One of the greatest car movies ever filmed was 1971’s Vanishing Point. The basic plot of the movie is simple. Kowalski is a car delivery driver, who leads police on a chase across four states. He’s made a bet that he can deliver the supercharged 1970 Dodge Challenger from Denver to San Francisco in 15 hours (while high on speed). Reminiscent of today’s concept of ‘going viral’, the police chase to capture Kowalski attracts national attention. Initially, local DJ Supersoul reports on Kowalski’s progress across the US Southwest, and later in the movie, national TV and media arrive on scene. Through flashbacks, it is revealed that Kowalski is a former police officer, a motorcycle speedway rider and a stock car racer, who has faced tragedy throughout his life. It is only speed that gives the anti-hero a sense of release from a world he seems to see as largely meaningless.
While the film is a car chase flick, social issues of the late 60s and early 70s are explored throughout Kowalski’s journey. Fringe religious cults, homophobia, police brutality, racism, and oppression are explored…many of the problems which continue to plague society today, 50 years later.
“…the last American hero, to whom speed means freedom of the soul…”
Any motoring enthusiast has at some point wanted to do what Kowalski did. Break all the rules of society that keep everyone caged up with traffic laws and speed limits. Just drive like it’s the last day on earth. Who wouldn’t want to live out that ultimate speed freak fantasy of speeding down the highway with nothing to worry about except the next gas station.
When restrictions are finally lifted, Daniel Demaras and Chris Demaras are looking forward to returning to Toronto Motorsports Park at Cayuga for more laps around the road course. This year, racing friends from New Speed Motorsports will be joining them to make the return to the track even more fun!
This video made the rounds on the local news this week, as a would be thief, trying to steal packages off a porch in a suburb of Toronto, managed to get high-centered on a snowbank. This is the most Canadian ending to a crime.
The cartoon below (translation; ‘The same – just the opposite’) compared how Scandinavian’s views of motoring changed between 1903 and 1928. Try driving north on Woodbine Ave in Toronto, stuck behind a TTC bus, unable to pass because bike lanes have replaced half the road, made me think of how Toronto’s attitude towards the car has changed in the 100 years since.
The Demaras family is getting ready to pop some corks at midnight to celebrate the new year. Martini & Rossi Asti was really the only choice for our family. Don’t let anyone ever tell you that motorsports sponsorship doesn’t increase sales!
UK retail giant Argos re-imagined Santa’s sleigh with this advertisement. The sleighs look more like spaceships, and strangely, they’re piloted by elves rather than Santa himself. In a nod to the original, the tail number on the aircraft reads “RUDOLPH ONE”.
The quick 1 minute commercial shows a heavily automated and mechanized workshop, supposedly owned by Santa Inc. An elf on the assembly line realizes a toy destined for little Johnny has fallen out of the cargo hold of ‘Rudolph 4’ and won’t make it to the youngster on Christmas. In full Die Hard mode, the elf chases the rocket powered sled down the runway as it prepares for take-off.