Hey, it could be worse...


Apr 26, 1999
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Overland Park, KS
Got together with some Viper owners just before lunch today. They were heading off for a weekend cruise to the Ozarks and my youngest son and I wanted to see them off. We couldn't go because of baseball games and other fun family stuff.

Anyway, I start chatting with the NICEST guy in our local club (and I'll bet nobody will disagree) who seems to have terrible luck with his cars. I could tell you some wild stories he passed on about the Vettes he has owned, but I will stick to the Vipers for now, including his latest episode:

Last year he bought a used '98 GTS that was plagued with brake problems. On one weekend of practice he went through the pads, the backing, and into the pistons themselves. Another weekend he took the same car and spun out horribly - ON THE PARADE LAP! I think it was brakes again. As he trailered the car down to Oklahoma (same track as Viper Days Finals this year) he came to a toll booth. Paid his toll. Heard a huge scraaaaaaape and a loud SNAP. Looked in the rearview mirror and saw that the toll arm had come down ON HIS VIPER on the open trailer! It ran down the length of the hood and made it's way up the windshield pillar and then finally snapped off when it got to the roof. Wasn't a striped car before the episode...

He finally sold off that car (never got the brakes right) and bought a beautiful '99 GTS in black with cognac interior. Being the very dedicated racer that he is, he promptly put in a roll bar and took it out to run. One of his first trips was to the same track in Oklahoma. He had no problems with the toll booth this time. As he ran one of his heats the car got loose and he spun - and stalled. The three cars behind him did just what you expected - the first went left, the second went right, and the third nailed him square in the back at 75 mph: $14,000 in damage. Got the car back this spring and has been babying it. Took it to the dealer for service last week. As it is parked awaiting service, the parts truck backs into the front corner and pushes the car over two feet before finally stopping. Another $5,000 in damage, this time paid for by somebody else.

And you thought that ding in your wheel was bad...