It all began with a trip to the incredibly dangerous BringATrailer.com…
I’d had a 2004 Radical SR3 for a number of years which I loved, but a 2008 Radical SR3 done up like a Mazda 787B came up for sale and on a lark, I threw in a very low bid. The 787B liveried Radical was four years newer and also had a very desirable (and expensive) paddle shifter upgrade and a spare set of wheels. Who knows, maybe nobody else would bid… Four days later the auction was coming to an end and the car still hadn’t hit market value. Maybe I could grab it? I put in a bid at way under market value and watched the timer go down. A new bid came in, so I put in a new slightly higher bid. This kept on going back and forth for the next (very stressful) 11 minutes (Bring A Trailer always leaves the auction open for two minutes after any bid, so there is no sniping…). At the end of that 11 minutes I saw this:
I’d gone from this:
This led to a number of issues:
- I now had two Radicals.
- I had to explain to my wife why this was a good thing.
- The new Radical was in Los Angeles and I live in Austin.
A quick conversation with the seller solved issue 1. He’d sell my older Radical for me.
The 2nd issue was a bit harder to resolve, but having the first issue solved sort of helped me a bit. I also reminded my wife that I’d be very happy with the newer car and I’ve always appreciated how much she values my happiness. I also got her a dozen roses delivered to her office. I think I’ll be OK on this one.
Depending on what my first Radical goes for, I might come out of this pretty clean. I did get the 2nd car at the lower end of market value and it did have a very nice set of extra wheels with brand new tires. Add in the pneumatic paddle shifters and I don’t think I would have been able to add those upgrades to my current car without going over the purchase price of the new car minus the sales price of my old car (we’ll see what my old car goes for…).
The final issue began this past weekend’s great adventure. When I first purchased the white Radical that meant I’d have to get a truck and trailer. Since both my wife and I instruct for various organizations I ended up getting a two car covered trailer and an (older) F350 dually.
A friend of mine had a Radical Pro Sport that he had purchased from Bring A Trailer, but the organizations he was running with wanted him to only run it in the instructor run groups, so he was looking to let someone else have fun with it. His car was down in Houston. The seller of my new car said he’d also sell my friend’s Pro Sport. Thus a plan was born: Drive to Houston, pick up friend’s car, drive to LA, drop off both cars, load up new car and drive back to Austin. Planned travel time: Friday to (very, very early) Monday morning. I knew this was pushing it, but hey, why not?
Last Friday I took off from Austin and drove down to MSR Houston to pick up my friend’s Pro Sport. It took a bit to pack everything up (lots of spares) and then I headed out to Los Angeles. Unfortunately, the dually had a blowout in one of the inside rear tires as I was driving on I10, but luckily for me, this happened before I got past San Antonio.
I very carefully and slowly drove back to Austin (everywhere that could have fixed the tire was closed at this point), spent the night with Stacy and then took the truck over to Don Rucker Tire and Wheel first thing in the morning. We decided to replace all the tires on the rear of the truck and I headed back out to LA.
It was quite a trip.
- Times I ran out of gas: 1
(GPS said there was a gas station just down the road, but when I got there they were out of diesel)
- Times I almost ran out of gas: 2
(Again, iExit/Waze/Google said there was a gas station, but when I got there… nothing.)
- Times I got the truck and trailer stuck in mud: 1
(The Wilcox AZ Holiday Inn and Suites had a big dirt lot that they made me park in. While I slept, rain happened. Then this happened:
The tow truck barely had to help me get out, but help me out he did.)
- Miles driven: 2,890
- Miles driven on I10: @2,475
(Goodness gracious this is a boring drive, but when you are towing a 44′ trailer behind an F350, boring isn’t all horrible.)
- Dollar Amount of Gas Purchased: $814.48
(I kind of think there might be some pending charges as this doesn’t seem like all that much).
- Hotel stays: 2
- Truck Naps: 1 (about an hour or so)
- Hours spent over the whole trip: @88.5
(Between the stop in Austin to get the blowout fixed and the stops along the way, I didn’t get back in Austin until 4:30 am on Tuesday morning).
- Daniel McFadden’s seen: 1
(I was Daniel’s first ever instructor at an HPDE a long time ago. Daniel is now an instructor himself and lives out in LA. He came over to say hi when I picked up the new car in LA.)
- Number of Tuckers seen: 1
This is Preston’s actual car that he drove away from the courthouse after he won the case that cleared his name. Unfortunately, it was too late at that point and Tucker Automobile never happened.
At this point I’m just looking forward to the next event at CotA (or somewhere else) so I can drive the car on track.
If you see me there, please feel free to ask for a ride.