Rally Racing is what keeps me sane, wrenching on cars is how I got started in racing, so what kind of rally mechanic would I be without a bottomless money pit project racer?
Why a GTI?
After wrecking my last project car, I thought long and hard about what kind of solid race platform could be had for relatively cheap, maintained cheap, and stand up to the rigors of a fair dose of opposite lock. I looked to the US rally scene (www.rally-america.com) for advice. The Group 2 (two-wheel-drive cars) scene was littered with little old VW’s, so I decided to shoot for a GTI.
This car served as my only vehicle for upwards of two years, which is harsh with no interior, marginal heat, fiberglass race seats and 5-point harnesses. Most couldn’t deal with driving the GTI every day, but then again, I wasn’t trying to impress anyone. I did however become just a little bit Internet famous!
I compete in as many ameteur SCCA RallyCross events as possible. These events are a closed course in an open field, racing around cones against the clock. My intent is to build the car to race professionally after I graduate, but for now RallyCross will do!
Here is some footage of a recent race in Pittsburgh, IL:
I have built/swapped many engines and transmissions into this car as a result of my constant persuit of speed and change. Notabally, a friend and I built a complete replica of a rare supercharged engine only available in an even more rare car in Europe. Very few people in the US have built a 16vG60 (as the VW community refers to it), the engine is pictured below.