Most people have watched Jeremy Clarkson whizz around the Top Gear track while making ooing and ahhing noises. I’ve always wanted to know, would driving a supercar be as fun as it looks? Because damn does it look fun!
I’d worked for a year in England, and every morning on my way to work I would walk passed a Ferrari Garage. Months of gawking at the beautiful and fantastically over priced cars took their toll. Eventually my curiosity built until I had to know, just how awesome are supercars and would driving one change my life?
After some in-depth research online and a long chat with my big brother we decided to head out for a track day and see what all this fuss was about. We wanted to visit a race center that had a good selection of cars; this meant making a trip to Warwickshire. Luckily my grandparents lived close by so we could fill a weekend with both octogenarian activities and adrenalin!
We arrived at the track early, it was a bright day with a couple of clouds but no threat of rain, the track was packed with cars and excited balding middle age men. I’d selected three cars to drive. First off was the Audi R8. She was a good german machine, classy yet humble. I could imagine driving an R8 through town without looking like a total jerk. The first thing that struck me about the Audi was the seats, this was a comfortable car. I buckled in and felt like the whole chair was hugging me, which would prove to be very useful when hurtling around corners at high speed! I felt a bit giddy pulling out of the lane in such an expensive and beautiful car, the instructor incessantly yammered on about safety while I got to grips with the paddle shift gearbox. Pulling onto the track I suddenly understood why people pay so much for these cars, they are not machines they are art! The Audi smoothly accelerated away, purring when she wanted to change up a gear, a quick flick of the paddle gear shifter and we were roaring, reaching 100mph in literally seconds. I took it easy for the first two laps of the track, getting to grips with a whole new type of car.
Next up was the glamour girl, a convertible Lamborghini Balboni. What this car had in looks it lacked in comfort, I wouldn’t have liked to do a long journey with such a crap interior. But when I got out onto the track all thoughts of comfort were lost. The Lamborghini people hadn’t put in nice seats because they directed all their energy towards performance. The lambo put the Audi to shame with it’s acceleration. Before I thought I had been going fast, this was another level. It was seat wettingly fast. The instructor in this car was a lot more fun, he scolded me for not going fast enough on the corners while I tried to keep all four tyres on the road. I had to be pried out of the Lamborghini because when my time was up, I wasn’t ready to leave.
Last but not least was the Ferrari 458 and it was probably the most fun to drive. It lacked the style and class of the R8, and didn’t have quite the acceleration or smooth gear transitions of the Lambo. But the Ferrari handled incredibly well, it felt like a go-cart that had consumed Arnold Schwarzenegger’s lifetime supply of steroids. This engine ate tarmac for breakfast, and liked to play. The 458 rumbled like thunder and moved like lightning.
I’d started the day thinking that the R8 would steal the show but if I had quarter of a million pounds to burn it’s Lamborghini who would get my cash. However with cars this fast there is no place better to drive them than on a track. All those people crawling around london at 25 miles an hour in their performance motors need to rethink their lives! Next time I take a super car out for a spin I am going to pay the extra £50 for the accidental damage waiver and really put the peddle to the metal!