Studless, smooth, and sleek, this racer, known as “Scarlet Mayhem,” was the winner of the first annual Earth to Mars race, which tests a ship’s performance in atmosphere, interplanetary, and reentry situations. The two-man crew take turns flying the craft, similar to the Le Mans car race. Detailed photos are available on Flickr.
The scoops on the tops of the wings provide air for the engines when running inside the atmosphere in scramjet mode. It has a lot of SNOT details – the bottom of the fuselage is mounted studs-down, and covered in tiles and slopes so that no studs or undersides of bricks are showing. The wings are studs-out, made of bricks, and the only conventional part of the ship is the wingtips which do show their undersides. Because of the studs-down bottom, there are no studs inside on the floor for the minifigs to sit on (to add a studs-up floor would require the roof to be higher, ruining the lines, or removing too much interior space for the minifigs). As a result, the minifigs are sitting on 2×4 plate “sleds” which slide into the ship and sit loosely. The cockpit canopy is hinged on the sides.
This model was built mainly using parts from the Enzo Ferrari 1:17 set, borrowing parts from Prehistoric Power and Speedboat sets. Why such a limited source of parts? I’m on vacation in the east coast away from my LEGO collection, but I bought the above sets at the LEGO store during BrickFest 2006.
It’s a little strange to be building LEGO away from home, and with an unfamiliar and reduced palette. Still, I got a lot of great new parts which I look forward to combining with my collection at home when I return.