by Gus Breiland
I was 7 or 8 years old and it was Christmas. My brother and I, sleepy and tired walked down the stairs to the living room wondering what Santa had left. To our amazement there was a slot car track set up and ready to go. I was elated; ecstatic “I get the red car!” I hear my brother exclaim.
“Red car?” I think to myself. “What red car?” I really hadn’t even seen the cars and he is calling dibs? Being 5 years younger, I immediately shout “No, I do!” Being 5 years younger my destiny had also been sealed. I was getting the green car. “Stupid green car” I say. From elation to disappointment it 3.5 seconds. Not a bad Christmas at all. Usually we ruined it immediately, at least this year I would get 3.5 seconds of joy.
Fast forward to 2005. Motorcycles are my joy as they are for my brother. Hell, I had to get this writing job just so once in a blue moon, when editor Wanchena has been drinking enough to forget that I was past my deadline yet again, I get a new bike to ride and show off to my “Bro”. But that doesn’t even compare to the MotoGP slot motorcycle set I got from Scalextric. This thing is so cool. Palm sized bikes, a nice wide track and speed. You can even annoy your pets with it!
Imagine having a party at your place and saying “Anyone want to race motorcycles?” Of course your friends are going to look at you and bitch about having to play that stupid video game again. The one where you have mastered every track and revel in the fact that you just lapped them a 4th time in the 5 lap race.
Now imagine coming out with your slot car set. 2 bikes, 2 paddles and 25 feet of track to burn around. Each kit is a little different. Our Biaggi Valintino is the medium length track containing over 25 feet of track and occupying a 10.5 x 7 foot section of floor. You will damn near be able to bottle the envy surrounding you in the room. You can make any number of track configurations based on Scalextrics recommendations or your own imagination. The throttle is a paddle with a trigger that acts as the accelerator. The kits include runoff guards and banking shims to increase the speed of the track. We were able to whip around the corners using books and other non-essential space claimers on our coffee table to get the angle of the track to light speed.
We had a blast running Max vs Valintino and even picked up a Capirossi to see how he performed. The bikes run on a pin guided in a slot on the track, thus the name “slot car”. They also have an outrigger to keep the bike from tipping over and it even comes with a track stand and they run on real rubber. Each bike has a rider and is painted and decaled up like the real thing.
You can find Scalextric online at www.Scalextric-usa.com. There you will find the MotoGP line along with many other slot car sets. You will also find a director of local dealers. Our set is the C5001T – Biaggi Valintino which retails for $199.95. Solo bikes are available for $47.95 with most MotoGP bikes and even a few WSB racers.