24 Hours of LeMons greats to get immortalized on Wall of BlameAre the Tunachuckers Wall of Blame material? – Click above for high-res image gallery
Rhymes with hall of fame, doesn’t it? And yes, the 24 Hours of LeMons Wall of Blame (WoB) is exactly that – a place to forever honor (forever being a relative term) those cars and teams that have made LeMons such a freaky good time. Here’s how the lazy fat cats good people at LeMons explains the inspiration for the WoB:“LeMons stuff never lasts: Cars explode or are hauled off by angry wives. Teams break up due to Sawz-All fights and/or prison terms. Brilliant themes become tired after the fifth time around for a Mr. T costume. But starting today, a rarified handful of LeMons over-underachievers will be immortalized forever through the LeMons Wall of Blame. Each inductee will be honored with a plaque made of Chinese lead, to be hung at LeMons HQ next to such other priceless artifacts as the original Noch Einer Scheiß-E30 stencil and Judge Jonny’s first powdered wig-an object equally redolent of history, stale tobacco smoke, and scalp smegma.”
Sure sounds like… something! Realizing just how sub-mental most LeMons fans are, the 24 Hours of LeMons HQ has gone ahead and selected six teams to be inducted into this year’s WoB class. Then, based off the results of the poll below (and a poll from some other site) an additional ten teams/cars/personalities will be selected as this year’s class members. Expect future WoB classes to consist of just ten teams total, but as LeMons has been around since 2006 and they just bothered thinking up the WoB before the start of their fifth racing season, there was lots of catching up to do.
One last little note before you jump and vote: Those of you planning to stuff the ballot box by voting early and often should know that this vote in no way resembles a democracy. Think of it as an autocracy that flashes a democratic face for the cameras. In the end, what Chief Perp Jay Lamm says, goes. See Rule 1.1 for clarification. Now jump.
Gallery: 24 Hours of LeMons WoB nominees
[Source: 24 Hours of LeMons]
First up, we’ve got the six cars/teams that already made it into the 24 Hours of LeMons Wall of Blame. In no meaningful order:
Eyesore Racing: Honored for multiple Organizer’s Choice awards, an overall win, fabulous outfits, and Totally Getting It.
Onset: The IOE, Organizer’s Choice, and Season Title winners who drove a caged glass-less Cavalier wagon LeMons car from California to Michigan for the Flat Rock race.
Rubber Biscuit Racing: Caprice-wielding warriors with a People’s Curse, several trophies, the 2009 Coppa di Bondo title, and fabulous illicit applejack.
Schumacher Taxi Service: These idiots have appeared at every event east of the Mississippi and featured the worst LeMons car ever seen: a primered Citation X11.
Size Matters: While an IoE winner, consistent strong finisher, and constant West Coast competitor, Size Matters is HOB worthy for making a ’60s Mopar not suck at all on the racetrack.
The Tunachuckers: An unbeatable WOB combination: terrible Volvo 122, Index of Effluency winner, and propensity to burst into flames.
And now, here’s the suckers you get to vote on:
1UP Mothercluckers: These LeMons veterans were once accused of being “Well-Connected Nissan Freaks” by the judges. For the following race, they removed the cheaty bits from their Sentra SE-R, beefed up their excellent Super Mario Brothers theme and updated their team name to “1UP–The Well-Connected Nissan Freaks.”
Black Iron Racing: Their impressively well-rounded LeMons resume includes an overall win, Organizer’s Choice, People’s Curse, and Most Heroic Fix. Their chewed-up-and-spat-out BMWs are noted for generating huge numbers of befuddled looks.
Cali Cajuns: The 2009 Season Champions bounced around the country scoring one top-ten finish after another, mostly behind the wheel of a frickin’ Saturn.
Chard Beef: Easily setting the LeMons record for number of total engine swaps, these I Got Screwed, Organizer’s Choice, and Index of Effluency winners had at one point gone through five motors in two races. In the middle of one swap, they stopped to help another team with their swap. All in a day’s work.
Ecurie Ecrappe: It’s hard enough to complete seven LeMons races in a single car – particularly when that car is possibly the worst Alfa Romeo Spider on the planet, that task is near-impossible. An Index of Effluency award, visits to the Concorso Italiano, appearances in Automobile, ADDX Tuning, Grassroots Motorsports, and Sports Car Market magazines, references in countless blogs, and even a cameo in the Wall Street Journal are among this team’s highlights.
Evil Genius Racing: Evil Genius’ well-known Ford-powered “V8olvo” has experienced major highs and lows, ranging from a last-lap overall win at Buttonwillow to being driven the wrong way on the track by Judge Phil at Thunderhill. They are also responsible for the 928 Shooting Brake and a mind-blowing project to be revealed during the 2010 season.
Faster Farms: A ’60s Plymouth and chicken suits was a good start, and when Faster Farms drove their windowless Belvedere to the track in 30-degree weather, flipped in Thunderhill’s turn one, then drove back home in a single weekend, they were elevated to legend status.
