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08 Jun 2016

Club night - favourite cars fiasco

What went wrong with the favourite cars club night ?

Phil Graham reports on the evening’s entertainment:

After countless days of glorious sunshine, the heavens opened on the day of the R5 Favourite Car Competition. So, with the prospect of a wet evening and reduced numbers, I decided to bring along an extra car (Nette’s 997 Carrera 4 GTS cabriolet) to boost the numbers. This GTS was the first to arrive at the Deanwater and, with blue skies returning, I drove with the top down confident of a good night. Colourful entry sheets, bags of prizes courtesy of Porsche Centre Wilmslow and Mr Crosby’s marking spreadsheet on the laptop - things were looking good.

Just time to nip back home and collect the 911 50th Anniversary to complete the show. Car keys were swapped for a camera from the boot of the GTS, then a sinking feeling as I realised I had locked the car with everything in it including the keys. Due to an earlier mix up of keys this feeling quickly turned to panic, as it seemed that the spare keys were also safely in the boot.

With the top down and the car locked the simple solution is to reach in to open the door and pull the boot lid lever, but this only activated the alarm and increased the stress! Remaining positive, Porsche Assistance was called in the hope that they could avoid a Favourite Car Fiasco before the majority of members appeared.

The AA arrived, but this problem was new to their man Carl; after an hour of phone calls and internet research he decided that a transporter was necessary to take the car home and wait for a lock-picker the following morning.

Meanwhile, everyone else enjoyed the fine evening looking at the cars and chatting. Graham Marginson provided a welcome distraction with his BMW I-8, later swapping it for his new crowd-gathering Ferrari 488. The last few people stayed until 11.30pm, with still no sign of the recovery vehicle.

All credit to the AA, Carl continued his research to determine how to unlock the gear lever from the park position to engage neutral, thus making transportation easier.

As the Deanwater Hotel closed its doors, Nette and I had to sit in the Anniversary 911 and wait - mysteriously the passenger footwell revealed the spare GTS keys! So after cancelling the recovery and feeling even more embarrassed, we headed home. Profuse apologies to all for not delivering the event.


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