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Offline Paulstar


  • Joined: Jul 2008

  • Location: Sydney
Have you heard of?

http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/highway-hoons-in-secret-club/story-e6freon6-1225702921242

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juZMpW4X6VI" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juZMpW4X6VI</a>

This is the outcome of what might be the most successful troll on the internet, read below for how this video and article was 'researched'


Quote
The birth of the M1 300 Club
so it all started with a piss-take comment in this story.

http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/features/kmh-death-wish-on-m1/story-e6freoz6-1225700385341

something along the lines of "I don't know what you are all whinging about? 243 km/hr is nothing. We regularly hit speeds of 300 km/hr on the M1".

to my surprise, I received the following email a few hours after making the comment.

Originally Posted by Courier Mail
Hello, I got your email address from our online editor – I was interested in speaking to you about your claim that you’ve gone over 300kmh on the M1. Is that true ? Are you worried at all about being detected by police ? Do you think the speed limit on the M1 should be raised ? A lot of our bloggers today are calling for more fixed speed cameras on the motorway. Would this stop you ?

Thanks – I really am interested in your side of the story, and would certainly protect your identity.


I didn't know if this was a set up, but I seized the moment and sent the following reply

Originally Posted by Robbo from Ippy
Yes, I have done 300+ km/hr down the M1. I own a high powered Japanese import car that I have done extensive modifications to just so I could crack the magical 300 km/hr mark. It's sort of the holy grail amongst car enthusiasts, and proof of this is required to join to M1 300 club.

No, I'm not worried about being detected by police because myself and other members usually do a drive by of the piece of road we are going to race on before we actually race, and we always make sure we have some spotters in front and behind us. Besides that, do you really think police cars can keep up with us. My mate who is a copper said there is no way their cars could go that quick. We'd be in NSW before they even put down their donut and gave chase.

Yes, I think the speed limits should be raise. Other countries in the world have faster speed limits than we do, without higher fatality rates. The M1 is a quality piece of road. There is no reason why the speed limit should not be increased to 130-140km/hr.

Fixed speed cameras are a joke. Everyone knows where they are. Most Navigation Systems even have them marked these days, and my system beeps whenever I get near one. We sometimes race down in to NSW, and we always know to slow done just out of tweed heads cause there is a camera there. People who speed like we do make sure they know where the cameras are. I think mobile speed cameras (the vans) have some merit, but as I said, fixed cameras are a joke.

If they were really serious about catching people speeding, they should be going to more of an effort to hide the mobile speed cameras. It's a joke they need to make the van visible, display signs etc. A speed camera van stands out like dogs balls on the side of the highway. If they want to catch people, they need to change the rules so they can actually hide them, but the general public don't want that because then there is a chance they may get caught to/from work, yet they are happy to hang me out to dry because I speed at times when the highway is desserted. I wonder what % over the speed limit is socially acceptable?

I get the following reply:


Originally Posted by Courier Mail
THanks for getting back to me. So is the M1 300 club an official thing ? Do you actually get together regularly or is it more like the mile high club - where you have to take someone's word for it ? Is there a website or anything for members ? And do you have any ideas of how many people have cracked the 300 mark ? Sorry for all the questions, but I think it would make a great story!! Any chance of a pic of your car ?? I'm guessing probably not, given it would make it an automatic target for police

Sensing she is hanging on my every word, I draft the following response -

Originally Posted by Robbo from Ippy
Well I'm not sure if you'd call it official or not. It was started off by a couple of mates, and now it's grown to have a reasonable amount of members, but it's not that big cause as you'd probably understand, there isn't that many road legal cars that can do 300 km/hr.

In answer to your question as to exactly how many, I don't know the exact figure, but usually at meets we'll get around 10 people. A few on them are bikes, which is a little annoying as a car owner cause it's much easier to get a bike to do 300 km/hr than a car.

It's official in the respect that you need to prove to an existing member that your car is capable of the required speeds, but not official in the respect that it's a registered club recognised by any official bodies (such as CAMS, or the ASMF etc).

Once you are recognized as being able to do 300 km/hr, you are just inlcuded as part of the group and get emails or sms's of where we are going to meet for a few runs.

Haha, nah, no pic of my car, cause you're right. I'd be instant cop bait whenever i drove if the cops recognized my car and put me on the hoon register. I've already had to change my number plates once cause of this.

The thing you've got to understand is there really isn't a lot of place car owners like us can take our machines and use them to their full potential. There are a few events throught the year, but a lot of the time these are heavily policed, and the chances of getting pulled up either entering or leaving these events is quite high. While the penalties on the street are quite harsh, you've got a lot less chance of being pulled up on the M1 at 4am then you have coming out of queensland raceway at 4pm after an event. We all just got sick and tired of spening hundreds of dollars on entry fees, fuel, tyres etc to do something legally, only to get hassled by the police anyway. Better to take it underground

The following emails speak for themselves really


Originally Posted by Courier Mail
So it's a pretty exclusive club - probably one of the most exclusive in the state, and largely operated in secret - for obvious reasons. Have any of you ever lost your licence or been involved in a serious crash ? I am hoping to write a story about this - but I will certainly leave your name out of it. I really appreciate you trusting me enough to tell me what you have already. It's fascinating stuff. Do you ever take passengers ?

