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California's new gas tax could cost you $1.30 more per gallon


by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentlemanRacer
@TheGentRacer

Currently drivers in California pay 71.29 cents of taxes for every gallon pumped, the highest gas tax in the nation. The bulk of California's gas taxes come from its excise tax, which increased to 39.5 cents per gallon July 1, 2013. However, thanks to the California Air Resources Board (C.A.R.B.) we can expect gas prices to skyrocket starting in January 2015. All of this thanks to former Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger's business crippling cap & trade plan officially known as Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006.

The act has already had a major impact on jobs in the state causing manufacturers to move to states without the cap & trade policy, which does little to reduce actual "greenhouse gases"  but simply requires manufacturers to buy and sell carbon credits based on how much pollution they create. according to the The California Manufacturers and Technology Association it is estimated that the act has cost California over 260,000 jobs. In just the first five months of 2013 a total of 158 companies have left the Golden State and more are leaving every day.

When it is fully implemented the cost of  the Global Warming Solutions Act to California families is estimated to be as high as $3,800 a year. A big part of that is going to come from the increased gasoline taxes. As businesses and residents flee California's over taxed and over regulated environment they are finding that the savings in electricity in states like Oregon can be as much 80% to 90%. States like Texas boast better business climate but also lower cost of living, in Texas right now you would save 29 cents a gallon in just taxes over California.

In January the bill expands to oil refiners and distributors and the additional $2 billion in costs it is expected to add will be passed along to consumers at the pump. Those costs will have a ripple effect across the entire state's economy which relies heavily on trucks for moving goods.  Since the California government has failed to provide any real transportation solutions other than a bullet train from Firebaugh to Fresno it will have a major impact on all California commuters.

Many are quick to dismiss the economic impact, saying that its just going to be a small increase. But according to the California Air Resources Board we can expect to see a 20 cent to $1.30 per gallon increase come January. Knowing how hungry for money Sacramento is... I would expect it to be on the high side.

"We're going to now tackle probably 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the state that are emitted mostly through transportation - oil and gas use," said Climate Resolve Executive Director Jonathan Parfrey.

What Mr. Parfrey does not say is how paying more money for gasoline reduces the emissions coming out of our tailpipes. So where does all the money go?? Well according to the California Air Resources Board web page the fees are collected from oil refineries, electricity power plants, cement plants and food processors, etc... the money from those fees is used to pay for staffing, contracts, and equipment for the California Air Resources Board and other State agencies. So the businesses are forced to pay a fee to C.A.R.B. so they can fund the inspectors and regulators who collect the fee. But if your company like a power plant that has to keep producing the same amount of power, its hard to reduce emissions...so you just pay a fee to C.A.R.B. and you can keep producing the same amount of pollution.

Extending the cap & trade policy over oil is how progressives in Sacramento are address the evils of driving, the state's largest single source of pollution. By raising the price of gasoline they hope to reduce the number of miles driven as consumers are forced to consider options. But as I have pointed out in past stories we don't have those options in place. So what are the people suppose to do? (Read: Why We don't Take the Bus in California)

But the real motivation behind the policy is Sacramento's insatiable lust for more tax money. By the time full implementation is in place, the state is expected to collect an additional $5 billion in revenue by charging businesses and consumers for the right to pollute. Thus far the state collected $833 billion by selling 'carbon credits'. But if the point was to clean up the environment... why is the state in the business of selling these pollution indulgences?

Last week California sold all of the nearly 22.5 million carbon credits it offered this year, the money is deposited into The California Greenhouse Reduction Account. How the money in  the California Greenhouse Reduction Account  is used is still unclear. Some have said it is essentially a slush fund for pork projects so politicians can build projects in the districts, like building train hubs near properties owned by politicians to boost property value, low income housing projects to buy votes, and the high speed rail boondoggle.  

In the end the average Californian will likely be paying up to an additional $20.80 per tank, that is on top of some of the highest registration and insurance costs in the country. All so we can feed the spending beast that is Sacramento.

