Sporting Pleasures Felix Wong

“There’s a sports car out there with its top down,” remarked a Fort Collinser to his kid standing behind me inside the diner I was having lunch at. “Someone’s thinking positive…”

Er, yes, that would be me. While I have enjoyed the unusual snowy weather the last few weeks, I’m looking forward to warmer days. In just a couple of days the high temperatures of Fort Collins will be in the mid-50s, which should feel absolutely scorching after weeks in the 20s and 30s. Never mind that when I drove out to lunch, the temperature was still 17 degrees and there’s still some snow on all grassy areas.

No matter; the sun was out, and to paraphrase a wise man, “it’s never too cold; you just aren’t wearing enough.” So after throwing on a fleece headband and donning my warmest car coat, I hopped in the MGB and off we went.

Well, sort of. Goldie was a little recalcitrant in starting considering that I haven’t driven her in three weeks and the garage was quite frigid during then. But after a couple of minutes, she awoke. In a couple of minutes I was strumming through the remarkably precise gearbox with an amazingly rhapsodic exhaust note behind me.

Sometimes I forget how it is to be in a “proper” sports car. While the Alfa Romeo Spider had evolved into something of a sports-tourer over its product cycle (even given power steering!), everything about the MGB is more direct. Suspension, stick shift, steering… oh, the steering. Much more quick-ratio than the Spider’s. Despite having less power than the Alfa, the MG seems a bit more responsive off the line. Her engine is a torque-monster for something just 1.8 liters in displacement.

The quick backcountry jaunt reminded me how much I love to drive the car. I still haven’t decided what to do with her (the last year or so I’ve been thinking a car that can take me into snow country would make more sense), but in the meantime, here’s to warmer days ahead and positive thinking.

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