Originally Posted by Robbo from Ippy
No, surprisingly to some, I have never lost my licence. I have actually only ever accumulated 3 points in my 10 year driving career thus far, and that wasn't even a speeding offence. Just goes to show how ineffective speed cameras are if you actually pay attention. Some of the other guys have lost their licence, but more for a combination of driving offences, rather than actually getting caught racing on the M1.

No, to my knowledge none of us have had a serious accident either. I think this is due to the careful planning we put in to A) our cars, and B) the conditions in which we race in. As I said previously, we do a drive by of the area that we will be racing in first, an dhave spotters up front and behind, so we make sure we only race on relatively empty sections of road, which most are at 3-4am in the morning, especially on a weekday. We never race if the conditions are bad either (rain etc)

I personally think what we do is a lot safer than the person who tailgates or talks on their phone during peak hour. At the end of the day, if we have an accident, it's most likely only ourselves we are going to do harm to.

Some people occasionally take passengers, but I try to avoid it due to the point mentioned above. If anything was to ever go wrong, I don't want to have the death/injury of someone else on my consionce, especially considering they are likely to be a close friend.

Some of the guys have their car so stripped out that they couldn't even take passengers if they wanted to. In the speed game, weight is everything. If you can take some extra kilos out of your car, that may just be the difference between winning and losing a race, or making it to the magical 300 km/hr mark in the first place.

People seem to thik we are out to harm others and are menaces on the road, but we just want to have some fun, and the thrill off doing 300 km/hr is hard to beat.

Originally Posted by Courier Mail
So what's it like ? Is it scary ? The ultimate adrenalin rush ? Also are you able to say what sort of people are members of the M1 300 club ? Do they generally work in the motor industry ? Blue collar workers / Professionals ?
Is there a particular section of the M1 that's favoured ?

Originally Posted by Robbo from Ippy
It's a massive adrenalin rush. I think the fact that you could get caught adds to this rush. I haven't personally been involved in a police chase, but I know a couple of the boys did one night, and they reckon it was the biggest high they've ever had. bar none.

You'd be surprised. Most of the guys who have 300+ km/hr capable cars aren't in the motor industry at all. Most are profesionals. They need to be to be able to afford to modify their cars to the extent that they could reach those speeds.

In fact, if you passed us in the street, you probably wouldn't even pick that we were "hoons". Most people have this stereotypical view that hoons are your long haird, VB drinking, winnie blue smoking bogans. This may have been the case a generation ago, but this is no longer the case.

You'd probably also be surprised at the age of some of the guys in the group. Again, people imagine that people supposedly stupid enough to race on the highway would be young, but the average age would probably be close to 30. It's probably just that the young hoons are the ones stupid enough to get caught, and they are the ones who make your paper for all to read about. Those who are a little older, are a little more wise, and choose when the time is right to race. It's more organised than you might think. It's not just a mater of driving down the road on a Sunday arvo and you suddenly accelerate to 300 km/hr or race the young clown beside you just cause he is egging you on.

No specifc section, just anything that is long and fairly straight. Probably try and avoid areas close to civilisation though (close to brisbane, gold coast, service stations on the hway)

I'm not too concerned if you write a story on this, as I don't think I've given you any details that are too specific or would identify us to police, but if I have, I'd ask you to please keep them out of the press as the other guys in the club would be a little annoyed if they all got taken down cause of a few posts I made on the CM website and a few emails I sent on of their writers. Although some of the guys would probably think it's even more of a thrill if the police were out to get them haha

Anymore questions feel free to ask, but as above, I'm not going to give away anything too specific.

Originally Posted by Courier Mail
Just about done on the question front I think – but I am very grateful for your cooperation and I agree that there’s nothing you’ve told me that could identify you and your fellow members.



I’m not very mechanically minded but can you give me a bit of an idea of what sort of modifications are necessary to a car to help it reach 300km/h ?

When you said weight was so important, I imagined a group of men with jockey-like frames racing… are members generally fitness-conscious ?



Think that’s about it. I know my boss is going to want some sort of pic. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

Originally Posted by Robbo from Ippy
You need to make quite a few modifications to cars to make them capable of reaching the speeds we do. The majoirty of "off the showroom floor" cars won't get anywhere near 300 km/hr.

Might as well start from the ground up so one fo the basic things people do is to change their tyres to tyres that are rated for the intended speeds. Most normal "family car" type tyres aren't designed to do 300 km/hr. Sure they probably would, btu I wouldn't want to risk prolonged exposure to such speeds.

