Many people will know that I’m a bit of a petrol head. I enjoy driving. I really enjoy driving. I enjoy watching motorsport, and follow Formula 1 with something resembling anal retentivness. I also follow the WRC.
A problem with my petrol-headedness is that, in the past, I had a tendency to, errr, push it a little. Or push it enough to terrify those who are in the vehicle with me. But I’m better now. Since recieving points and fines, anyway. The main problem, over the last four years, has been my lack of car at uni. Which was rectified yesterday.
So I’ve got the car over here now, for a couple of weeks. And I’ve been exploring some of the finer driving roads about the fine town of Leamington (hint: the road through Stoneleigh is very nice at speed). Of course, it cost money to get the car over, adn my mother generously provided the required funds. Provided I did a few things.
One of these things was to deliver a parcel to one of her cousins, who has the misfortune to live in Milton Keynes. So, on the road from Liverpool last evening, I contacted said cousin, asking if she wanted the parcel delivered that night.
“No!”, said she, “for I have a better idea! I am aware that you share some of the same genes as me, and my family are full of petrol-heads. I therefore assume that you, too, are a petrol-head!”
“But, cousin,” said I, “you know I am a petrol-head, for you took me to an MG-club race day at Silverstone last year, and I nearly passed out from the pleasure!”
“True,” said she, “but the gene bit sounded good. How about, instead of driving to the dive that is Milton Keynes, you deliver it to Silverstone tomorrow? I shall meet you at the gates with a guest pass for the British Racing Drivers Clubhouse, which is conviently in the centre of the circuit, with a stunning view of the circuit from Bridge to the back of the grid.”
“Sounds fantastic,” say I, “but why? Surely Silverstone is dead this time of year! Why would you be there? Would it not be easier for you if I drop it off round your place?”
“Possbly,” came the reply, “but there is less liklihood of there being a Formula 1 testing session round the centre of MK, wouldn’t you say?”
“You don’t mean…” “Why, yes I do. Ferrari, Williams, BAR, Jaguar and Sauber will all be there…”
For some reason, I made up my mind there and then to go…
So, today, I had to make the dreaded journey into Northamptonshire, and go to Silverstone. Where I sat in the amazing Clubhouse, watched three Ferraris practice, a Jaguar’s engine go, the Saubers pretty much fly round the circuit, and the Williams team monopolise the paddock (seriously, they had about a million trucks). I can’t seem to remember the BAR cars doing anything remotely interesting, so that’s an improvement on their ‘retire with style/smoke/explosion/aerial gymnastics’ stylee. I had lunch with a gentleman (who had his GT-40 severely damaged in a veterans race on the Le Mans circuit), his wife (who informed me of some of the shadier financial dealings in the world of motorsport, and who was currently suing whom for slander/non-payment/blah), the woman who manages Mark Webber, the Secretary of the Club and the cousin. And all was nice.
The best bits? Well, the camera helicopter doing a vertical 180 was good… Oh, you meant the cars? The noise of the Ferraris. The sound of a single Ferrari was amazing. The sound of three was undoubtably the finest sound known to man. If it fails to stir your soul, then I’m afraid that you’re soul-less. I recorded a bit on the phone, but since I don’t have the stuff to download things from my phone to the computer over here, I can’t link to it.
I took a few photos as well, but I have to get them developed and scanned soon. Then I will post some, promise.
Incidently, the drive back along the B4525 was a lot of fun. Did I mention that I really enjoy driving fairly fast down country roads? No? I’ll mention that at some later point then…
Oh, and speed cameras are evil. But at those on the B4525 were painted bright blue and in sensible places, where any sane person would slow down.
Yes, Joe, I did slow down. I told you, I’ve moved on from the ‘mach-1 down the Caddy Road’ stage of my life.
Now, now Ollie. No need to be like that. Congrats on getting your own webspace, by the way.
in that heap of dung you have over there im not surprised, i seem to remember you having to perform a quick stop when the road ended before you thought it did and we nearly ended up in the hedge, mach 1 in the volvo wasnt bad, it wasnt good either but at least you knew that you were safer than whatever it was you were unfortunate enuff to hit, oh and about the rest of the post, i told the guys in the pub last nite where you where at lunch time and the unanamous feeling of the group was: BASTARD
I’d figured that you’d been informing people. Mainly because I got a few texts and missed calls from people I haven’t heard from in a while. Mainly along the lines of “bastard. jammy, jammy bastard!”
And the important thing is that I never ended up in the hedge. In a local cops car, yes, but a hedge, no.
And I’ll accept your criticism when you’ve got a valid licence