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Farewell – it’s been memorable!

Discussion in '206/246' started by Bluebottle, Nov 3, 2020.

  1. Bluebottle

    Bluebottle F1 Veteran
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    Oct 15, 2012
    6,772
    Exeter and Cirencester
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    John
    My Dino has gone - to Australia, and to someone who will, I believe, cherish it for many years into the future. It has been a great experience, but sadly my five years of Dino ownership are now over. Why did I sell it, you may ask. Well, it was the luck of the draw. Let me explain.

    By the beginning of this year, one thing had become clear to me, namely that I had too many cars: 6, ignoring DDs – not a great many by some people’s standards, but too many for me. Ownership was becoming as much a chore as a pleasure, none was being used as much as it should (cars IMO are for driving, not just polishing / admiring), and it was time to reduce my collection. So, on my 65th. birthday in February, I set myself a goal to go from 6 to 3 (not reckoning on the problems that would present themselves only a few weeks later).

    What was not clear, however, was which ones I wanted to sell, because I didn't want to sell any of them individually. Each one was special, so, whichever way I looked at it, the “keep” list outnumbered the “sell” list by 6 to 0.

    The Porsche 964 was a brilliant little car, with emphasis on the word "little" - its size was a great advantage. Any 911 is special, but the 964 was the perfect compromise between old and new: it was the last 911 that actually looked like Butzi Porsche’s 901, and the first that came with the modern conveniences that made it an agreeable DD (which it was when I first acquired it). I had bought it with a legacy from my mother who died in 2000, so it was her last present to me. I had owned it for getting on for 20 years and had done 65,000 miles in it. It was part of the family. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.

    The Maranello was the fulfilment of a childhood dream: I had grown up in an era when Ferraris had V12s in front of the driver, and the first Ferrari that made a lasting impression on me was the 500 Superfast. The Maranello is an amazingly capable car (a far more capable driver than am I, that’s for sure) and a bridge between the traditional berlinettas of the '60s and the modern cars of today. Nothing Ferrari has made after the Maranello floats my boat, Daytonas and their predecessors are not within my price range, and the flat 12s are not what my childhood memories say a Ferrari should be. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.

    E-types have been in my blood since I first saw one 57 years ago. An E-type was the car that first kindled my passion for beautiful and exotic machinery, and if Enzo Ferrari didn’t say that it was the most beautiful car in the world, he should have done. I bought my first one at the age of 19, though insurance issues meant that I did not keep it for very long. My present car is my third, and my ideal: a '63 3.8 FHC, in BRG / suede green. They don't come any better IMO. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.

    The Dino is also a car that held special memories for me, from the time when, in my early 20s, I had been let loose in one at Goodwood on a track day organised for the directors / owners of Modena Engineering. I had promised myself then that one day I would have one and, almost 40 years later, I raided my pension fund and made good on that promise. I shall never forget the greatest road trip of my life, 2,500 miles to Maranello and back for the Dino’s 50th. anniversary celebration in 2018. It is certainly the best car I have ever owned, and may be the best car that Ferrari ever made. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.

    The Maserati Granturismo is, IMO, the most beautiful of Pininfarina’s 21st. century designs, and its engine note, without the need for any electronic enhancement, one of the best of any modern car. Collecting it personally from the factory in Modena was a wonderful experience, which I am unlikely ever to repeat. It is not a great car, but a very satisfying one to own, and it was very special for me. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.

    And then there’s the Bentley. Totally different from the rest, but a wonderful driving / ownership experience in its own inimitable way - the true “drawing room on wheels”, with the best appointed interior of all my cars, and a worthy successor to WO’s masterpiece, the 8-litre. The Turbo R is the car that turned Bentley from a badge-engineered Rolls-Royce on the brink of extinction, into a successful marque in its own right, outselling its R-R brethren by 4 to 1, and so securing its future. It has a surprising turn of speed, but yet is so relaxing that one never really feels the need to exploit that speed – one just feels content to waft along in great comfort and style, and let the world rush by. Like the Porsche, I have owned it for a long time – almost 18 years. I have driven my two nephews and my niece to their weddings in it, and fully expect to do the same service for my daughter one day, so it, too, is part of the family. And it is the only one of my “toys” in which my wife really enjoys travelling. So, no, I couldn’t possibly let it go.​

    So, each one had a special place in my affections, and several good reasons not to be sold: there was no obvious choice to be on the list, let alone three. After long deliberation, I decided that the only thing to do was to put them all up for sale and let fate, and the market, decide for me. They were all ambitiously priced, but I don’t think that in itself deterred any serious buyers.

    fThe result was that the 964 was the first to go, followed by the Dino and then the Maserati (to which I shall admit that I gave a little push, largely to prevent the 550 from being the next casualty – to lose one Ferrari is unfortunate, to lose two would seem like carelessness, with a apologies to Lady Bracknell), leaving me with the 550, the Jaguar and the Bentley (and a ‘72 VW T2 campervan, but that is the property of my wife).

    I loved my Dino, enjoyed every one of the 6,133 miles I drove in it, and shed a tear or two when it went, but the memories will last me a lifetime.

