I really enjoyed it!
Hannah, my wife, bought me the experience for my 30th birthday last December but I’ve only recently been able to find a date which worked for all the family. I have no idea how much it cost, although I’m pretty sure she’ll have found a discount somewhere! The event was held near York, and Vision Motorsport, who ran the day, have also got a track near Oxford that they use.
I drove, in order, an Aston Martin V8 Vantage, Lamborghini Gallardo, Ferrari 360 and a Porsche GT3. In order of preference, I’d go:
- Aston Martin
Most people there preferred the Porsche, but I managed to overtake the person driving that in the Aston Martin! The Ferrari was just out of this world in terms of raw power and acceleration. The steering was precision and the traction control just made driving it a breeze. I remember Jeremy Clarkson reviewing the Lamborghini Gallardo and pointing out the weird driving position: the pedals are over to the left which means you kind of have to twist your body.
On the other hand, if I had to pick a car to drive every day, I’d choose the Aston Martin. It’s a refined, more comfortable car that’s really smooth to drive. I suppose that’s why rich businessmen drive it. You’d have to be pretty ostentatious to drive a Lamborghini Gallardo around the place – especially in bright yellow!
Hannah asked me a pertinent question on the way back home. I’ve got a Ford Puma, an absolutely awesome machine which is pretty quick and hugs corners. She asked if, had I not bought my Puma last year, whether I’d have enjoyed the experience more. I suppose that yes, I probably would. Our other car, a Ford Focus C-MAX is very much a family car and handles like a ship compared to my Puma. So, if I’d been used to driving that instead of my Puma for the last 10 months, then I suppose the day would have been even better.
As it was, I thought it certainly lived up to its ‘fantastic’ billing. It’s just a shame that a couple of the instructors kept telling me off for taking the corners too fast…
Update: I created a video…
(and yes, those photos have been HDR-ised and I added F1 noises!)