Three life-changing words: New York City.
18.09.2023 - 14:53 / forbes.com
The adrenaline rush of driving supercars at high speeds on public roads just hits different.
After many years—dare I say, decades—of doing this as part of my job, that realization hit me just recently. I was driving a Tweety-Bird yellow, 2022 Porsche 911 GT3 on Utah’s windy Route 35. We’d just started to climb toward Wolf Creek Pass, which tops out around 9,000 feet between the hamlets of Woodland and Hanna, Utah. The roads were damp from recent rain as we ascended into the cloud layer on this superb stretch of asphalt, one I’d driven many times before in my own 911 Carrera 4S.
The Porsche 911 GT3 is powered by a 4.0-liter, naturally aspirated flat six with 502 horsepower. This version features the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic (a.k.a. PDK) transmission with paddle shifters. To paraphrase Carroll Shelby in the film Ford v Ferrari, “There's a point at 9,000 RPMs (the 911’s red line) where everything fades. The machine becomes weightless. It disappears.” That’s also when the adrenaline hits.
“Adrenaline, also known as epinephrine, is a stress hormone. An adrenaline rush can feel like anxiousness, nervousness, or pure excitement as your body and mind are preparing for an event,” according to WebMD. As part of this preparation, the body sends a rush of blood to the muscle groups that need it most for a fight-or-flight response. Naturally, the legs get a big dose. This is essential when mountain biking or skiing, and you hardly notice it because the legs are so engaged. When driving, however, the legs are more relaxed. Indeed, high-speed driving, whether on track or public roads, requires it. This creates a unique sensation in that the legs are flush with blood from the adrenaline boost, but it’s essentially a miscommunication. Leg muscles are not required, as there is 502 horsepower at the flick of a toe, so you just feel this rush of blood into your quads as you’re hitting red-line shifts. There’s nothing else like it.
Of course, this response is heightened on public roads due to the added risk of law enforcement (if exceeding the speed limit, which I certainly was not).
The Porsche 911 GT3 was the first of three supercars I drove as part of the Xtreme Xperience Open Road program. The company started with track-based supercar experiences, where you drive with instructors on racetracks at 33 different locations throughout the US. More recently, the company exported the track program to destinations in nine states including Park City, Utah. This particular program starts and ends at the Montage Deer Valley, which is perhaps the best resort hotel in the area and a compelling reason to visit on its own. There are a range of packages to choose from. The half-day package starts at 8:30am and wraps up
Three life-changing words: New York City.
Burned out, stressed out, and laid off in New York City, I could feel it was my time to leave. After making the decision to go full-time freelance, I also knew it was now or never to fulfill my dream of living in Europe.
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