Ferrari French Quarter Classic, Part VI | FerrariChat

Ferrari French Quarter Classic, Part VI

Discussion in 'Louisiana' started by 134282, Nov 10, 2003.

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  1. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ

    Aug 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Carbon McCoy
    I stood in the pits, my helmet in hand, sweat on my brow. It was a gorgeous day and the sun was beating down on us. Better that than rain. The heat combined with the tight enclosure of a helmet left my head damp with perspiration. I squinted in the sunlight, my eyes searching the track for the yellow Enzo. Everything that was going on, the other cars around me, the people, the revving engines, the cars flying around the track, they were all background noise. I was focused on one thing. And then I saw it. I watched as it weaved itself through each turn, getting closer and closer. It’s such a privilege just seeing this car in motion. I was transfixed by its presence as I watched it round the last turn before coming into the pits. It pulled in then turned to park. I walked over to it.

    Two gentlemen got out. Ray came over. Ray and the driver exchanged words. There was something wrong. I felt greedy just standing there, obviously not doing anything with any intention except waiting. Waiting for a ride. Ray walked over to the car.

    “Are you ready…?” he said.

    “Yeah!” The word jumped out of my mouth faster than it took the synapses to get it there. I did a quick pocket check. Empty; good. I eased myself into the car, ducking so as not to hit my head on the door. After putting my helmet on, I reached up to close the door. It was heavier than I thought. I pulled it down gently but firmly enough so that it would close properly. Ray spoke.

    “We’re only going to cruise; one lap around the track, okay…? There’s a warning light coming on, on the dash, saying that the rear spoiler isn’t deploying and that could be dangerous at speed.”

    Oh, man. I felt bad. But I reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally wanted a ride in that car. I’m ashamed to admit that I hesitated before I said

    “Hey, listen… I don’t want your car to get screwed up; if you’d prefer we didn’t go out, that’s cool… I’d hate to think it got worse ‘cause you gave me a ride in it…”

    “No, no,” Ray reassured, “it’s cool, we just can’t go fast.”

    “You sure…?”


    AWESOME…!!! I’m gonna go for a ride in an Enzo…! WHOOOOOOOOO…!

    I was so excited I struggled with the seat belt for at least a minute. I was pulling on everything that remotely resembled a seat belt, just so we could get going. Finally, belted in, Ray started the car. I could hear the mild, idle rumble behind my head. I was far too delighted to pay attention to the detail of the interior, but I remember seeing carbon fiber. Lots of carbon fiber. I have trouble remember going around the track ‘cause I was so excited, just being in an Enzo.

    I can recall going up the straight; Ray casually clicked the right-hand paddle, upshifting the engine. The shifts were really smooth and the engine was really appropriate. The whole attitude of the car was very civil and that just made me more excited ‘cause I knew it was capable of so much more. The 15 inch carbon ceramic brakes calmly brought the car to slow-enough speeds as Ray dipped in and out of each turn. It’s a drivable car; something you could take to work, if you fancied. A beast in a business suit. It glided around the track, its roar in reserve. Even mild acceleration told you that, if it wanted to, this car could bite. With sharp teeth. And a heinously leave-you-in-the-rearview-mirror venom that begged to spew forth. The exhaust hummed, anticipating an opportunity to eat something. Anything. Just the presence of the car is enough to make any other car think twice. Just being in one is incredible.

    Ray pulled back into the pits, but I was in a fog. I thanked him as we exited the car, but my heart was still in it. I love that car. First a 355, then the Breadvan, then Roland’s F40 LM and now an Enzo. You’d be in a fog, too.

    Track day eventually ended and the Ferrari police cars escorted a majority of the Ferraris back to the hotel. Friday night’s dinner at Louis the XVI was lovely but my mind was still on the Ferraris at the track. Can you blame me…? What would you rather do, eat surf and turf and hob-nob with the Ferrari elite or vibrate on the verge of going deaf as you fly down the straight in the Breadvan…? Dress formal and chit chat about the day’s events or be dripping with sweat as you stagger out of Roland Linder’s F40 LM…? Figure out a way to butter a roll without getting crumbs all over the white tablecloth or cruise around the Grand Bayou Raceway in a Ferrari Enzo…?

    Yeah. That’s a no-brainer.

    However, dinner was eloquent and afterwards, Matt, Ryan and I reconvened onto Bourbon street for a quick tour of the local culture. We needed to go to bed, though; the next day’s concorso would require lots of energy.
    Matt LaMotte likes this.
  2. tifosi

    tifosi F1 Veteran
    Lifetime Rossa

    Sep 5, 2001
    Full Name:
    Tom D
    cool now lets here about bourbon street :)
  3. JOEV

    JOEV F1 Rookie
    Silver Subscribed

    Aug 6, 2003
    Ontario, Canada
    Full Name:
    Bring it DES, bring it.

    Put everything else on hold and keep typing.

