A Brotherly Challenge
TOM: The answer is because when I called and said, "Right now," you said, "Awww, jeez." You lost the race because I waited until it was pouring rain. And in the pouring rain your car is in big trouble. 'Cause you've got what in your car?
RAY: Slick. Tires without treads, so to speak. And they are not designed to run in wet weather.
TOM: And the truth of the matter is that you get far better traction without treads. And it's curious that you measure tread to figure out how good your tires are; you measure the tread depth. The truth of the matter is, the more tread you have, the worse your traction is. The only reason for the tread is to get rid of the water, so that in the rain the treads are great but the slicks are bad.
RAY: So they push the water out of the way and prevent the car from hydroplaning. So Thomas's car did all right.
TOM: Because I just had plain old, run of the mill, nothing special, good old tires. And I killed him in this race.
[ Car Talk Puzzler ]