A Blistering Ride in a Caterham with the Classic Car Club Manhattan
On Tuesday, June 19th - the prestigious Classic Car Club Manhattan held one of their many "track days." Their track days are just one more reason this club is out of the ordinary. Instead of just allowing members to take their cars out, the club goes a step further by instructing people how to truly drive them. We're so tired of seeing idiots in supercars which makes this so refreshing. On this particular day, the track consisted of a skid section (where the instructors would push you into a 30MPH controlled skid) in a crappy VW Golf, as well as an Autocross section. In the skid, they soaked the turns with laundry detergent and once you were in it, yanked the e-brake. The goal was to gain control of the car as quickly as possible. Not good for a bad back, but damn fun.
The highlight was more than just the learning, it was the chance to drive their extroadinary cars like they were meant to be driven. The rides ranged from a modified BMW M3, Mitsubishi Evolution, Lotus, to an Ariel Atom and my favorite, the Caterham. The Mercedes was just our transportation out there, and it was boring as hell to drive back to the city after thrashing these cars around.
At the end of the day, one of the lead instructors took turns taking people out in the Caterham for "hot laps" and drifted through every turn absolutely perfectly. With 175 horses, it's pretty much a pimped out go-cart and as Mike Prichinello (co-founder of the club) said "you can reach out and touch the ground." Which, is scary as shit.
Here's some shakey iphone video of what it was like in this machine. Trying not to drop the phone while hanging on for dear life is a tough combo.