    Enough with this ___ teasing! :)

    P.S. Where are the 800 pictures?
  4. Matt LaMotte

    Matt LaMotte Formula 3

    Oct 30, 2002
    A quick tour of the local culture huh!!!! Well I guess if you don't want to comment then I will hold my toungue as hard as it is. The look on you and Ryans face as we strolled up and down that road as we "viewed the sights" was enough for me:). Just think...You two were wanting to call it a night!!! Ryan I hope you didn't mind me dragging you along but I am pretty sure you had a OK time.
    Dinner was amazing and I really enjoyed sitting there to Ted C's story about his F50. I had the luck of sitting with him as well as Mr Carr and his lovely wife. They owned the 288 GTO and were also having a great time as well. The conversation we had through dinner was hilarious and I look forward to next year as well.
    But back to the Enzo. Yes folks I witnessed the entire thing. You could see the anticipation dripping off the guy as he waitied ever so patiently for his chance. As the car pulled of and hit the track I could tell DES was in heaven. Good write up once again. I just want to hear your version of the balcony party.:)

    DES about to get his chance!!!!
  5. Matt LaMotte

    Matt LaMotte Formula 3

    Oct 30, 2002
    Going to the track
  6. johnhoughtaling

    johnhoughtaling Formula 3

    Nov 6, 2002
    New Orleans
    Full Name:
    John William H.
    You missed a good ride Danny.

    About 20 minutes earlier, Ray gave the keys to Monte Shalett, the owner of the breadvan, and one hell of a good vintage racer (he beat Sterling Moss, Dan Gurney, and a host of others in a GT40 revival race many years ago, while driving his Lola T70).

    Well Boy racer Monte, heads out in the Enzo, doing very conservative laps, until Eric VDP in an F40 passes him (in addition to being a former F1 driver, Eric was the Ferrari Factory development driver for the F40LM project- so he knows his way around a track in an F40).

    Well as soon as Eric passes Monte in the Enzo, Monte lost all sense of control and, TOOOOOOOOOOOOOOK OFFFFFFFFF. Eric had the F40 totally sideways between the concrete walls while entering the last turn before his blast down the straight. Monte, was flying, trying to catch him. Most of us standing next to the track were very entertained by these two great drivers in two titanic cars! Those cars were screaming!

    I have a photo of the Enzo entering turn one with the rear wheel off the ground!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (that turn is taken at 115 in my 355, so how fast was this photo????).

    When they came back into the pits, the F40 was smoking from every corner (the owner was in the passenger seat, with a smile so big I thought he was going to break his face.).

    Needless to say Monte didnt catch Eric, but watching him hang on was a great to see!!! Both had the typical racer "explainations". (Monte said he was not going above 6K on the Enzo tach, for due respect to Ray. Eric said he was just playing with Monte.

    I tend to doubt one but believe the other!!! You guess which!

    I just hope our videographers got the show!!
  7. JSinNOLA

    JSinNOLA F1 World Champ
    Sponsor Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Mar 18, 2002
    Denver, CO
    Any word on about how long it will take to get the video out? I cant wait!
  8. richard

    richard Formula 3

    Nov 3, 2003
    Los Angeles
    Full Name:
    Richard Thompson III
    There is definitely a lot of awesome footage, John...between Joe Z. and I (we are putting our heads together on the video) we have some really solid stuff! The rally out to the track as filmed from my car is A+, have a nice clip of you doing an acceleration away....sounds AWESOME :)
  9. Tyler

    Tyler F1 Rookie

    Dec 19, 2001
    dusty old farm town
    Full Name:
    Great stuff, keep it coming!
  10. jordan747_400

    jordan747_400 F1 Veteran
    Lifetime Rossa

    Dec 9, 2002
    Houston, TX
    Full Name:
    *cough* For some reason I dont think you are telling everyone quite everything :)
  11. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ

    Aug 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Carbon McCoy
    LOL, Jordan, that was Friday night - you're thinking of Saturday night... i'll get to that in the next day or so... :)

    John, that sounds like an awesome ride... i, too, can't wait for the video... :)
  12. EVartanian

    EVartanian Formula 3

    Mar 19, 2002
    Sunny SoCal
    Full Name:
    Maybe its just me, but that picture of you getting in the Enzo, helmet in hand, is just a classic, DES. You should blow it up and frame it, maybe in black and white, if thats even possible. That would be great.
  13. HUTCH91TR

    HUTCH91TR F1 Rookie

    Nov 7, 2003
    Charlotte, NC
    Full Name:
    Eric, not a bad idea if i were into photos, but i'm extremely camera shy, so i don't see myself doing that... In any case, you're right, that shot is pretty damn cool... Matt did a helluva job... & next time i see him, i'm gonna strangle him for taking all those pictures of me... :)
    There are more pictures of me on FerrariChat than any and everywhere else in the world, combined...

    EDIT!: (This is DES!) Was doing Hutch a favor and accidentally posted under his name. SORRY HUTCH...!
  14. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ

    Aug 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Carbon McCoy
    Sorry, Hutch... :(
  15. Matt LaMotte

    Matt LaMotte Formula 3

    Oct 30, 2002
    And just think of all the ones I have not posted that you have yet to see:) I wish the pic of you and the Enzo was better quality but I had a crappy digital camera and I figured quantity over quality. I'll send you all the ones of you on Bourbon Street once I find my CD of everything.
  16. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ

    Aug 3, 2002
    Full Name:
    Carbon McCoy
    Matt, actually the grainy-style appearance of the picture makes it look good... No doctoring required... It's a good, no question - it's just a shot of me and that's, well... That's a waste of a picture... You should've taken the picture before i got in the way...

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