Event: A Wet August Peak Drive

Supercars in the rain

Supercars in the rain

When it rains, it pours. And pour it did. As a hallmark to the final Sheffield Supercar Sunday drive the weather could no longer hold out and it bolted it down. Expecting a poor turnout, there was a pleasant surprise waiting at Sheffield on this early Sunday morning. Many of the regulars had made it with a few new members turning up too! Even a Ferrari Testarossa came to the party – a car that many believe could disintegrate in anything other than California summer conditions. Well, I am pleased to report that it didn’t, although it did need a few push-starts every now and again. Italian electrics, you see.

A magnificent car though – classic 80’s Ferrari and with those wide square hips it looked positively huge as we trudged through pelting rain and puddles. Steve had also made the event in his Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder. That car looked good. No, actually, it looked bloomin’ awesome. Steve has had the car just under a year, after swapping his previous Audi R8. He reveals the Gallardo is the better car of the two. To date nothing has gone wrong with the car, save a minor issue with the washer jets which was promptly fixed with a little poking about and the odd prod-and-spanner.

Supercar Lineup

Supercar Lineup

After coffee and conversation we shortly depart on what was undoubtedly the best-planned driving route that we have ever had on the Sheffield Supercar Sunday. Carefully detailed, mapped, post-coded for Sat Nav and a designated lead car (a red RS4 no less) ensured that the group was kept together for the duration – and crucially no-one got lost. The roads were truly fantastic, cutting through some of the quieter areas of the peak district and climbing the high hills revealing spectacular views – all whilst travelling in a convoy of some of the worlds most superb and varied motorcars.We stopped at a pub somewhere on the lofty heights of the district and went inside for a warm and a coffee.

James has come along from Manchester in his Maserati Gransport. Based on the 4200 but with improved handling and  performance it’s a rare and special car. James confirms that the Gransport takes the 4200 away from the GT and more towards the sports-car arena. With 400bhp, focused handling and 0-60 in 4.7 seconds, the stats certainly back up this claim! The Gransport rear lights were up for debate – with preference shown for the boomerang style from the previous model, which were ultimately dropped for the 4200 in order to meet US legislation. “I heard about someone doing a conversion”, James tells me. “It cost around £6,000 to put the boomerangs onto the 4200!” I imagine that’s a pretty exclusive conversation!

As we departed the rain had lightened but the wind was still in abundance. Back inside my car, with the warmth of the car heaters and we are on our way, heading through some smaller villages with surprised smiles beaming from residents as the convoy respectfully passed through their town. Our next destination – the bookstore.

After some more fun on the winding roads, and an almost sideways moment for one of the Skylines, we arive at the bookstore. Not just any old bookstore – but the bookstore. Settled in the middle of seemingly nowhere is a large paper repository-cum-café. With sandwiches and drinks on tap for our convoy it was a great chance to mingle with the group and get to know all of the owners.

A Line of Nissan GTRs

A Line of Nissan GTRs

John comes over to say hello. A fellow Cayman owner – or at least he was – he has just traded for a 911. Today though, he has come in his mental blue Skyline – it needed an outing. The Skyline is currently kicking out around 700bhp. It’s a track focused weapon but time restrictions means that it spends less time on the track than John would like. The Skyline forms part of a photo lineup, ranging from the original R33 GTS-T model, up to the latest GTR – today we are fortunate to have both a black and a white versions in our midst. A few more photos and chat ensued before the morning run was drawn to a close.

We had the roads. We had the views, the cars, the noise and the right kind of people. There was fun, drinks, food, chatter and – most of all – driving. The only thing we didn’t have was the weather, but to be honest that just made the drama of the scenic, quiet peak hills even more spectacular.

Images courtesy of www.supercardriver.com

August 2010