Thursday, July 31, 2014

Five unlikely epic drives

Before catwalks beckoned, British model and motoring enthusiast David Gandy worked for Auto Express magazine, delivering Porsches and Jaguars to the track for testing. Nowadays, between photo shoots, he reviews cars for British GQ, works as a Jaguar brand ambassador and races cars. He shares his ultimate road trips, from Uganda to Loch Ness, with motoring journalist Jason Barlow 

Ph. Arnaldo Anaya-Lucca (GQ Style Brazil)

 A82, Loch Lomond to Loch Ness, Scotland

I drove this road last Christmas. It’s easy to forget just how spectacular Scottish scenery is. The weather was temperamental but added to the drama, with the mist rolling in over the lochs. I like the long, sweeping roads, with clear sight lines – you can get into a wonderful rhythm.

Car of choice: Jaguar F-type

Rome to Brescia, Italy

Last year I co-drove this leg of the famous Mille Miglia road race with Yasmin Le Bon in a 1950’s Jaguar. This event couldn’t exist anywhere other than Italy. It’s utter madness at times, but as much about the passion of the locals as anything else. The weather was terrible on the first day, but there were hundreds of people lining the route, still cheering after midnight.

Car of choice: Jaguar XK120

Nürburgring, Germany

For petrolheads, this is probably the most famous road in the world, and the most challenging. The Nordschleife circuit is 13 miles long, has more than 70 corners and winds through the Eifel mountains. It has a fearsome reputation. Trying to navigate your way round this place is a real challenge, but in the right car and on the right day, it’s an unforgettable experience.

Car of choice: Porsche Cayman S

Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda

This road is so named for a good reason: the journey should take a day but may take three or more. We took this route on a family holiday to Uganda tracking gorillas – we saw them through the mist when the sun came up. As kids, we were forever being bundled into the car to head off somewhere in Europe. It’s probably why I love road trips to this day.

Car of choice: Toyota Land Cruiser – not the most comfortable vehicle, but indestructible

A131 from Sudbury to Castle Hedingham

This is on the Essex-Suffolk border. As my parents live in the area, I know every millimetre and surface change on this stretch. When you have a relationship like that with a road, it really helps you appreciate a car that has been developed and set up properly. I drove it recently in a Nissan GTR (pictured), which is a car with an enormous reputation but one I’d never really understood before. After driving it along here, on a very wet day, I got it. It’s a hell of a machine.

Car of choice: Nissan GT-R



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