From there, tyres must be attached to lightweight wheels, because at high speed, std wheels would carry too much energy and make it a lot harder to stop. Behind the wheels are brakes which are upgraded significantly to larger models. These are required to dissipate the massive amount of heat generated when braking from 300km/h, especially if the lead cars radio back that there are police up ahead.

Suspension must be heavily modified, with typically heavier springs, and matched shock absorbers. These upgrades somewhat mitigate the risk of travelling at high speed (and not all members do these), however they alone wont get you to 300.

First you need the physical gearing to reach 300km/h road speed. By that I mean most cars would over-rev well before they reached such speeds. If you don't have the specific gear ratios, it's physically impossible to reach beyond a certain speed. A lot of vehicles "off the showroom floor" simply do not have a tall enough gearbox to reach 300km/h, and even if they do, in most cases the standard gears are not strong enough to cope with the power delivered from the upgraded engine!

Last but not least is an engine that is capable of delivering in most cases a minimum of 600HP, however most of the cars in the club are turbocharged and closer to the 800HP mark. Most of the guys opt for turbo charged model cars as it's much much easier and cheaper to make power.

Some of the guys have also modified their cars to included roll cages just in case anything should go wrong. Some guys have even gone to the expense of setting up communication equipment in their car so they can be in contact with other members of the group while they are racing. Some of the guys use wireless bluetooth headsets, but I'm only using CB radio at this point. Although I'm looking to upgrade to bluetooth soon as CB radio can be overhead by anyone.

Haha, no, when I mentioned weight, I wasn't talking about peoples weight. Sure if people could lose a few kg's that might make a bit of difference, but the big gains are in removing weight from the car itself. You could easily remove a hundred kg's or so from a car by removing the interior, spare wheel, tool kit - basically anything that isn't really neccessary. Every kg you remove, means you have to make less horsepower to acheive the same acceleration and top speed. It's a lot lot cheaper to remove weight from your car, then to try and extract more hp out of your engine.

As far as pics, I doubt anyone in the club is too keen to have a photo of their exact car picuted, but I've attached some pics of some cars that are very indicative of the cars our members drive. The majority of them are japanses imports such as skylines, supras and wrx's, but we do have a couple of australian cars such as XR6 Turbos.

Compared to a lot of other posers, we try and keep our cars looking relatively stock appearance wise. A lot of younger guys will have cars with wild styling such as big wings, crazy paint jobs etc, but we prefer to be a little more subtle. It seems to draw less attention from the cops. Given most of us are a little older, we seem to get hassled a little less driving cars of this appearance. If these pics aren't suitable, I may be able to come up with something better, but can't guareentee it.

Originally Posted by Courier Mail
Just got that email - thanks for the pics, really appreciate you going to that much trouble. I think the editor plans to run the story tomorrow. I hope you're happy with it - my chief of staff found it fascinating (just as I do). The chief police traffic coordinator for the region wasn't too thrilled.. as you can probably imagine. He reckons he'd never heard of the club but another cop I spoke to said police were probably aware of it.. but it was "too hard" to police.
The editor mentioned the possibility of us filming one of your meets. I said I didn't think you'd agree to that - but if there is any chance, please let us know. It'd be a huge drawcard for our website.

Anyway, thanks again for all your help and if there's anything else that comes up you think we might be interested in, please don't hesitate to get in touch.



Offline AshSimmonds

  • Geekitecht

  • Joined: Feb 2006

  • Drives: GF's shitbox :(
  • Location: Adelayed
  • Name: Humble Narrator
  • www: AshSimmonds.com
On mobile at the mo so can't be bothered checking - but pretty sure this is a story from a few years ago.



Offline Paulstar


  • Joined: Jul 2008

  • Location: Sydney
On mobile at the mo so can't be bothered checking - but pretty sure this is a story from a few years ago.

April 2009, first time I'm seeing/hearing about it though  :scratchchin:



Offline My Rotarys


  • Joined: Sep 2008

  • Drives: 1000
  • Location: Brisbane
Its been happening for at least 10 years...  Also rolling blockades 50+ cars in second gear no body can go thru everything in front is clear  ;)



Offline anotherforumuser

  • AE's voice of reason
  • Choose to take risks or settle for ordinary.

  • Joined: Sep 2010

  • Drives: A red car.
  • Location: Downunder
This always makes me larf...

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUCUIvN3YSI" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUCUIvN3YSI</a>



Offline Wattens

  • Free Mustache Rides
  • The only wrong decision is Regret

  • Joined: Jan 2010

  • Drives: Cars
  • Location: Earth
  • Name: Knob Head
Its been happening for at least 10 years...  Also rolling blockades 50+ cars in second gear no body can go thru everything in front is clear  ;)

 :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :D :D
You can say I'm wrong, but my garage doesn't agree with that statement!!!



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