Day 7 – Thursday – 19th May 2011

Planner • Traveller • Blogger

Oh bother.

First, however, let me tell you something that happened well before the fantastic four became the supreme six…

In your minds eye, go back with me several days if you will. We wake the morning after our failed Biarritz Casino attempt of the night before knowing that in a few hours we will be aiming to pick up Gino and Kev up from Toulouse airport. It’s also on this day that I realise I have lost my phone! A phone call or two later and its whereabouts are now revealed; it’s sat back in the Biarritz hotel several hours away from where I currently am. Oh shite!

I’m of mixed emotions; massively happy that it has been found but genuinely unsure of whether I’ll actually ever see it again…I plead with the staff to get it sent ASAP to a hotel address in Spain where we’ll be in two days time.
You cannot imagine my joy when this parcel arrives on the last day of our Barcelona stay. And it had arrived and on my actual birthday of all days!

On our away down to breakfast I am presented with yet another pleasant surprise, this time from Kev.

Between us all we get it ate and run to beach to work it off. Don’t be fooled, the beach is literally a couple of minutes walk from our hotel. Done well, done well.

I take this opportunity to txt – something I’ve been without for several days!
Thank you to all that wished me birthday wishes via txt. Here I am responding to you all from the Med! Check out the ship from the Goonies in the background!

The early evening festivities were tonight one of a kind. But not in a way you’ll be imagining…
Before I get to that, check out the balloons and banners the guys had set up in my room. A lovely surprise as were the six Doombar’s Kenners had snuck into the car from the UK! What a great effort.
Could the evening hold any more surprises?

Oh yes…

It was becoming more and more obvious that we were staying in a pretty decent area and a pretty decent hotel. Just before we were ready to head out to the famous La Ramblas, we notice in the reception/bar area a lot of very smart looking people. Upon closer inspection and investigation we’re told that some kind of new member-based exclusive car club is starting and therefore this it’s launch party. When I say exclusive, I really mean so. I ain’t often you’ll see an R8 spider eclipsed in any context (which was also on show) but it was this time.
This is a 1 of 500 Alfa Romeo 8C’s. Something I never previously thought I’d see in the flesh. (I can imagine a friend of mine’s face right now. Special mention to Robbie Withs).

The chief said it was worth 400,000 euro’s!!! I’m pretty sure you can find an equally rare one in the UK for less than 200GBP – Bargain huh! 😉 Still, I’m not allowed to sit in it despite it being my birthday. Oh well.

Finally, there’s just one other “small” thing to mention. Unfortunately not something pictures can do justice, not even words, rather the reality of it there and then…
Completely separate from the local car launch, we note a number of English speaking people at the bar. Too many for it to be anything other than a company gathering of some sort. And it was. I can tell you that 1/3 of the entire Red Bull F1 team we’re lodging in our hotel!!!…………..and here we are conversing with some of them! So having just seen an Alfa 8C 15 minutes ago and now this, well, it was quite an attack on mine and everyone else senses! We spoke with a strategist named Will, a chassis and body guy whose name I’ve forgotten and a girl from Comms. Despite Vettel, Webber and various other management leaders staying in a different hotel, it was still a surreal couple of hours chatting with the people behind the scenes!
Needless to say after we said our goodbyes and “goodluck” to the Red bull squad, we went on and had several more good hours later on with a familiar theme: food and beer 🙂

Bring on the F1 (Friday practice session) tomorrow at Circuit de Catalunya.

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