PRANCING HORSE - YARRA VALLEY
Driving fast cars and tourism have never gone hand in hand so well until now. Moving around the Ausralia throughout the year, Prancing horse's Supercar Drive Days are designed to give enthusiasts a chance to experience a region while living out their supercar fantasies.
My tour starts early in the morning, with couples meeting at the iconic Balgownie Estate in Victoria's Yarra Glen. Gleaming in the carpark are flawless examples of a Ferrari 458 Italia, Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 and an Alfa Romeo 4C. All unique in their own right, the day promises drivers a healthy workout in each vehicle. The experience, which is created for groups of two, allows both to interchange between the passenger and driver seat at various, picturesque stops along the day.
First up, I get the key to the Ferrari and it was like liquid dark chocolate; smooth, sexy and sophisticated. Despite my fears of inexperience, it was a dream to drive. From the easy-to-use paddle shift to a simple display system, it was the perfect vehicle to ease me in to the Supercar world.
Prancing Horse staff in a customised Alfa Romeo Giulietta lead the way and we're all in contact via two-way radios. We're alerted in advance to oncoming trucks, sharp bends and even speed cameras (your licence is taken on booking so you speed at your own risk).
After a short morning tea, we swap cars and up next was the Lamborghini. Somewhat psychotic and thrilling at the same time, it was nail biting taking corners through the infamous Black Spur. Unsure of whether I'd spin out of control at high-speed, the Huracán had a particularly confusing (albeit cool) dash system.
A late lunch was had at Innocent Bystander, known to serve up some of the best produce in the Yarra Valley. Croquettes, slow cooked lamb and woodfired pizzas were served up family style with the group grazing and connecting over the day so far.
Rolling back to the fleet, full from our gourmet feast, it was time to drive the last car of the day, the Alfa Romeo 4C. Completely shredded of any extras, it was like climbing in to a deluxe go-cart. It took off like a rocket and hugged the curves of the road. It felt dangerously powerful and was loads of fun.
Our last stop of the day was at the Yarra Valley Chocolate Company where we parked out the front and created a fabulous spectacle. The unbranded cars give the driver a feeling of ownership, with passers by pulling out their phones for a photo. Walking back to the Alfa (chocolates in hand), taking the key out of my pocket, it was a thrill to give the illusion the 4C was mine (if only for another few minutes).
It's this feeling that separates Prancing Horse from other drive day companies. There's no bond taken on booking (one can only imagine the insurance premiums). The only ones in the car are you and your plus one. You feel like the car is yours for the day. An exhilarating way to spend time with someone special.
COST: Drive Days start from $1990 AUD per couple.
WHAT YOU GET: The package is an all inclusive 200km journey with morning tea, lunch and insurance starting at 9:30am and finishing at 5:30pm.
GOOD TO KNOW: The day is designed for a couple, or one driver and one passenger. Hotel packages can be arranged. Prancing Horse travels around Australia throughout the year with packages available in NSW and Victoria.
I experienced the Supercar Drive Day courtesy of Prancing Horse.