Krider Racing: After winning overall, Krider Racing reversed their thinking and went for – and ultimately scored – the highest number of penalty laps awarded in a LeMons race up to that point. Later, they converted a former LeMons car into a NASA contender, earning them a feature in Grassroots Motorsports. They also hold the distinction of the only team to roll their car while leading the race on the final lap.
Metrognome: One of the earliest examples of the Totally Nutzo LeMons engine swap, the Gnomes’ sportbike-powered Geo Metro won overall in its debut. Not content with that result, they converted the car from front-engine, front-drive to mid-engine, rear-drive using about 40 bucks worth of angle iron. What could possibly go wrong?
Pendejo Engineering: These guys decided that an Alfa Romeo Alfetta was too mainstream, so they upgraded to the first-ever LeMons V12 Jaguar. Deciding that the Jag wasn’t complicated enough, they found a salvage-titled ’95 Mercedes S600 supposedly owned by a shady Paraguayan diplomat, stuffed a cage in it and went racing. Even when Jay claimed the Benz for 500 bucks, they never stopped smiling.
PMS/BiPolar Express/Phony Express: If you don’t recognize them by name, you’ll recognize their work: A menopause-themed pink Mustang which was later converted into a steam locomotive using about 300 pounds of roof-mounted particleboard, followed by an early-Eighties Accord with a life-sized fiberglass horse and cowboy bolted to its top.
Property Devaluation Racing: While most Mustang teams go tough, these guys went sensitive with a My Little Pony theme. Appearing in Texas, Ohio, and Louisiana, Property Devaluation eventually added a V8-powered Fairmont wagon to their stable – which can typically be seen in the pits receiving the latest in a long line of engine swaps.
Saabs Gone Wild: One of the oldest, worst-performing, and most irritating LeMons teams, SGW has spawned numerous spinoff teams, a dedicated following on Saab internet forums and a widely-recognized connection between Saab 900s and tragic unreliability.
Shrimp Boots/Piranha Rentals: Despite being relative rookies on this list, these South Louisiana racers have left a serious impression on the LeMons, at one point feeding hundreds of their fellow Texas competitors with buckets of freshly boiled shrimp. Few pay much attention to their cars, but everyone knows where they’re parked in the paddock.
Team Blue Goose: One of the first teams to make a long-haul trip to a LeMons race, Blue Goose towed from Texas to Altamont and finished in the top ten. Since then, they have had an unparalleled string of mechanical failures, but they keep coming back for more.
Team Police Brutality: These DC-area cops and Organizer’s Choice winners were off to a good start when they figured a Lincoln Mark VIII would make a good road-race car, then they kicked things up to an even higher level by bringing a behemoth ’61 Cadillac sedan to Nelson Ledges. They eventually crashed it into a bridge abutment, but it was pretty awesome before that.
Team Porcubimmer: One of the first teams to solidly break away from E30 homogeny, the Porcubimmer’s foam-quilled 325 was also the first BMW to have the pricks on the outside.
Team Turbo Schnitzel: Complete with homemade lederhosen and a specially-hired paddock bratwurst cook, the Schnitzels also weren’t short on mechanical ingenuity. When their Merkur XR4Ti’s clutch took a dump, they made a new disc from sheetmetal and old brake pads. They scored an Organizer’s Choice for all of their efforts.
Team VIP/The Sharks: The Sharks have speed, style and an ’80s BMW with a junkyard turbocharger sticking a foot out of its hood. What’s not to like? Well nothing really, especially if you also like crash-prone driving that incorporates lots of sweet jumps. They swear they’re reformed, but do we really want them to be? (Probably yes.)
The Latch-Key Kids: In most competition venues, a Chia Pet-themed Plymouth Neon covered in Astroturf is not a speed threat. Not so in the LeMons. This Detroit-based team has racked up no fewer than five top-ten finishes, three Fastest Yank Tank honors, and one Least Horrible Mopar award. They have also towed the thing all across Creation, including one 50-hour marathon from Motown to California in between Christmas and New Year’s Eve in 2007.
Nasty. Brutish. Not Short Enough.
The crowd. The spectacle. The pall of blue smoke and roasted clutch discs. In all motorsport, no event captures the universal human need to whale on old crapcans and hoover down greasy barbecue like the 24 Hours of LeMons.
Each LeMons race is for cars purchased, fixed up, and track-prepped for a total of 500 dollars or less. But before reaching the grid, you’ll have to survive trials like the Personal-Injury-Lawyer Anti-Slalom, the Marxist-Valet Parking Challenge, and the Wide Open Throttle Rodthrowapalooza. Twelve hours into the race, the car voted People’s Choice is called in and awarded a cash prize; simultaneously, the car voted People’s Curse is called in and summarily destroyed. At the end of 24 hours, a gala awards ceremony plies the survivors with trophies, plaques, and four-figure purses in canvas bags full of nickels. What’s not to like?