PRETTY FLY FOR A JAG GUY
ASH WESTERMAN, YOU’RE not alone in vehicular lift-off mishaps. In the late-’80s, a colleague and I retrieved a stolen V12 XJ-S Jag from country Queensland for an insurance company. Of course, I commandeered the Jag while my mate followed in our XF Falcon. On a deserted stretch of road, I coaxed the tired Jag to an indicated 225km/h. Laughing at the Falc receding in the mirrors, I totally missed the ‘DIP AHEAD’ sign. The Jag got so much air from the hit, the resulting landing almost ejected me, James Bond-style, through the sunroof. But I hit the dip flat and the Jag seemed fine so we pressed on. But approaching Brisbane it got steadily louder until, driving through the CBD, it sounded like the unholy spawn of a speedway bike and monster truck. Arriving at the depot, I peered underneath the Jag and saw… nothing. The entire exhaust system from manifolds back was gone. Turns out it basically exploded on impact and progressively shed itself all the way back; my mate thinking it so hilarious, why spoil the show by telling me? But, unlike your ending, we parked the car, ran away, and nothing more was ever heard.
Michael, we’re going to assume you’ve given us a false name or changed some details here to shield yourself from admitting to launching a V12 at more than 200km/h. Bravo to you, though, for not becoming an impression of The Human Torch if nothing else!