Drivin' While Getting Shot At

...or chased, or side swiped.....

After the morning of shooting things (including people...woopsie!) our team moved onto the "Extreme Driving" portion of our day.

We went through different stations, jumping into various forms of barely still-running cars that had been beaten to within inches of their lives. Our first station involved us driving basically around a square, on a narrow path in between barracades. We did this until another car at the other end of our winding "street" took off after us in a game of chicken, angrily honking its horn at us while we fumble to get our car in reverse and back out around all the corners and spin around at the end and get away from the other car.

First of all, that other car looked gnarly:

which added to the drama. But I'm happy to report I successfully backed out of the barracades.

I can not say that for several others doing this course. People got hit by the other car, people accidentally got turned sideways in between the barricades, and one guy freaked out and somehow backed up onto the barricade.

So I was feeling pretty good as we moved on to: J Turns.

J turns are super fun but a little startling at first. Especially when it's just me and Angie alone in the car trying to hear our instructor on the radio tell us what to do. Which is basically: Floor it in reverse, slam your steering wheel to the left, sling your car in a 180 while putting it in Drive, then step on the gas again to keep going forward.

So we had some mishaps, like forgetting the whole "put it in Drive" part or accidentally killing our engine mid-sling-around, but overall we did well. And much more giggling ensued, which I'm sure our hardened former military instructors just loved....

After J Turns, we travel to the next station where we jump in even worse shape cars and proceed to spin each other out.

We got in my car -- and the brakes had stopped working. We used it anyway.

As I'm driving, the instructor is asking me what my favorite cartoon is, trying to keep me distracted while another car - also driven by someone who had no idea what they were doing - comes up, cuts into my rear fender, and spins us out.

It was actually pretty fun. Especially when it was my turn to hit the other car.

I get done knocking the other car off the road and my instructor starts to say "ok, just turn Right here and..."

but I've already turned Left. And we have no brakes.

So he stammers "...or a series of left turns..." as I giggle apologetically.

We finally rolled to a stop and I get in the backseat so my teammate can drive, and I proceed to enjoy being flung around while we get spun out again.

Then I realize I had forgotten to put my seatbelt on. Awesome. We are forced to wear helmets, our car has no brakes, and I don't even think to buckle my seatbelt.

When I get back to the side lines, Angie admits that her helmet flew off during their run. Clearly she and I are just made for this stuff.....

We move on to the final station which is: learning how to ram through another car and keep going.

I now want this station in my backyard to play with after every single one of my work days. Best stress reliever EVER.
You get in a car - with your partner in the passenger side - and a guy comes up to your partner's window and pulls a gun and you are supposed to floor it, drive through the car in front of you, and get to safety.

So I'm sitting there ready. And the guy pulls the gun on Angie.

Angie: "AAAAAAAHH! GO GO GO!" I floor it.

...and the car sits there, revving the engine.

I look at Angie, look at the guy with the gun, and now me and Angie are both yelling.


And I can see that I do actually have it in drive- but yet it just sits there.

Finally the guy "holding us up" has to break character and get the decrepit car to realize what gear its in, and I barrel through the other car, stop, and begin to open the door to get out -

and the inside of the door falls off.

Sweet! I may have had a slow start, but I ruined part of a car! Yes!

We watch the rest of the group go, enjoying each time they barrel through the dummy car. And everyone is choosing to ram the back of the dummy car. Everyone until Grandma.

So I haven't mentioned that there's a grandmother doing this course with us who has more testosterone than the boys on our team. She kept referencing the different ways she'd like to physcially abuse her exes to the point where Angie and I just tried to stay away from her.

Well Grandma gets in the car and hits the FRONT of the dummy car, which we all applaud cuz none of us chose that route -- and we all quickly realize why we didn't choose that route.

By driving at the angle it takes to hit the front of the car, you inevitably head towards a line of other cars just off to the side of the course, minding their own business.

So now Granny drives through the first car, and ricochets off the line of cars - and just keeps going. Doesn't even let off the gas.

Granny just totally schooled us.

Even so, we all feel pretty cool now knowing how to do these different manuevers. So at the end of the day, Angie and I confidently jump back in my Mustang and start to head home.

And we promptly get lost.

Still within the training grounds.

And we end up accidentally driving right up onto one of shooting ranges.

Yeah. So...maybe we won't quit our jobs just yet to become Navy Seals.

But what a fun experience.....

There's a video that someone else did that shows some of the experience here: