(September 30, 2006)
Having had my Murena off the road for a long time, I *fully* enjoy finally having it back ON the road.
I work in Copenhagen, which is about 25 miles from where I live, and the shortest route is the motorway, which is ... well straight, boring, and full of other cars. :/
I have thus taken to the minor roads, not because it is any quicker, but first of all you MOVE, secondly driving on these narrow, winding roads is a total joy - even at (or below!) the national speedlimits.
The reason is that most bends are visually open (no hedges!, for you UK people ;-) ), so I always know if can cut a corner, or whether there is traffic approaching. This picture is not from that particular place, but not far away, and quite similar: http://www.matrasport.dk/Cars/Murena/Gallery1/Med/dsc_5432.html
The really strange thing is that most days these roads are completely empty, - I may have to overtake (or meet) a tractor - but thats it!
The other day, however, the radio announced that a truck and four cars had collided on the motorway, just near my town, - which is certain to cause complete havoc on the motorway - so a number of other people chose the country roads too.
Immediately in front of me, I had 2 cars and a small (white!) van - behind me, a Toyota something, and RIGHT on his tail was a heavy motocross bike - he was obviously wanting to go a faster, and IMO he was stressing his point a bit too much, but driving so close. The road is however so narrow, that overtaking is inhibited over long stretches.
Before long, the Toyota turned right, and immediately the motorbike shot up to my rear bumper - which I found a bit annoying, especially as I always make a point of leaving VERY good space between a bike and my car.
Then, in a small crossing, where all GPS systems will have you turn left - but any "regular" (as myself) would know that the REALLY bendy and nice roads are in fact to the right, the cars in front of me cleared away to the left. I turned right - and noticed that the bike was following me - so I set out on a mission to create some space between my rear bumper and the bike.
As soon as the "race" began, it was totally obvious that 4 wheels is a lot better than two, so even if he REALLY tried hard -almost touching the ground with his knees in the bends etc, I just left him behind - until more straight road arrived, - where I still stuck to the speedlimit (well, -ish).
Then, on one of these straight pieces, he was approaching fast again, and since I knew I was turning left, right after a small hill, I put the indicator out very early - to make sure he didn't try to overtake just then. Much to my disappointment, he was not indicating - obviously going for the slightly more direct and straight road, rather than my twisty choice.
But then, just before the corner, he changed his mind, and obviously set out to try to catch me... with some success in the first couple of hundred yards - I'm convinced I could see his smile through the visor at one point :-) Then the bends and bumpy road soon had him go smaller and smaller in the mirror again - all while he was really fighting that bike around the corners, and almost lifting his front wheel on the way out of the corners.
Then a car came up to the road, and despite he could clearly see both of us, he pulled out, right in front of me, and I either could brake hard, or go around him - and I did the latter.
However, he was bending the throttle in his japanese box, so by the time the bike arrived behind him, overtaking was more difficult - and I soon lost track of both of them.
Shame really, - I would have loved to exchange views with the biker, when we quite possibly would have joined up at a traffic light at the entry to my town - I'm sure he had just as great a time as I had.
Now, had I driven a modern supercar, then these narrow roads would have been completely impossible to negotiate. and the risk of stonechipping would have kept me off anyway, and any fun driving would have seen me lose my license within seconds.
However, with my 120 bhp Murena 1.9i, I had absolutely GREAT fun, and only briefly did I exceed any speed limits (hush hush) - but my smile exceeded my face to an extent that it is still there.
This is simply the definition of a sportscar. Not a race-car, not a super-car, but a SPORTS-car.
BOY, I love that car !