Call Rosco P. Coltrane: NASCAR Engines Stolen

If you see an ad on Craigslist in the next few weeks that says something “NASCAR engine for sale - found on side of road,” you should be suspicious. WBTV 3 in Charlotte reports that thieves broke into the Roush/Yates Racing engine shop and made off with three of the motors used by the teams in the Nationwide and Craftsman Truck Series.

Rosco P Coltrane

The total haul? More than $150,000, although you have to wonder what exactly they are planning on doing with them. Sounds like a particularly implausible episode of The Dukes of Hazzard to me.

While it might be pretty impressive to have 750 horsepower going through your 2002 PT Cruiser, the fact is that these aren’t exactly interchangeable with your average street engine. As HOW STUFF WORKS points out, there’s a pretty big difference between the engine in your car and a NASCAR engine.

And I would think that any other NASCAR team would arouse some suspicion when they show up to inspection with an engine with black spray paint covering the words “Property of Roush/Yates Engines.”

The thieves apparently stole the engines Monday night from the shop. Their method of getting in was crude, but effective:

One of the workers said he knew it was going to be a bad day when he came to work and saw a big hole in the wall.

The hole is big enough for thieves to get inside, then open the door.

A giant hole in the wall big enough for people to get inside? What I want to know is: what shape was the hole? If it’s in the shape of a pitcher, I think we might have a suspect, especially of a Kool-Aid Racing team suddenly pops up this week.

Each engine weighs more than 500 pounds, so you can’t exactly just pick them up with a muddy and throw them in the back of your pick-up truck. So how did the bandits get the engines home? In a stolen cargo van, of course - they used a hauler from the nearby Penske race team as their means of transportation. Which makes me wonder: if you’re going to steal a hauler and engines, why not just go all the way and swipe a whole car?