Autoduel QuarterlyVolume 9Issue 4

Arena Watch

The Cloverleaf Arena, Dearborn, MI

By M.J. Daniels

The Ford Road-Southfield freeway exchange has always been dangerous. The collapse of law and order in Michigan made the cloverleaf a deadly one. The locals often came by to collect any salvageable materials that were left behind, and watched the motorists battle for the right of way.

Entrepreneurs B.P. Hammer and Ted Downs bought the land surrounding the cloverleaf, and claimed the roads. They widened the on and off ramps, and removed the walls separating the traffic lanes, thus enabling head-on collisions with daydreaming drivers. Spectator seats where roads are blocked off (alternate routes are available) and scheduled duels are held on "the Cloverleaf."

Arena Notes

All of the walls are 5 feet high and are 45 DP. The gates are made of the same materials, and require a forklift to open and close. Because of this, gates are opened only as necessary, are not closed until the events is over, the curves are banked at a D1, and there is no guard rail on the bridge clearance is 11'7". It is 3'4" of concrete and steel, and thus indestructible. The dotted lines indicate the edge of the overpass.


Standard duelling events are held here, as well as races. The typical crowd seems to favor duellists who travel at high speeds. Because of this, dropped weapons are not allowed in about 50% of the events. A favorite event here is the "Cloverleaf Charm"; a duel were high speeds are usually attained. Points in the charm are received as follows: 2 points for a mobility kill, 3 for a firepower kill, and 6 for circling all four infields. 2 or 3 points are lost for being killed in mobility or firepower, respectively. The winner is the first to score (1.25 x number of contenders) +6 points or more.

Arena Tactics

When allowed, use dropped weapons. Despite the banked turns, HC drops quickly and the extra maneuvers could easily spell death at high speeds. Spoilers, airdams, and heavy-duty shocks are also popular and wise.

Issue 9/4 Index

Steve Jackson Games * Car Wars * ADQ Index