Mr Q 25th Mar 2020

When we turned 17/18 we were handed a golden ticket to freedom – a driver’s license. With it we could do what we want, go where we want and most importantly – impress girls with our mad-fly handbrake turn skills.

Unfortunately this freedom is proving to be a little bit down on its luck and now we are all basically under house-arrest. A day or two will be great, a nice break from the grind, some extra time with the family – 21 days and we start losing the plot slightly. Boredom starts to make risking prison for a drive around town look like a really attractive option.

So – given that petrol-heads are predominantly big children with big toys, I decided to compile Mr Q’s ultimate survival guide for the Petrol-Head in Lock-Down.

1. Go for a Drive:

Well no, you can’t get in your car and go for a drive, regardless of how much sanitiser you bathe yourself in. Fortunately, computer games and driving simulators have come a very long way since the square blocks moving around on a rolling road from the 80’s. Modern driving sims like Assetto Corsa and Project Cars 2 are realistic enough to be used as training tools for serious drivers! Get yourself a nice PC set-up with a steering wheel and some pedals and treat yourself to some laps around the Green Hell, Spa or Silverstone in a variety of sports cars, super cars and race cars.

My Sim setup uses 3 monitors to give a much better field of view and greater sense of speed.

2. Youtube Binge:

If you are anything like me, you will have seen every Top Gear re-run about 4 million times by now – same for the Grand Tour, Fifth Gear and even Wheeler Dealers. So the prospect of watching all of these is probably not all too exciting, even though you’ll probably end up doing so anyways! Fear not though, because Youtube has MOUNTAINS of very high quality automotive content for you to discover, catch up on and binge for hours on end! Some channels worth checking out are: Doug DeMuro, Hoovie’s Garage, Vin Wiki, Tavarish, Wrench Every Day, Carfection, Bad Obsession Motorsport, Car Throttle, Drive Tribe and Harry’s Garage. There are LOADS more out there and watching is completely free so check them out!

Tyler Hoover, of Hoovie’s Garage, has a fleet of around 20 “hoopties” – His channel features his incredible collection of cars – usually he buys the cheapest “whatever” in the USA.

3. Wax on – Wax off:

Washing my car is nothing new to me – I don’t do car-washes at all! So put my theory to the test whilst you are stuck at home anyways; I firmly believe that no-one will clean your car as well as you would do it yourself, because the more time you spend on it, the better it will be. Even the best detailing shops who do outstanding work, will not be willing to spend all the time in the world cleaning and polishing every single nook and cranny of your ride. In 3 weeks time you can impress everyone on the next breakfast run with a car that looks better than new!

When last did you clean your vents?

4. DIY:

Much to your wife’s dismay, I am not talking about finally putting up those picture frames or mounting that shelf she’s been asking about for the last 6 months – I’m talking about going down to your garage and swinging some spanners under the hood of your car. Do an oil change, check your suspension and brakes or finally put those go-faster stripes on it… and then promptly remove them when you see that you’ll look like an spanner. If you have a project car that’s been in your garage collecting dust since 2012 (errr…guilty), now might be a good time to get on with it.

My Work In Progress…

5. Dig up your old toys:

As petrol heads I’m pretty sure all of you have that box of model cars, Scalextric, Matchbox cars and Lego that’s been kicking around in the back of an attic or storage space for years now. Go dig those things out! They were loads of fun when you were 6, and they are still loads of fun now, plus they bring back endless memories of a childhood spent on your knees pushing cars around your pretend town. Personally I have about thirty 1:18 scale models and a little under 500 Matchbox cars – and when boredom really kicks in I’m going to be detailing them all with full valets!

If your Childhood didn’t include one of these, you should ask your parents for a refund!

6. Meme it up!

Of course if everything else fails, sit somewhere quiet, take out your phone or tablet, grab some popcorn and enjoy! The last couple of weeks has seen some of the best meme’s and videos being uploaded about how people are coping with lockdowns in other countries. Literally hours of entertainment right there!

SO! That’s it. Mr Q out… See you all in 3 weeks.

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