Category: Cars/Racing

Remembering 8-Ball

Remembering 8-Ball

I’m in the process of merging the rest of my old site design into the wordpress format.  I have a couple of pages left to move over but modifying the 8-Ball page reminded me of the fun I used to have driving that beast.  I realized that many of you have watched 8-Ball get faster over the years but may not know what ultimately happened to her.

In June of 2009, I sold the 2nd fastest SSEi on the planet to a college kid. In hindsight, probably not the safest thing to do. I needed the money, however, and everything was great for a while. Then, in March of 2010, I got the call. Turns out he wrapped it around a telephone pole when a Mercedes performed a PIT maneuver on him trying to avoid a parked car that was in its lane.

I’m told no racing was going on but you can draw your own conclusions. 8-Ball was a total loss and gave up her life to protect the driver. Every now and then I think of her and miss her. I’ll be adding some photo albums soon and 8-Ball will live on, frozen in time forever on the internet and in our hearts.

I’m also updating some of the old links and want to give a shout out to my old friends at

Nokian Hakkapeliitta R Winter Tyres

Nokian Hakkapeliitta R Winter Tyres

Nokian Hakkapeliitta R

I bought my 2009 Pontiac G8 GT last year in December with summer only tires. I made it through the rest of our Ohio winter with only a few days of really tense driving conditions. I grew up driving rear wheel cars but over the past 10 years or so I had gotten used to driving a FWD car.

The summer tires made it far to easy to slide corners in even just a bit of cold, wet light snow conditions but my experience with RWD cars and the G8’s awesome traction control system made it passable for the rest of the season.

During the spring, summer, fall and even up to a few weeks ago I’ve had little problems with the summer only tires. Having been through the previous partial winter I knew how bad the Potenzas could be and had been planning on getting snow tires this winter but Ohio hadn’t been hit with much snow and there was Christmas to pay for so I put them off.

Two weeks ago on my way home from Dayton, about 1.5 hours away with my family in the car we got smacked with an impromptu high wind snow storm that only resulted in about 1.5 inches of snow but because of the winds and open location along with the traffic on I-70 it made the road conditions go south in a hurry. While very tense I was able to get the G8 back to Columbus where the road conditions were even worse. No plowing, no sand, no salt, etc… Even with only a small amount of snow and driving carefully (5-10-15 mph at times) the car’s tendency to slide at lights, not take corners because the front end would go straight, no traction from a stop, slide down sloped roads, etc… made me hate the very car I had loved for almost a year.

Knowing we were getting a much bigger storm coming this week I spent the bucks and put a set of Nokian Hakkapeliitta R’s on my 19″ rims. All I can say is Wow! The excitement I had driving my G8 for the first time hit me all over again even in 5 inches of snow and slush and crap on the roads. Braking time is significantly less. Corners are easy. Uphill, downhill, no problem. I’m not worried about making it up my driveway and in conjunction with the traction control system the G8 is a complete joy to drive now in the snow and all because of a tire change.

While you can drive a G8 in the winter with summer tires (and many similar owners have done it) why would you want to? The G8 comes alive in the snow with a good set of winter tires. My confidence is once again very high now in my car and I can love it again like the day I bought it.

My SSEi in a Horrifically Destructive Accident

Ok, so it COULD have been really bad but thanks to my defensive driving I managed to make it through relatively unscathed. Unfortunately 8Ball took a pretty good hit.

I was on my way home from INTENSE and had just exited I-270 which runs around Columbus. Easing on to Rt-3 which is the main road through the town I live in I went under the 270 underpass going about 40 in a 45 and proceeded through a GREEN light intersection. Just as I entered the intersection I caught a large object coming from my left side at a good speed and instinctively jerked the car right and slammed the breaks.

Apparantly a young female had decided to make an illegal u-turn from the south bound lane into the north bound lane and had I not moved to the right and slowed down she would have t-boned me in the driver side. As it was I managed to get over enough so that just her passenger side front corner clipped my driver side and she was able to finish her turn and straighten out.

The lady was driving an 08 Honda Civic and had just moved to the area from out of state. Neither of us were injured and we moved off the busy road and called the police after exchanging information. She was cited for the illegal u-turn and now I get to go through the fun of getting my car fixed.

This may just be the push I needed to go ahead and get my G8 or maybe I’ll just call Ed and get a door and pocket the insurance cash. Have to wait and see what happens in the next few days.

Here are the pics:


My Bonneville 8-Ball on YouTube!

Found this video of my car on YouTube today.

This is a video I put together a year or so ago to show the advantage of the INTENSE Limited Slip Differential for the 4T65E-HD Transaxle. Apparantly someone liked it enough to put it up on YouTube.

This was a pretty crazy video shoot. There was so much smoke by the time we were done that it looked like the building was engulfed in white smoke and the neighboors almost called the fire department. One of our part time employees coming into work said they could see the smoke cloud from a mile away.

After we were done and we moved the car out of its burnout spot the pile of rubber that had accumulated around the tires was still smoldering. In fact to this day there are still two rubber patches in the concrete that can’t be cleaned off. We joked for a week afterwards that the car still had that new burnout smell.