My parents came of age in the seventies and they took me and my little sister to the races pretty regularly when we were growing up. My dad worked in the pits on friends’ cars and sometimes we got to go down there with him and get our eardrums blown by the inconsolable sound of engines and tires all around us. Without any mechanical inclinations myself, but with fierce curiosity and a propensity to put everything into categories, I was always asking and re-asking about the difference between indy car racing, stock car racing, and drag racing. Then there were classic motocross racing and all the varieties of motorcycles. I don’t think I ever figured any of it out, but I can remember the event of going to the races making my nineties upbringing feel a little seventies-tinged, a little gritty and rebellious.
As a grown adult I can’t even drive standard, but harbour a special appreciation for Scorpio Rising and a false sense of authority, like I can uniquely gauge designers’ uses of racing stripes, exaggerated seventies leisure suit collars, and brown suede patchwork on the S/S 2015 runways because of my over-exposure to Victory Lane Speedways and classic rock. (let’s roll with it…) That seventies vibe that designers were pushing for this coming Spring falls flat when it’s too polished or precious. Proenza Schouler win this competition handily – their baggy leather midi-length racecar driver dresses are a fucking dream. Carven crosses the finish line second, sending out a crew of Euro racer girls in stiff smocks clutching their leather satchels to their sides like helmets.