Welcome to another Lazy Sundays where we run through the best automotive videos from the past week. Well, that’s not totally the case this week. Our first video was actually released the week before, but it was so good there was no way I couldn’t share it with you. Usually when one thinks of iconic women in rallying, the first name that comes to mind is WRC and Audi legend Michele Mouton. However, there was a woman who was making waves in the rallying world almost a decade before Mouton. Her name is Rosemary Smith. Hailing from Ireland, Rosemary Smith started her rally career as a navigator, and after deciding that wasn’t enough for her, became a works driver for the Rootes Group, the organization that owned classic British marques such as Hillman, Sunbeam and Talbot, to name a few. From 1964 to 1970 as a Rootes driver, she amassed 9 class wins and 12 Coupe des Dames, finishing an impressive 21 out of 24 International rallies. Now at age 79, you would figure the fast paced life of motorsports would be but a fond memory. Yet here she is, driving a Formula 1 car for the first time and becoming the oldest person to drive a modern Formula 1 car ever. I dare say you won’t see a more inspirational video all week.
The next video features women in motorsports as well, this time young women from our current generation. This year Hoonigan teamed up with Fiat and held a competition to find a female driver in the US to add to their ranks. Out of the hundreds of applications that came in, they chose 6: Global Rally Cross driver Collette Davis, Pro Am drifter Rathyna Gomer, Time Attack driver Sally McNulty, off road and Motocross racer Sara Price and road racing drivers Suzy Valdivia and Michele Abbate. In addition to joining Hoonigan, the winner would also drive the Fiat 124 Abarth rally car up the Mount Washington Hillclimb. The fiirst half of the competition (which you can see here) tested their teamwork and off-track marketability, two vital qualities for a racing driver to have. The second half, shown below, put their driving skills to the test. I won’t spoil it by telling you who won. Simply watch and enjoy.
The next video is part of a new behind the scenes series from Motor Trend. In the Pit follows the four drivers on the new Lexus racing team 3GT racing, who campaign the Lexus RCF GT3 in the IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championships. This episode features Sage Karam, the youngest driver in the team, and his life on and off the track. It’s interesting how the team has managed to gel despite being so different in pesonalities. Sage is the wild one, Jack Hawksworth is more on the mature side, Robert Alon (whose episode you can watch here) is the quiet one, and Scott Pruett is the experienced leader type. What they do have in common though, is a fire to win, and the ability to turn on the focus like a light switch the second they get behind the wheel.
The next video follows the build process of Steve ‘Baggsy’ Biagioni’s wild turbo LSX swapped Nissan GTR drift car. You will likely have seen it in the BATTLEDRIFT 2 video that was released a couple of weeks ago. A LS swap is not something anyone would usually think to do with a R35 GTR; why go to the trouble of making it work when the VR38DETT is more than capable of making 1000+ hp? Not to mention that Daigo Saito and Masato Kawabata have both successfully campaigned VR38 powered R35s in Formula Drift and D1 Grand Prix respectively. Baggsy however wanted something unique, and it’s safe to say he achieved that. I’ll bet the LSX will probably be cheaper to replace in the event of engine failure as well. Purists may not like the end product but at the end of the day, ingenuity is what keeps car culture interesting. Also there’s no denying that the build quality of this project is top notch.
The final video is not for the purists either, but as it’s from Sweden, you shouldn’t expect anything else. If you ever watched or read a feature on Gatebil, you know that the Swedes don’t particularly care for automotive rules. Whatever engine and whatever chassis, as long as it can fit, they’ll make it work. Absolutely no category of purist is safe when it comes to a crazy Swedish build. For example, this video features a 2JZ powered Volvo 242, an absolutely violent, BMW inline-6 powered Ford Escort Mk 2 and a Volvo inline-4 powered R32 Skyline. The one that takes the cake for me though is the RWD converted, BMW inline-6 powered Honda CRX. How someone looked at a CRX and decided that was the best course of action is beyond me, but boy does it work. Just look at the launch of that thing.
That’s it for today. I hope you’ve enjoyed the videos we’ve chosen this week. Seen YouTube channels that you would like us to follow? Feel free to share the link in the comments. Also be on the lookout for some more content to come in the near future.