Sunday, February 24, 2008

Wine Country Trip

We had a choice yesterday. Go to PIR with the Ferrari Club and do paced laps, three for $10, or head out to the wine country with another new Ferrari owner and goof off. No contest, wine country goof off trip. Why, well the track was going to be open to anyone so I expected it to be crowded. I will have a chance to make hundreds to trips around PIR on my bike, there are two bicycle races there a week in the summer. Also, I don’t really like big groups. And finally, I understood the paced laps were going to be pretty slow, no helmet required and passengers allowed. So I could go out to PIR, stand around and talk about cars, do a few laps on the track, and drive home. Or, I could drive to a coffee shop, talk about cars, and then drive on some of the best twisty roads around to a friend’s winery.

Barb and I met Kevin and Jon at a Starbucks in Tigard. Kevin took delivery of a red 360 about one month ago. Great looking car. I think a 360 will be my next Ferrari. I am trying to convince Jon to work for our company.

This was my first drive with another Ferrari owner. I know that sounds silly but I was more fun that going on a drive by myself. Why? Because I could look behind me and see the fantastically menacing front end of Kevin’s 360. That is a scary car to have behind you. My car, which is silver, but not the Argento Titanio I thought it was. It is Girgio Titanio. My car is stealthy, loud but stealthy. Kevin’s red car is hard to miss.

We drove out JKCarriere, a winery in the Yamhill valley. Jim, owner/winemaker/friend, was there bottling wine but was nice enough to take a break from his day and let us taste a few of his wines. If you like Pinots 2006 is going to be a great year. We barrel tasted two of his 2006s both were fantastic.

Since I had the pleasure of driving out Barb got to drive back. We let Kevin lead going home. Less scary being behind the 360. That car looks great from every angle. Nice choice Kevin. On the way home a teenager in a tiny Toyota decided it would be fun to see how annoyingly close he could tailgate our car. Why? Did he think we wanted to race? I was worried he would be unable to slow down a quickly as our car and we would have a Toyota stuck to the back of the Ferrari.

One note. The road we took to Jim’s winery is a bit bumpy. I switched the 355 to comfort mode. Even though the road was twisty we were not going fast enough to need sport mode. The car has an adjustable suspension that allows you to choose between two settings. Most of the time you cannot tell but on this road the difference was noticeable. I think the car probably performed better with the softer suspension setting as it was better able to absorb the bumps. Kevin had 19” front wheels and monster 20” rear wheels on his 360. I am surprise that he and Jon were not turned to jelly.

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