We’ve officially been called out by Australia on account of our “sloppy” burnout form, and since America isn’t one to back down from a challenge, I figured I’d address this so we can figure out how to take ’em down!
JUST KIDDING! We love our Australian neighbors; even if their toilets flush the wrong way (they really don’t), they burnout funny, and they like to drive from the passenger seat – they are some of the finest people whom I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. (Add Australia to your bucket list if you haven’t already.)
What Is a “Skid Chuck?”
I do, however, feel that a particular Australian pastime needs to be dissected for a moment, partly because I’m intrigued – and partly because I’m perplexed! It’s called “chucking a skid,” and it’s exactly what it sounds like; massive burnouts – Australian style! See more about this tomfoolery on the SummerNats website.
Skid-chucking is exactly what it sounds like. But the difference between American burnouts, and Australian burnouts…is just about everything.
As you can see from the video, they take this pretty seriously. Notwithstanding all the literal puns we’re floating in right now, the art of the burnout has been refined and filtered into a potent concentration of massive horsepower – with absolutely no way to hook it all up!
Maximum Power – Minimum Grip
I actually find this extremely interesting! We’ll get to all the things that don’t make sense with this in a moment – but let’s take a second to appreciate the beauty of what we’re looking at here; it’s the celebration of horsepower; in a format that environmentalists would criminalize; engineered to the absolute maximum of technology’s visible horizon!
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Everything is centered around blowing out the most smoke, with the most noise, in a rodeo-like jaunt, with a wildly crappy car that has more motor than it could ever make use of! This essentially means, they’re putting massive engines inside whatever’s laying around, and then blowing maximum torque down the driveline through every single gear!
Tires blow out! Rims sizzle against the asphalt, blowing sparks everywhere! Fires erupt (in places they shouldn’t be erupting)! It’s pretty intense. If there was a maximum threshold you could take a burnout – they found it, and exceeded it!
It’s all about spinning those rear tires as hard and fast as they will spin! At a certain point, however, one can’t help but notice that excess power quickly becomes superficial. Whether you have 400hp – or 1,400hp – it’s not doing very much good when it can’t hook up to the ground below.
As I sit here and watch the screaming motors, greedily suck down gallons of atmosphere to feed the fire-breathing dragon, it dawns on me that we’re not only celebrating horsepower, we’re doing it in a way that basically reduces the mechanical efficiency of the engine to exactly zero!
Are We Going To Step Up?
Where most motorsports will work to maximize the performance they can extract from a particular powertrain, skid chucking takes their overflowing reservoirs of performance and pours them lackadaisically onto the smoldering asphalt. It’s hard to qualify performance on a set of variables like “the amount of smoke that pours from the wheel wells,” but whatever they have going on over there is building momentum, and they’re calling us out!
You can find plenty of their cute videos online. They do playful things, like compare our biggest viral internet failures to their top-level competition – fair enough; we had some of those coming. But what do we respond to this with? It’s clearly an institution over there. Do we step into their ring?
Can we hang? I’m pretty sure we could. But SHOULD we ante up? They don’t like static brake stands, and slow, controlled burnouts; we can dig it. But we don’t like cars that can’t perform under any other condition than willy-nilly!
Are these willy-nilly cars, or can they hold their own with a soft set of Hoosiers and a stopwatch? It would be very interesting to see them swap the burners out with some drag radials; then we could shoot em out in some straight-line action to see what those little beaters can really do!