I once wrote a weekly column for Autocar magazine about track days. I really loved that scene, taking part on a variety of different days with various organisers, and I interviewed lots of track day attendees during the course of that period. However, like everyone, life moves on and situations change: for me it was a wife, then kids, and all the responsibilities and cash flow issues that go with that.
But track days are an itch that needs to be scratched, and with my previous experience I know just how persistent that itchiness can get. So when my last car died and needed replacing, I knew that its replacement, as well as covering fatherly duties like ferrying the kids to nursery/school, couldn’t be to out of its depth on track. It also had to fit my meagre budget of £2,500. A tall ask.
Ever since a certain motoring journalist spoke of 4WD turbo-nutter rally machines, I knew I wanted to own a WRX or Evo. Being budget restricted, and ruling out saloon bodies as not being practical enough for the family, all that was left was the Impreza Wagon. I started off looking at the Classic Turbo 2000, but these are old cars now with old car issues. So after more searching, I stumbled on RF03, a silver, blob-eyed 2003 WRX with the Prodrive Performance Pack.
Sure, the bodywork wasn’t in showroom condition, but it sat on its original wheels, with no additional gauges on the A-pillar in the fast ‘n furious style. Even the useless double din stereo is original. In short, it was a standard car. But best of all it was up for sale at £2,500. Trip made, a little bit of negotiation completed, and the deal was done with enough money left over to fill the tank with Momentum before heading home.
It would be a further 6 months before any track days were attempted, but then, life has a knack of getting in the way.
By Dai Davies