Blogger Tricks

Bryan Thompson launches automotive design scholarship

by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentlemanRacer
@TheGentRacer

TruTV's season finale of Motor City Masters aired last night and while Camilo Pardo took home the honor of Motor City Master. Designers of the future are the real winners thanks to Bryan Thompson who came in second. First prize was $100,000 and a Camaro Z28. But Thompson had committed to giving anything won to start a scholarship for students interested in car design. Knowing this Pardo gave Thompson the Camaro so he can auction off the car, worth some $80,000 to kick off the Bryan Thompson Design Scholarship.

Thompson (pictured on the left) on Motor City Masters season finale with fellow design Camilo Pardo 

"My goal is to find that kid out there who is being told there is something wrong with him," Thompson told FrontiersLA.com from a poolside viewing party. "And I want him to know that he is right and everyone else is wrong."

Learn more about the scholarship at bryanthompsondesign.com/philanthropy



Bugatti Veyron Crashed On Purpose

by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentlemanRacer
@TheGentRacer

You might remember way back in 2009 when Andy House of Performance Auto Sales crashed one of just 15 (at the time) Bugatti Veyron's in the US went flying off the road and landed in the Gulf of Mexico. If not you can see the old post with video HERE

According to federal authorities Andy admitted to deliberately driving his $1.6 million car into Gulf waters so that he could collect insurance on the vehicle and has pleaded guilty to wire fraud. House had purchased the Bugatti Veyron and had it insured for $2.2 million.

His original story was that he crashed while reaching for his cell phone, landing in the water near Galveston, Texas. The salt water flooded the engine ruining the car, the viral video of the crash was one of the key pieces of evidence used against House. He faces up to 20 years in prison for the fraud charges.

Source: ABC 13




Shelby by Bill Caron

 by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentRacer

Photographer Bill Caron was kind enough to share some photos from a recent shoot with several Shelby Club members. The classic Shelby's always capture my attention but Bill's great photography makes the late model cars really stand out. Bill can be reached here






Adam Levine spotted in Porsche Turbo S

by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentRacer

Adam Levine is known for driving amazing classics around Los Angeles like his Mercedes 300SL, his 356 Porsche, or his Ferrari 365 GTC. Perhaps it was a little too hot in the city this summer and something with modern AC was required. He was spotted getting into this Porsche Turbo S, and it makes you wonder what other cars he has in his stable.



Source: Zimbio

Video: Cheap Chinese Tire Review

by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentRacer

So everyone has an opinion on Cheap Chinese Tires, but no one I knew had tried them out. So I popped on to OnlineTires.com and bought a set. After driving around for about 6 months I made this short video on my impression of the Kenforest tires. These are from the same company that makes "MAYRUN”, "DAILYWAY", and  "SUPASTONE" tires in Guangzhou, China,so quality on those brands would likely be similar.

After 6 months I have to say, I am impressed with the Kenforest tires and instead of calling them cheap... I would say they are an inexpensive alternative to more popular brands of tires (Sorry Goodyear, who is a sponsor). Check out the video and let me know if you have had any experience with Chinese tires good or bad in the comments section.


New Car Show on Discovery Channel: Highway to Sell

Press Release

(Los Angeles, CA)– Every guy’s ultimate four-wheel fantasy becomes his worst nightmare when he is forced to choose between the cash he desperately needs and the classic ride he always knew his clunker could become in Discovery Channel’s all new series, HIGHWAY TO SELL premiering on September 1 at 10PM ET/PT.


Across America, neglected classic cars are waiting to be restored and make their way back onto the street. Enter Dennis Pittsenbarger and “Slick.” Over the years, automotive expert Pittsenbarger has made a name for himself in the car world. A walking encyclopedia of automotive history and design, Pittsenbarger is a long-time race car driver with a working knowledge of nearly every car make and model ever made. His partner in chrome, mechanical mastermind Slick, has retooled hundreds of cars in his 12,000 square ft. Florida shop, and created period-perfect movie cars for Hollywood Films.

