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2-Corvette Z06 Museum Delivery Option

Stretching legs

Corvette Museum w/ SNOW!

Entrance to Museum

Stretching my legs

Filling up with go-juice

As I head south I pass the Waffle House and I see Steve’s truck parked in the motel parking lot next to it…guess he found Elvis. I find I-24 to Atlanta and drive to sundown where I get some rest at the AllTheWay Inn. Its 997 miles to Miami and Interstate all the way. I had the foresight to call Mike Valentine at Valentine Research and ask him to put together one of his best. Mike is the worlds foremost authority on radar detection and his radar detector the Valentine 1, is the best. I have never got a ticket using one.


Its getting late in the eve of my second day of driving as I pull into a gas station along side I-75 just south of the Florida border. The Z06 has just ticked over 500 miles and I am thinking I need to let those 385 ponies loose. I look over at the far pumps and I have 2 Porsche’s filling up. A Boxster and a 911 Carrera. The two guys see me and wander over asking me about my ‘vette. They tell me they are investment bankers from Atlanta heading down to an Alumni fraternity party in Tampa. From the looks of these two, I am sure they are going to have a gay ole time. Boxster boy is telling me how fast the other Porsche is and I listen as if I am impressed. They leave telling me they hope to see me out on the highway…bet on it banana breath!


I fill up my tank and head south. I bank right and hit the I-95 on ramp like Jean Claude Killy chasing Suze ChapStick down the slopes in Aspen. I turn my Valentine One to max bogie as I head down that highway and crank up Thrugood’s Bad To The Bone CD. It is not long and I come across the two-bobsee twins in their German machines. Boxster boy is following as I pull up beside the 911.


We are at 75 mph, I see the 911’s nose dip slightly and I know he is down shifting, I have 6 forward gears residing in a Tremec Mk 12 racing transmission, I see his nose dip again and I know he is fixing to hammer it. I am grabbing for gears faster than a monkey reaching for a banana. I see the nose head up and he has the drop on me as I catch the top of second gear heading for 6500 rpm, he has me by a car length or so but its German Vs. Chev iron or I guess aluminum in this case. Third gear gets here in a hurry, then it fourth, I left him behind in the top of third, but he is hanging on like a trapeze artist without a net.


Telephone poles are begining to look like a picket fence and the dashed line in the highway looks like a solid line when I look ahead and see a long sweeper curve up ahead.  We run out of straight away and head into the curve.  Z06 will pull 1G and I know he can, but does he have the kahunas to hang in there?


I have the inside lane heading into the sweeper and I am looking at him in my right hand side mirror. We are running about 135mph, I have been seeing him in that mirror since we hit triple numbers. As we go into the apex of the curve I see his nose-dive and I know he did not have the guts to stay the course, what do you expect from a jellyfish. I slow and those two have faded faster than memories of Kato Kaelin after the OJ trial.  I see a sign for the Empty Arms Inn and I exit to spend the night.


I’ll make Miami by 4 this afternoon and I just got my belly full of lunch at the Last Pancake south of Gainesville. I’m at an easy cruise about 78mph when a brand new Camaro Z-28 pulls up. We play but it never gets past 85 or so, the windows are tinted but I can make out the profile of a girl, a girl that goes to FSU if the decals mean anything. Most likely, some college girls heading back to school on a Sunday afternoon. They are running along beside me when suddenly I hear that fateful sound of a tire gone bad. The Z-28 nose-dives as they pull to the right and I speed up and pull over about 50 yards ahead of them. I back up till I’m at the car and I get out.


The window is down and sure ‘nuff it’s a coed, she smiles and asks for help as she is stepping out. She has on a miniskirt and the last time I saw something that short it was Yasar Arafat’s Happy Hanukah gift list. About this time, I see another face getting out of the car as my little coed coo’s, “this is my older sister, we have been visiting mom and dad in Tallahassee and are on our way back to Miami”. She comes walking around the car and its big hair, big eyes and big smile and I am thinking I better bend over and look at this tire before she asks me if I am glad to see her or do I always carry a tire jack in my pocket. I’m thinking these gals got their Daddy’s money, their mamma’s good looks and have made me smile like a stack of comic books. I change out the tire while “older sister” helps me, she is divorced, two kids and thinks her favorite color is yellow. We make plans to get together in Miami on some moonlit nite and I head on south with them in tow.

 

Stats:

Avg. gas mileage, 23.2

Overall average speed, 76

Best gas mileage, 24.9 @ 80 mpg from Nashville to Atlanta

Gas mileage from Gainesville to Opa Locka FL@ 90 mph avg, 23.1 mpg

The Z06 Corvette last made by Chev in 1963, 199 produced, built for racing.


Impressions: The Z06 has more pickup than a busload of hookers on payday Friday nite. The torque curve is flatter than my last girlfriend without her wonder bra, which gives one the ability to drive it anywhere under any conditions, unlike my ’69 427/435hp, which could only take off on dry pavement. Albeit it had pickup, like the straps on Dolly Pardon’s bra it was always stressed and larger than life. Usually an all or none approach. The Z06 fully reflects 48 years of engineering and one can somehow feel that Zora himself looks down upon each one and smiles. Not sure what the “Bowtie Boys” have in store down the road, but the Z06 is gonna be one hellava act to follow!


Epilog:

We went 34 years in our family that Dad, sister, or I drove a Corvette. It was a very emotional time for me while picking up the Corvette in Bowling Green. Judy, my sister, and I spent many years in the Corvette Club of Texas together and Lord knows she loved her Corvettes. She sold her last ‘vette shortly before she passed away from cancer a few years ago and it was always her desire to visit the factory and museum.

 

Judy, this 2001 Z06 Corvette is for you!

In memory, your loving brother.


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