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Aan Ferrari F40-video’s geen gebrek op DRIVR. Zowat elke cameraploeg van stand heeft er al ooit eentje voor zijn lens gehad, wat deze back-to-basics review van Henry Catchpole des te genietbaar maakt. In ware Metcalfe-stijl slaagt hij er namelijk in om ons met wat GoPro-beelden en een voice-over écht te laten ervaren hoe het is om met Ferrari’s 40ste verjaardagscadeau (aan zichzelf) te rijden. De inclusie van Dean Smith’s topfotografie maakt het plaatje helemaal af.

Eventually, once Dean has exhausted all possible angles to photograph it from, I decide to go for one last drive. So I clamber over the F40’s jutting, slanting carbon sill and fold myself into the almost go-kart-like driving position. There’s reassurance in the feel of the Sabelt straps squeezing down on your shoulders as you clip them in individually and tighten to suit. Twist the key, listen to the whirrings and, once they’ve stopped, push the starter button. The engine starts easily and you feel the car jig and jerk beneath you as the hydraulic suspension at each corner rises and then settles awkwardly like a camel getting up from the ground and then kneeling back down. Move the silver ball across towards your thigh and back for first before setting off up into the mountains, now empty again just like they were this morning.

It’s one of the best 15 minutes of my life. It’s physical and involving and awkward and rewarding all at once. And though I feel like I understand the car and feel confident enough to drive it hard, there are still moments when it is magnificently intimidating. Moments through quicker corners, for example, when the chassis is loaded and the engine is climbing through that transitional 4000rpm and I realise I’m holding my breath…

[Text: Henry Catchpole for evo magazine, Photos: Dean Smith]