Another percentage found at Silverstone
If one can classify the perfect driver as 100% dialled in, it is with much humility must I declare that the discovery of each and every percentage in my arsenal leads me ever closer to this mythical zen of contention.
Silverstone was yet another step closer to this seemingly impossible place of perfection and I suspect the continued worship and championing of my own car has led me to become ‘at one’ with this fine piece of majestic engineering.
I’ve never been a fan of Silverstone, often treating it as nothing other than a large expanse of asphalt too boring for anything other than F1 where cosmic speeds require such wide expanse of runways. However, having destroyed Silverstone this weekend, it is with much regret must I revoke my prior claims of boredom and malcontent as with an increased pace and confidence have I discovered that Silverstone is far more technical than I have ever given it credit for.
I’m using my oversized Corsa Race tyres on the car which have proven to be a revelation in tyre tech, but more importantly have given me the freedom to depend reliably on the tyres enough so I may focus on improving lines and absorbing the very characteristic of my car, which continues to be the utterly benign and predictable beast I’ve come to expect from it.
It’s funny as this week I’ve also had a GT3 specific survey from Porsche. It’s sent to current owners and goes through about 8 pages of very interesting questions – some of which really do prove that Porsche are extremely focused in ensuring this car is very different from the other 911 models. It gladdens me to see Porsche continue to cater for the minority and I hope to god no idiots checked the boxes which suggest owners need more ‘comfort’ or ‘on road civility’. I humbly ask Porsche to ignore any such requests.
So it is with huge respect to Porsche that I continue to gape and gasp at the sheer capability the 997 affords and entertains me. Naturally, the car isn’t a puppy as is often demonstrated – another white 997 GT3 on the same day unfortunately blended in holy matrimony with the tyre wall and, I suspect, cost its owner dearly by way of writing itself off the planet.
But I digress, my car and I are still in love; even after I drive home from an exhausting trackday 100 miles from home, unpack my bags (helmet is permanently left in car) and reverse into the garage, opening said garage the next day to polish out the black rubber marks off the bodywork by turning the key and driving 10 feet out to my drive for a wash, I am filled with a sense of euphoria and complete and utter satisfaction.
I was offered a good price for the car today – a very good price. And I refused it. On what grounds? I hear you ask. Well, there simply wasn’t another GT3 on the market that I wanted to replace it with. Even though Porsche claim ‘Everything has the capacity for improvement’, when asked to list things that disappointed me about the GT3, I was digging for scraps in a barrel and came up with “No iPod connection”. It really is utterly perfect.
When on circuit, in your GT3, when in the ‘zone’, with the alcantara steering wheel working in association with your clammy hands and beads of sweat dripping from your helmet down the side of your temple, the soft chirp-chirp of tyres working at their absolute limit, disputing with the laws of physics as to how lateral grip is working beyond the call of duty, there is absolutely no other place I want to be when chasing that extra percentage.0