Rather than just buying broken down vehicles from their owners, the pair deals differently.  Dennis, Slick and their team spend their own money and time working to restore the car to its former glory. However, once they are done, the car goes to auction where the owner has a difficult choice to make: take a cut of the profits, or buy their cherished ride back at a discounted rate.

Will the owners choose to let go of their beloved classics and walk away with the cash, or will the thought of seeing their dream car in the hands of another be too much to handle? It’s cash vs. classics in the all new series, HIGHWAY TO SELL.

HIGHWAY TO SELL is produced for Discovery Channel by Twelve02 Television, where Jim Casey is executive producer. For Discovery Channel, Joseph Boyle is executive producer with Todd Lefkowitz as associate producer.

About Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel is dedicated to creating the highest quality non-fiction content that informs and entertains its consumers about the world in all its wonder, diversity and amazement. The network, which is distributed to 100.8 million U.S. homes, can be seen in 210 countries and territories, offering a signature mix of compelling, high-end production values and vivid cinematography across genres including, science and technology, exploration, adventure, history and in-depth, behind-the-scenes glimpses at the people, places and organizations that shape and share our world. For more information, please visit www.discovery.com.

About Discovery Communications

Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is the world’s #1 pay-TV programmer reaching 2.7 billion cumulative subscribers in more than 220 countries and territories. Discovery is dedicated to satisfying curiosity, engaging and entertaining viewers with high-quality content on more than 210 worldwide television networks, led by Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery and Science, as well as U.S. joint venture network OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network. Discovery also controls Eurosport International, a premier sports entertainment group, including six pay-TV network brands across Europe and Asia. Discovery also is a leading provider of educational products and services to schools, including an award-winning series of K-12 digital textbooks, and a digital leader with a diversified online portfolio, including Discovery Digital Networks. For more information, please visit www.discoverycommunications.com.

Dillon Van Way Wins 2014 Super Production Championship

Press Release:

22-year old Dillon Van Way, of Carencro, Louisiana, has successfully locked up the Super Production Champion title as a result of his second place finish at last weekend’s Ojibwe Forests Rally in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota.

The event was the seventh round in the eight round Rally America National Championship. Even with one more round to go, Dillon has mathematically ensured that his closest contender, Nick Roberts, cannot win the title even if Van Way does not finish the next race. Even more notable than just winning the Championship is the fact that this is Dillon’s first season in the Super Production class.  He raced a two-wheel-drive Ford Fiesta in previous years.

“One year ago we went to Ojibwe with a goal of winning the SP Championship in 2014 and it was amazing to accomplish that goal almost one year later to the day,” said Van Way. “This past season has pushed me as a driver with learning a new car and the competition at every round was some of the best I have faced in my career.”

The title is a victory for not only Dillon and co-driver Andrew Edwards but for the whole team responsible for keeping the car in top form all season long.

“I can’t thank the team enough for all the hard work, dedication and energy they put into this championship. The true testament of their skill shows in that even on the races we had the worst luck, they were able to keep the car going to at least a 2nd place finish! So thank you Clint, Marc, Cullen, John, Paul, Bowen and Sean for being a part of the team. It wouldn’t have been possible without you,” mentioned Dillon.

Dillon’s program is made possible by DirtFish Rally School, Scrubblade Windshield Wipers, Fifteen52 and Meister Watches.

Stay up to date on all of Dillon’s travels at www.DVW600.com, Instagram @DVW600, Twitter @DVW_600 and Facebook.com/VanWayRacing

Style: Jeans & Tee Shirts

by Michael Satterfield

Fitness guru Nick Long of NickFitt stopped by the barn last week for a quick photo shoot. I had just received some new watches in from MAX Watches to review and check out. So I pulled some products from my line Morgan's & Phillip's, some classic Levi's and some glasses from my favorite online glasses shop Zenni and we put together this quick shoot. (Links to all the products are at the bottom of this post)


There are tee shirts and there tee shirts, for this shoot I used tees from both my premium and basic line, you can see that the premium tees are fitted and less boxy, depending on your body type you might want to go with a more boxy tee, if you happen to be a personal trainer like Nick go with the fitted tee.