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  3. NoGoSlow

    NoGoSlow Formula Junior

    Jul 29, 2014
    583
    Republic of Texas
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    Mark Jacks
    Wow, great story. Thanks for sharing, John, and best wishes for a long and happy life with your smaller harem. :)
     
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  4. TonyL

    TonyL F1 Rookie

    Sep 27, 2007
    3,018
    UK
    Full Name:
    Tony
    I am possibly a few years behind you but eventually my collection may have a similar fate soon + the flood of tears that will follow!
    Good luck with your remaining cars.
    Tony
    PS thats a iconic photo of your car under the ferrari banner, well worth getting it put on canvas
     
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  5. TheMayor

    TheMayor Eight Time F1 World Champ
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    Feb 11, 2008
    82,854
    Vegas baby
    We don't really own these cars. We are just caretakers for the next generation.

    I sold my Dino after 15 years of ownership. It needed a major restoration when I sold it. Today, that car is an award winner. If I didn't buy it in 1982, it would have ended up junked or parted out. I helped one more Dino survive. I'm rather happy about that.

    We all have to move on someday. But you have been like 0.0000000000000000001% of the population to have ever owned one. And that's something special.
     
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  6. Glassman

    Glassman F1 World Champ
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    What a very cliche load of crap. Anything I spend my hard earned mony on is mine.
     
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  8. TheMayor

    TheMayor Eight Time F1 World Champ
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    Feb 11, 2008
    82,854
    Vegas baby
    Of course it is. No one said it isn't your money (or sweat equity). But we don't put them in the garbage disposal when we are through with them. And most likely neither does the next owner.

    They get passed down from person to person as long as people appreciate cars like these.

    They are time machines.
     
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  9. Glassman

    Glassman F1 World Champ
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    This is the only thing in your post that makes any sense all.
     
  10. TheMayor

    TheMayor Eight Time F1 World Champ
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    Feb 11, 2008
    82,854
    Vegas baby

    I kinda feel sorry for you...
     
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  11. dudlow

    dudlow Karting

    Feb 28, 2011
    166
    Surrey UK
    Hi

    Is it possible to pm you John, I can't quite figure out if I can or not ?
     
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  13. Jack-the-lad

    Jack-the-lad Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Jun 22, 2004
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    Click on his screen name and when his profile box appears click on start a conversation.
     
  14. dudlow

    dudlow Karting

    Feb 28, 2011
    166
    Surrey UK
  15. Jamie H

    Jamie H Formula 3
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    Aug 28, 2009
    2,324
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    Jamie
    Thanks for sharing, a difficult decision indeed. I can only hope that I can remain lucid enough to enjoy my modest collection for awhile longer (I just turned 60). I hope you enjoy what you have !!
     
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  16. Mang

    Mang F1 Rookie

    Jul 11, 2007
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    Mike S.
    Your Dino specifically is/was always my favorite, color, specs, stance, details...an incredible specimen!
     
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  17. Bluebottle

    Bluebottle F1 Veteran
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    Oct 15, 2012
    6,772
    Exeter and Cirencester
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    John
    Thankyou all for your contributions. Yes, I feel very privileged to have enjoyed my spell of Dino ownership, and of this car in particular. Many happy memories.:)

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  18. 348KYD

    348KYD Karting

    Jul 29, 2007
    63
    Bedfordshire, UK
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    Nick
    A very interesting write up John, and a bonus Oscar Wilde quote too :)
     
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  19. swift53

    swift53 F1 Rookie
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    Nov 17, 2007
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    Alberto
    I would say sorry to see it go, but obviously you made the right choice.
    Very happy you enjoyed it as long as you have!
    Can always find another :)

    Best, Alberto
     
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  20. Temerian

    Temerian Karting
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    Jun 17, 2014
    164
    Manhattan
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    Rick Temerian
    Beautiful post, John. Thank you for sharing it and Glassman- Get A Life!
     
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  21. francisn

    francisn Formula 3

    Apr 18, 2004
    1,820
    Berks, UK
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    francis newman
    Sorry to see it go John, lovely story of your cars. I will never forget our chance meeting in the middle of France in 2018 on the way back from Maranello.
     
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  22. abstamaria

    abstamaria F1 Rookie
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    Feb 11, 2006
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    Andres
    I am older than you, John, and have seven sports cars, three of which are modern cars. They are too many, I think, but are so different from each other that I can’t think which one I would dispose of when the time came. I would probably sell the modern cars first; the Dino will be difficult for me to sell.

    I enjoyed your posts.John, so I’m sorry to hear your blue Dino is gone.

    Andres
     
  23. Bluebottle

    Bluebottle F1 Veteran
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    Oct 15, 2012
    6,772
    Exeter and Cirencester
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    John
    Thankyou, Andres, you are very kind. I am sorry, too, but I was privileged to enjoy four happy years of Dino ownership, not something to which many people can lay claim, and some wonderful memories. I shall never forget taking my Dino back to its birthplace, driving it around Fiorano (albeit at a leisurely pace!), into the heart of the factory, and out under that iconic archway - something not that many owners have been fortunate enough to have done, I imagine.

    I know exactly what you mean about not knowing which cars to sell. It was the same for me. In the end, I could not make up my mind to sell any of them, so I had to let fate decide for me. That the Dino was one of those which went, was decided by a higher power than me!
     
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