The first thing I had to do was make my way across to the other side of Silverstone (near the Stowe circuit if you’re familiar with the layout) where the Porsche Centre resides. Here there was an evening’s entertainment planned for lots of motoring journalists involving all the facilities from the kick plate and ice hill to the Human Performance Centre.
Anyway, at the end of the evening for reasons I won’t bore you with I was given a hot lap ride in what I suspect is currently the UK’s only GT2 RS. Now, a passenger ride is not necessarily something I get overly excited about these days. I don’t mean to sound churlish, but I generally want the full picture – I really rather want to drive the car because… well, just because. I hope you understand.
Anyway, it was painted all black (the bonnet with its very cool sticker badge is actually naked carbon fibre but obviously looks black, albeit slightly matt) looked very menacingly cool and I was intrigued to see what it would be like. I hopped in the passenger seat and said hello to Gordon Robertson who is the very friendly chief driving consultant at the Porsche Centre. He used to be based up at Knockhill so clearly likes tight and twisty circuits and I suspect that the evening’s rain soaked tarmac wasn’t exactly an unfamiliar surface either. But familiarity or not, what Gordon did next was extraordinary.
He sat very close to the Alcantara wrapped steering wheel and then proceeded to delight in tackling pretty much every corner as sideways as possible. We started out by heading onto the sinuous low-friction infield circuit where Gordon skilfully linked all the corners by transitioning gracefully from lockstop to lockstop. Then once he’d ‘got the tyres warm’ we went onto the main handling circuit and just drove monstrously fast. His clear favourite was a long cresting third gear right-hander that is completely off-camber. It also has a blind entry so it took me completely by surprise when he first bunged the RS’s nose in early and hard and then lit the turbos so that we were completely sideways long before clipping the apex. The fact that it was almost certainly emitting a bluey-orange flame from the exhaust at the same time is almost too brilliant for my boyish excitement to bear.
It would have been a deeply impressive display in a Carrera S, but in the GT2 RS with 611bhp and lightly treaded Pilot Sport Cups it was unforgettable. When the torque hits you it is head-swimmingly fast. All the clichés about fairground rides and runaway trains thumping into you really are appropriate… it’s that fast. Despite this, and admitting that you have to have pretty snappy reactions to catch it, Gordon said it’s actually more driveable than the standard GT2. I certainly never drove quite like that in a standard GT2 so I’ll happily take his word for it…