Ford vs. Ferrari March 4th, 2020
I’m looking forward to seeing the movie “Ford vs. Ferrari”. The Ford
GT40 car has some memories for me.
Back in Lincoln, Nebraska when I was 13 or so and delivering
newspapers every day at dawn on my bicycle, I had enough money
to buy a slot car racer.
I chose the Ford GT40. Not sure why. It was white and I added the
blue racing stripe decals and etc. logos. I also put in the sidewinder
electric motor on the back axel. It was innovative to have the motor
on the side. It gave the car’s wheels more torque.
But the drive shaft from the electric motor attached to the rear drive
wheel with a set screw. As a mechanic, I’ve always hated set screws.
They are a weak way to use friction to attach anything. Basically you
just screw down a screw onto the smooth surface of the axel and
hope for the best.
I’d take my Ford GT40 down to the local slot car racing track in
1965 Lincoln, Nebraska. The track was on “P” Street just east of the
My car was fast and I had a good electric trigger controller for the
throttle. Older men were there racing their slot cars, which I found
The track was big and highly banked in the turns. But my car would
beat these old guys’ cars many times. I remember this one old guy
(hell, he was probably 40 at most) who had his fancy slot car racer
with two electric motors on it. But he didn’t know how to navigate
the track and I’d beat him.
He didn’t like it.
But that damned set screw on my Ford GT40 kept coming lose and
I’d lose a tire on the turns sometimes.
One time I lost a tire and the old fart’s fancy double engined car hit
my tire on the track. Oh, he was pissed!
He started swearing a blue streak and said, “You gotta say, ‘Tire on
the track!’ Goddamn it!”
So, I gathered up my car and tire. Put my Ford GT40 back in its box,
went home, and threw it all away.
I never went back.