When I was planning the Bradley route, I saw McPherson College’s restoration school as the metaphorical halfway point. Assistant professor Luke Chennell offered to give it a once-over and fix any stubborn issues with the help of the capable staff and students at the school. For a car that spends as much time breaking as it does running, I could not have hand picked a more equipped or capable location.
Luke performed an “exorcism” on the Bradley’s electrics and banished the demons causing the lights all over the car to work at random. And that rear window that sealed in the stifling summer heat? No longer a problem. A new rear window had been installed, offering at least some airflow.
After taking the Bradley to a motorcycle museum, around town for errands, and to the Cosmosphere in Hutchinson, KS — all in blistering heat — Luke and the Bradley were ready to depart.
Being a Kansas native, I applaud Luke’s plan to get up early and to drive fast to conquer the vast emptiness on I-70. During the mind-numbingly straight drive, an afternoon shower rolled in and Luke got to experience the Bradley’s “Forehead Cooler” feature, which allows water to come straight in through the driver’s door and refreshingly spatter against your face.
Luke switched off the Forehead Cooler (by hunching over) and made it through the storm with his nose pressed up against the glass to compensate for the wipers “flopping around” on the windshield.
The air turned thinner and the car started to gasp by the time Denver, CO rolled into view. However, Luke was encouraged to keep his pace up by a couple of club-racer Porsche 911s that he tailed for 30 miles, bringing him in for the night in Denver.
The following day, Luke made it to the next driver Don Welch in Vail, Colorado and reported that the Bradley was a pretty good companion for the drive. He averaged decent speeds, mileage and completed the trip in relative comfort.
This has been just an anecdote of the full day-by-day account Luke has included on the Bradley Facebook page. Luke can write as well as he can repair, so head over to www.facebook.com/pg/scmbradleygt/ and read the full account, which includes some great photos, video and a passionate passage about sausages.