17.01.10: Banger racing nerves are kicking in

Time 6:29 pm, January 17, 2010

A banger race. Sometime in the past. Imagine it was an i10

A banger race. Sometime in the past. Imagine it was an i10

I CAN take a joke as well as the next man – but the chaps in the office are taking things a bit far.

What’s going on? Well, as you may or may not know I’ve stupidly agreed to enter an unsaleable Hyundai i10 in a banger race to mark the end of the scrappage scheme.

We wanted to do something special to acknowledge the passing of the industry-changing initiative and our friends at Hyundai kindly gave us a rolled pre-production car to race.

It seemed like a good idea at the time – problem was my naïveity was my downfall. I had absolutely no idea what banger racing was.

It’s just a few old Fiestas driving round a muddy circle, right? They’ll be rules against touching other cars, surely?

It appears not.

Which brings me to the ribbing from my colleagues. You see they’ve not only decided to refer to me as The Stick – something to do with that white suited racing driver of off the tele and the fact I’m rather tall – but they’ve also been searching You Tube and sending me the results.

Unluckily for me it’s not sneezing panda videos, but horrendous banger racing crashes.

This is one that landed in my inbox from the Wimbledon track I’ll be heading to on Sunday… considering the camera doesn’t move there’s more than enough bent metal.

Just fast forward through it and check out the copious smashes and you’ll see why I’m getting that sick feeling in my stomach just thinking about it.

On Wednesday we’ll be heading to the workshop in Hailsham to help prepare the i10, which I’ve already named iTank to make it sound tough.

From what I can gather this involves smashing windows, inserting large bits of scaffolding to protect it in those inevitable prangs and removing lights and bumpers.

How much help we’ll be remains to be seen – my mechanical knowledge can be written on the back of a fag packet and usually involves hitting things with a hammer.

Come to think of it, in this case that might actually be quite handy.

We’ve even managed to rope in the local college’s media department who are using the whole event as a film project, meaning my glorious victory/untimely demise will be recorded for all to see.

And lastly, while searching the You Tube, I found this brilliant video of Fifth Gear preparing for banger racing in three wheelers.

Perhaps it could be worse…

Watching Tom Ford continuously roll the Robin Reliant made me splurt my tea all over my computer.

Right better go clean it up…


Blog: Car Dealer does banger racing in a Hyundai i10

James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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