Car Club

CATEGOLY: Funny/School Days

When I enrolled in Tokyo Technical High School, I chose to join the car club. I wasn't interested in cars and still I am not, but I thought since my school has lots of cool machines, I should learn how to use them.

As you can see from the picture we made an economic car, which had the 50cc Honda motorcycle engine, and wheels for wheel chairs. Not the one on the picture but the other car was designed by me, and the flame was welded by me. We put a customized Honda engine. How was it customized? We made a hole in the cylinder head and put one more plug in. We changed some of the body flame from iron to aluminum. We had camps to test our cars. All the effort made the car mileage better and better every race.

The most memorial thing was when we raced at Suzuka International circuit where Formula One drivers compete. This picture was when we were preparing for the practice run at Suzuka.

Formula One is the most popular motor sports in Japan and being in Suzuka circuit was so exiting thing for high school kids especially the ones who likes racing and cars.

So somebody suggested we should walk along the circuit. The circuit was about 5.9 km (3.6 miles) and sure there was enough time to walk around. So we decided to walk before a meeting for competitors. As we estimated, we had enough time to go back before the meeting and enjoyed walking until when we walked about 4 / 5 of distance and found we were at a dead end. We had only 30 minutes to go back the way we walked. The happy walking became a 3-mile survival running with school uniform and safety shoes, which had a metal plate in bottom. The ones could not make the distance were left behind and the ones who was not fast enough could not attend the meeting. There were only 3 survivors who attended the meeting. I was one of them, hahaha. By the time the meeting was over, everybody came back except one. Before we went back to the hotel, we all had to agree this 3-mile survival running had to be kept secret from the teachers. We probably smelled, our feet hurt, but at least 3 of us attended the meeting from the beginning, so there was nothing to worry about. When we went back our hotel, we went to dining room to eat. There were our teachers and the one who was missing were already eating. He was very guilty looking. We immediately realized we were in trouble. The truth that was supposed to be kept secret was already revealed, and the teachers gave us a long sermon.

A good story is our car couldn't finish the race, 8 laps. Why it is a good story? Well, the engine was over heated at the first corner of 8th lap. After the race was over, the official allowed to us to go inside the circuit to get our car, so I have walked the circuit, where the world top drivers compete every year, where the dramas are born, and on top of that, I have walked where the NASCAR' drivers, Rusty Wallace, Jeff Gordon and of course Dale Earnhardt had raced (although I didn't know NASCAR drivers at that time). I was happy. I walked, I ran, I laid down, I kissed asphalt, and I rolled over and over.