Thanks Barry and Barcheta.
Well as you know it has been a while since the GT4 was around but I remember that suspension set up can have quite a profound effect on how a car behaves at higher speeds. No doubt there are some current GT4 owners that could advise as to how theirs behave at the upper end speeds.
There is no way in living hell that I would go anywhere near that kind of madness these days, 25 years down the track. So much has changed. There are another 600,000 people living in Auckland Hamilton area, there are 3 times as many police on that road these days, and then there are the hoards of "cell phone police" only to ready to report drivers even barely breaking posted limits let alone what we got up to that day. Mind you the cell police would need to have impossibly good eyes to pick up a number plate at the overtaking speeds we were hovering at.
The Cell Phone Police
Heres an amusing story regarding the "cell phone police" that happened quite a few years later. I was then driving an Alfa 75 TS that I had had tricked out suspension wise and was driving down to Wellington, about 650kms south, the bottom of the North Island. Anway, I had picked up a hitchhiker and generally had been driving in a spirited fashion but nothing silly, maybe 130kms overtaking on the long open stretches, but mostly hovering around the speed limit. Anyway about 2 weeks after the journey, I got a message from my housemate that a cop from down country, Taihape, wanted to speak to me and that I should ring him back on the number left. Hmm, there was only one thing that a cop down there would want to speak to me about. So after a little cogitation I rang back, my escape route planned. He answered the phone.
"Yes hello this is Officer Blogs, thanks for ringing me back. On or around the blah blah of May were you driving on SH1 south of Taihape?"
"I could well have been in that area around then as I drove to Wellington"
" Well I have received a report that you were driving dangerously/ at excessive speed down the the long straight south of blah blah overtaking a silver blah blah".
(Complete BS, The straight was 2ks long downhill and one could till the end of time down it, not possible to be dangerous overtaking there. But cops as we know often try to inflame to get a reaction and or a stupid response they can work on.)
"Well officer that is probably true but I cannot help you with your enquiry". "Why is that?"
" Well officer I was asleep".
" What do you mean. How could you be asleep?"
"Well officer I picked up a young hitchhiker just south of Hamilton and by the time I got to Taupo I was too tired to drive so I asked the hitcher to drive. I was asleep in the passenger seat".
The cop then asked me what the hitcher looked like. So I described myself exactly. For obvious reasons. The cop then said. Wait right there I will ring you back in 5 minutes. No doubt to ring back the complainant to verify the description, which of course matched perfectly. He rang back, a very circumspect and suspicious tone in his voice, knowing he was toast. He then asked me the hitchers name and I told him that it was Dave and he is a second year architecture student at Auckland University. All true. He told me to never again allow a hitchhiker to drive my car again. It never ceases to amaze me how many meglamaniacal f'ken idiots there are out there that wear uniforms that have to make up their own' new laws to give them a more profound and far reaching sense of power of what they think is right. I have had US CBP officers on the Montana Canada border do things that are so far beyond contaminated they should be put in a cage themselves. Fortunately no one escapes cause and effect...Contrary to what they may think.
Here's another driving related yarn that is also a bit past the "edges of normal everyday living", that some may find entertaining. Once again in the Bilsteined, nolathaned, stiffer springed, bigger anti roll barred, 45 series tyred, Alfa 75 TS. Once again driving on a secondary NZ road, this time between Hastings and Ekatahuna. I saw a couple of mid 20's NZ natives standing on the side of the road with their brown thumbs out looking for a lift. Now I am not a racist by any stretch of the imagination and used to always pick up anyone looking for a ride, irrespective of colour. Both of these guys had tats, lots of, black leather jackets and looked pretty unkempt so I kept on driving. Then a little voice in the back of my head suggested that I might be being a little judgemental in my not stopping as I normally would, so I hooked a U'ey and pulled over asking these 2 roughies where they were going." Palmerston bro" they replied. "Okay" I said get in, rueing the decision to stop, after the closer inspection. Ah well what is done is done, we will see if my intial instincts were right.
Now the Alfa was by no means a peach but it was red, it did have a good looking set of wheels, and I had put a new saffron coloured, leather recaro interior in it, so by rural NZ standards it did look a little fancy, I guess. This was perhaps why the the tattoed and unwashed ones now sharing my car, one in the passenger seat and the other in the back seat, were looking around inside the car quite obviously, checkin it out. We took off and I asked them why they were heading to Palmerston North and one of them told me they were going there to sell a small carpet they had with them. They aparently had heard there was an old man there that would buy old rugs. Great, so now I am helping these two thugs sell what was undoubtedly a stolen antique prayer rug. After a surprisingly short period of time after the intinial "hello, whats doing guys" intro, the native in the back seat started to comment on my vehicle and how nice it was. "Geez bro, dees is a pretty flash car, bro". To which I repied I guess so. Now unless you have heard a rough NZ native speak it is impossible for me to convey the inflection that enters their speech when they are curious about some thing they want, but their voice takes on a tone that clearly indicates that they are plotting something untoward. Similar to what you get on the big screen in the scraggly bits of the US of A.
His next move was to suppose in a very open manner that I must have quite a lot of money. "Geez bro, you must have quite a lot of money eh bro if you own a flash car like dis?" To which I said I didn't think so but that I was just a normal nice guy that was nice enough to pick them up and to give them a lift in my nice car. The vibe in the car at this point was not good at all and I could tell these guys were plotting as to how they were going to deal to me. It is the only time in my life that I knew I was in iminent danger of being mugged. After digesting this realisation, I quickly thought there was only one option for me to save my skin and that of course was to drive like a possessed madman. So down to 3 rd and to the redline. I can't remember now where this started geographically but I remember it was around a 40 minute balls out foot to the floor drive. Now a tricked Alfa 75 is a surprisingly well balanced, "fast around corners" sort of sedan and also extremely forgiving. Dialling into proper corners at 160- 200 kms, suspension loaded up, is not too much of a drama if you are behind the wheel, but as a passenger on a fairly narrow road it's going to get your attention pretty quickly. Especially if you are used to floppy, 30 year old, rusting jalopies, as these two were no doubt were. I drove like I had nothing to loose. Didn't really. I figured that if a cop was to catch me that would be a good thing as I decided I had a perfect defense for such madness, and he could arrest the two would be thugs. I knew there was no hope in hell that these sooties were going to try and take me out with us cornering at an average of 170kms/hour. They hadn't said a word for the whole time I was nailing it. Their focus had unquestionably moved from my perceived wealth and how they were going to get their hands on some of it, to them living out the remainder of the day. Excellent.
When we arrived at Ekatahuna, the small town where our routes diverged I abruptly pulled over -and looked over at the guy in the passenger seat and said in a dominant manner " there you go guys, good luck with selling your rug, I'll see ya round". I clearly remember the incredibly loud clinking, chinking sounds of red hot hot stainless exhaust, accompanied by the overwhelming smell of roasted engine oil and well cooked rubber. Damn that worked just fine. They booth got out of the car quite meekly really, no huff n puff there anymore, looking somewhat paler than when they got in.
So with a sense of relief I pulled way from the kerb and left those 2 unfortunates to peddle their rug, cruised my way to Wellington, knowing fully that being able to drive a car faster than the average joe had saved me from some grief.
Cheers for now
Last edited by sirrocco; 01-25-2012 at 08:33 PM.