Thank GOD For The WS6 Suspension!
Some of you remember a post from when I first got my Formula, where I was driving at night and came upon the jet black painted log truck with no lights halfway out in the middle of the highway and only my suspension kept me and my car from being reclassified as a convertible?
Then the story of where I was going to work one morning, came out of a corner, and on a straight away found that I was playing chicken with a galloping black quarter horse who had broken out of its pen and decided to run free and at full gait down my lane of the road! That was surreal, especially with the early morning mist, and me there, hauling down from speed, sitting there in my car, in the middle of the road, and watching out the front window and side window as this beautiful black horse walks up to the front of my car, shakes his head and mane, and then slowly trots past my car, snorting and then breaking into a gallop past my car. Unreal...
Well, it happened again... A seriously strange and frightening thing.
I live out in the country, so the road I live on is a twisting two lane that finally intersects with the main highway. I love this road, plenty of curves and bends, I can drive it with my WS6 Formula at 60mph like most other people drive it at 35mph. It's full of long straight-aways, some tight curves, sharp bends, and more straight aways. Some really good left right left turns as well.
So, there I am, Friday morning, coming in to work, getting there early for hardware inventory of the computer systems, and I'm coming up on one of the bad curves. It's just daybreak, sun is just now coming over the horizon, and I've got my driving lights on, but not my headlights. I look up as I'm starting to go into the last bad turn, and my blood freezes solid.
There is a big Kenworth semi truck with a box trailer hauling ass down the road, it's coming into the turn too fast, and starting to sweep over into my lane. Having driven semis before, I know how they handle, especially under load, so I know this trailer can swing over and swat me off the road or if I don't do something quick, I'm going to be a nice Firebird wedge that's going up under the rear axles of the trailer.
Not the most smurfy way to start a busy day. The image from the Metallica video "Enter Sandman" comes to mind where the big tractor rig appears in the dream sequence and smashes the little kid's bed all to pieces!
I just react. It's instinct. No thought. I aim past the trailer and nail it, my hand ratchets the shifter from OD to 2 and the trusty L03 screams. I don't even have time to slam the cold air scoop open, I just go for it on motor alone and start cutting the wheel. It's a tight curve but the suspension still has some good in it and the rubber is fairly high end. The air brakes sound with an ear shattering 'pffffphhhh!' as I blow past this bouncing, metal on metal jinking 60 foot plus behemoth, we're in the same curve, and it's inches to spare if that much. I see flashing metal and ribbing outside my driver's door in my peripheral vision, I see trailer running lights go by the side of my car so close, they actually reflect off the windshield and side glass and if the side window was down, I bet they were a finger touch away! I hear the air brakes pumping as the driver knows he's about to really screw up and possibly kill someone. He didn't anticipate traffic on this road this morning, and like a total retard, he's taken a 40,000 pound vehicle into a curve way too hot and fast. He's going to have to carry over into my lane to avoid jack knifing this thing! That means I'm going to either be in the way, or have to get myself out of the situation. The rig driver can't save me, he's going to be lucky to save himself and his rig!
The L03 is screaming, I'm going to redline, five grand, I shift up a notch, and eternity stretches before me... I'm past the trailer which screams away from me! I have this horrible feeling that I'm going to make it and at the last second, when everything seems normal and I'm safe and I relax, that the trailer will contact my Formula on the rear driver's side, slap it, and send me spinning in circles off the road and into a cluster of pine trees (which don't bend and don't get out of the way for you!) where I'll end up all broken and bleeding and without my 52oz of Pepsi that I start each and every day off with.
I wait. That horrible last second... The L03 is screaming and the suspension is torqued out to the max on the curve. And then the roaring behemoth is behind me, and I'm coming out of the entrance to the curve at full throttle and I hit the binders, cranking the wheel and bleeding speed, carefully so that my own actions don't send me right off the road. I glance back, and see the 18 wheeler fully in the oncoming lane of traffic, right where I would have been had I not nailed the Poncho and closed the distance. The trailer moves over into the oncoming lane of traffic and all I see are brake lights as the driver gets the rig back under control and carries on like nothing happened. He drives down the middle of the two lane for half a mile and then moves on over to his own lane.
Amateur. They must give away CDLs now in Cracker Jack boxes.
He just keeps hauling on down the road, and I'm left trying to thaw my blood and riding a adrenaline rush that would make an elephant's eyes pop out.
Thank GOD for WS6 suspension! I didn't once go off the road while I was hanging that curve at full throttle. All I did was mat it to the floor and turn the wheel. It was screaming, rubber and engine, and semi and Formula, and probably truck driver and Black Echo, but the Poncho didn't let me down. Always look out for the other guy. This reminds me of that song "Save Yourself" by Stabbing Westward. "I can not save you. I can't even save myself. So just save yourself." I listened to that song a lot on the way to work that morning, as loud as my ears would let me play it.