Lemons Quick Start

Davis, CA, where I live, has a club called “Davis Motorsports Club” or sometimes “UC Davis Motorsports Club”. Some of the members are current or former students at UCD, but some are locals with no affiliation with the University. They recently started a GoFundMe to help fund their 24 Hours of Lemons team with the stated goal of raising $10,000.


This got me thinking about what advice I would give to a new Lemons team. There are some very successful teams who will give you their formula for success. More importantly, there are losers who can identify all the specific ways they keep failing. Personally, I’ve done Lemons for 10 years, and I’ve accumulated a few ideas myself. Here’s what I would tell a new team: you know all those pearls of wisdom you’re getting? Fuck ’em. Do it your way.

The realities of racing are these:

  • It’s more expensive than you estimate
  • It’s more dangerous than you think
  • It’s more time-consuming than you expect
  • It’s more frustrating than fun
  • It creates lifeling memories

I think the whole point of racing as a hobby is to create memories. You’ll make more memories doing dumb shit than following the sage advice of veterans. So let the fuckery begin.

Safety First

OK, so I will give some advice on safety, because it’s the most important thing.

  • Don’t try to hunt for bargains, but rather hunt for quality
  • It’s hot in CA, and safety equipment includes cold shirts (DIY the box, not the shirts)
  • Make sure you practice getting out of the car AND killing the electrical system
  • Practice driving off/on track on a simulator because you can’t do this in the real world
  • Don’t race against people, race with them

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