Watch Orange Legend - 52mm by MAX Watches, Tee Gulf by MP Speed Shop
I ran across this company MAX Watches online and sent them a message asking if I could check out some of their newest line. They sent over several watches in different styles for me to look at. MAX watches are designed in the Netherlands and manufactured overseas using Japanese automatic and quartz movements. They have watches priced between $22-$700 and all come in nice packaging and are well designed. In handling the watches they have a nice weight to them, they don't feel cheap and while many of their designs echo higher end watches like Tag Heuer they are unique enough to stand on their own. Out of the watches I have seen in person I would have to say that the Tobacco Gentlemen or the Flare Grand Prix would be welcome additions to my collection.

Watch Flare Grand Prix - 40x45mm by MAX Watches

Watch Flare Grand Prix - 40x45mm by MAX Watches, Tee Shelby by MP Basics

Tee Shelby by MP Speed Shop, Watch Orange Legend - 52mm by MAX Watches
Jeans Levi's 511s, Glasses Zenni Optical.

There are pretty much two brands of denim that dominate my closet and my styling racks, Levi's the American classic, and American Eagle Outfitters. Today's shoot we used some standard Levi's 511's and stuck with that. For the ultra denim obsessed I know you can preach about your $400 virgin denim from Japan you have been wearing for 5 years before its first wash to get that perfect fit... well I like jeans but since I do actual things that involve more than sitting around a coffee shop on denim forums I like jeans that fit well, last, and are not so dear to me that I would not be willing to climb under a old Fiat on the side of the road. Levi's and American Eagle tick all those boxes and you can buy them anywhere, but some of my favorite pairs have come from my favorite thrift store Community West in Corona California.

Watch Nitro GP Racer - 42mm by MAX Watches


Watches: MAX Watches
Jeans: Levi's via Community West Upscale Resale (Thrift Store)
Glasses: Zenni Optical

A Gentleman Racer: David Gandy

by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentRacer

In these images photographer Ian Derry captures a real life Gentleman Racer, David Gandy. His work as a leading male model has lived the jet setter lifestyle, from being the face of the largest department store in the Philippines to starring in music videos and shooting short films with brands like Jaguar. But he is more than just a model, writer, and menswear icon...he is an actual racing driver.

Gandy got his racing license in 2012 and has raced in events like the Mille Miglia race in Italy driving a 1950 XK120. He has also raced in other amature events and can often be found behind the wheel of a Mercedes or Jaguar.

For more images visit Ian Derry's website HERE






Craigslist: Gulf Racing Corvette


One of the coolest Corvettes I have see pop up on Craigslist is rocking a full Steve McQueen/Gulf Racing inspired wrap. The 2005 Z51 Corvette is listed on the Los Angeles craigslist for $21,500. The owner of the car runs a racing school called Open Track Racing and is selling off some of his other toys according to the ad. 

You can see the ad HERE 



Video: BMW M4 races through M-History

Posted by Michael Satterfield
@TheGentRacer

The first-ever BMW M4 was welcomed into the BMW M family by navigating through a thrilling, one-of-a kind course created entirely out of current and classic BMW M vehicles sourced from fans.  BMW enthusiasts from all over the country volunteered their BMW M vehicles from every generation to be a part of this exclusive experience, including an ultra-rare BMW 1 Series M Coupe.

With 52 total cars, 4 race cars and 11,566 horsepower, precision drivers Matt Mullins, Chief Driving Instructor, BMW Performance Driving School and Chris Forsberg, Formula Drift Champion, put the BMW M4 through the specially-designed course that formed the shape of a BMW M Series logo - revealed at the end of the video.

The 2015 BMW M4 Coupe is powered by the same 3.0-liter inline-6 cylinder engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology as its M3 sibling. The BMW M4 Coupe features increased performance levels that distinguish it from previous generations of the M3 family, delivering 425 horsepower. The BMW M4 Coupe will start with an MSRP of $65,125.

The M Initiation video is now available on BMW of North America's YouTube and social media channels with the hashtag #MRated.


Source: BMW North America