Well, having seen this clip, we can safely say that now for Jamie of Officially Gassed that experience is driving a shotgun in a built Mark 1 Ford Escort designed for only one thing: drag racing. There were two things to help him with this: first, the fact that they drove the car on public roads – all legally – and second, the fact that the escort was being driven by a madman.
A very happy and funny madman, but a madman nonetheless. His name is Owen and he and his father are the reason this 1971 Ford Escort drag racing machine even exists. He’s also a third of the people behind the Motor Addicts YouTube channel, which we suspect is going to get a lot more subscribers after the stunts and faces Owen pulled in that clip.
What’s so special about this build? For one, it’s a drag racing machine specially made for Europe, which immediately makes it a rarity. We’re pushing things a little, but there’s no question that the drag racing scene there is nowhere near as big as it is in the US.
Second, it’s not actually a Ford Escort. It has a tubular frame with a Mk. 1 Ford Escort body on top. In fact, most of the bodywork is not original as the panels (doors, hood) have been replaced with fiberglass copies for obvious reasons. The result is a vehicle that weighs just 800 kg, despite a Ford 6.8-liter V8 and a C6 three-speed car with a transbrake. Oh, and a nitrous system at that.
How does it all translate into performance? Well, according to Owen, the thing can run the quarter mile in the low tens (10.2 seconds) without the aid of the nitro and in the high nines (9.50) with a spray. Not exactly earth-shaking, but pretty impressive nonetheless for a vehicle put together on the cheap side.
After going over the features of the car (or the lack of it, although there is a dumbbell welded in the trunk where they add weights for balance at takeoff) it was time to get it on the road. Despite its appearance and complete lack of security, the escort is still approved for road use. Owen and Jamie buckle up their thin plastic seats and bravely step outside.
When you watch the clip you feel like Jamie would still smile if something happened and the car crashed into the trees at 100 mph, happy to have experienced the ultimate thrill of his life. And you can totally understand that. They seem to have the time of their lives thinking that while this was completely new to one of them, the other had done it many times before, but that didn’t stop him from laughing like a madman. Oh, and we didn’t even mention the indoor burnout, which filled the cabin with more smog than you would need to turn all the salmon in the world into smoked salmon. Trust us; This is a fun clip that you won’t want to miss.