t you at your local track?