Driven – AMG G55

Coolness is always more special when it’s unexpected. The element of surprise, combined with time and place has a way of etching an experience into your memory in a way that nothing else really can. For example, discovering a new band on the Internet is great, but just think how it makes you feel when you’re at a city pub with some mates and you randomly discover them live. A 360 Modena at a show is good, but it’s more special when one unexpectedly blasts past you on a country road at dawn.

And so it was with the AMG G55. I always knew what the G55 was, but to be honest it was never really the type of car that piqued my interests. That ignorance just served to make its impact on me all the more profound. Continue reading

2012 Adelaide Hills Tarmac Rally

The father and son team of Matthew and Dennis Sims have stormed to outright victory in the recent Adelaide Hills Tarmac Rally, Round 2 of the CAMS Australian Tarmac Championship, held from 18-20th May in the Adelaide Hills and Fleurieu Peninsula area.

Matt Selley and Hamish McKendrick fought hard in Selley’s new Evo and finished a credible 2nd outright. Despite a potentially worrying electrical issue that had them sidelined on the transport for a short time after Friday’s last stage, the Evo displayed serious speed but never realistically challenged the Sims’ R35. However it was a fast, consistent drive from Selley and McKendrick – they finished 2nd outright in 16 of the 22 stages, even winning two of them.

Just 47 seconds behind Selley, and claiming the final podium position, was the pair of Andrew Booker and Chris Edmondson in their Nissan 180SX. The boys punted it hard all weekend and it was quite a sight to see. From the outside it looks just like any 180 you see around the streets, but lurking beneath is a comprehensively prepared and setup tarmac rally car.

The quickly-becoming-famous Jones Brothers claimed first place in the Classic Outright category. It’s really quite an incredible story – brother’s Peter and Bryan Jones built the Torana from scratch themselves, even down to making a makeshift spray booth in their carport so they could paint it. The car looks immaculate, it sounds like a V8 should and has plenty of pace to back it all up. What more could you want? Continue reading

Clipsal 500 2012 – the “support categories”

For me, the term ‘support categories’ at the Clipsal 500 is just a little ironic. I think the V8 Supercars are the support category, and that Australian GT, Carrera Cup, Formula 3 and Touring Car Masters are where it’s at. I was tempted to report on the Clipsal 500 weekend and completely ignore the V8’s, but I’ll write a separate post about them later. For now, let’s look at the good stuff…

The Touring Car Masters provided good racing, as usual. Sadly the Porsche’s didn’t end up figuring in the results although in Sundays handicap race Greg Keene started on pole and managed to hold off John Bowe and Brad Tilley to stay in the lead for more than an entire lap. Sadly Amanda Spark’s 911 was punted off into the wall here when John Nelson attempted to pass on the inside and locked a brake. The poor 911 looked heavily damaged, but a closer inspection revealed it was just mostly fibreglass damage to the front guard and bumper. I have no doubt it will be repaired and back out for the next race. Continue reading

Preview – Clipsal 500 2012

It’s mad March in Adelaide which means one thing for racing nuts – Clipsal is in town.

Contrary to popular comment, the Clipsal isn’t completely a sordid bogan affair – in addition to the familiar rumble of the V8 engine and the sound of a cracking tinnie, there is also a lot of really refined, world leading, high tech stuff happening both on and off track. This is probably going to be of more interest to our readers, so Any Given Reason will be working hard to show this side of the event.

Look for these posts in the coming days – for now, here’s a sneak preview. We’ll be back at the circuit before dawn tomorrow, our dreary eyes peeled for that something special to show.