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Great Roads: N140, Spain

This Great Road was initially published in issue 102 of Total 911.

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Spain is a fine destination for your Porsche. Away from the costas and big towns, traffic is light on the major roads and sparse on the extensive secondary route network.

If having the road to yourself is a pleasant surprise, then an even bigger one is the quality of the Spanish blacktop. Over the last two decades there has been massive investment in the highway system, the result being that even obscure routes are wide, smooth and well designed.

It truly is motoring nirvana, a fact not lost on car manufacturers who increasingly use Spain for product launches.

To single out just one of thousands of routes is a difficult task, but we found one 32km stretch that is worth driving, 20 miles south of the French border in the Western Pyrénées. Off the main route between St-Jean-Pied-de-Port and Pamplona, the N140 shows as a yellow road on the indispensable regional Michelin map number 573.

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If you take the west-east direction, the route begins at Auritz Espinal, and the first 7km are fast as the road advances across the Pyrénéan upland over open pastures, before heading through Garralda, the first of five villages en route.

Clear of the houses, a challenging series of uphill bends through a narrow valley brings you to Arribe, followed by several short straights and a couple more hamlets before a fast rising straight lifts you out of the valley to the route’s highest point – 1,040 metres – just after Abaurrea Alta.

The descent to the N140’s largest village, Jaurrieta, comprises several half-mile straights and an assortment of testing bends. Immediately after, the road falls away into a series of tight hairpins. Finally, the valley widens and the road straightens out for the final run into Ezcároz.

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Turn left here for more of the same, or right for a blast through the gorges of the valley floor towards the Pamplona-Zaragoza highway.

Traffic is thin, views are at times spectacular, and there’s plenty to keep the driver busy.

Spain is a long drive from Britain, but you can shorten it by taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander, which is near enough to the Pyrénées to decant you almost directly into the action, and takes no more time than driving across France.

Location: Navarre, north-east Spain

Latitude: 42.695440N, 1.676010W

Length of drive: 32km (20 miles)

Points of interest:
Ancient houses
Views from the summit (1,040m)
Jaurrieta

Food and accommodation:
Parador de Sols del Rey
www.parador.es

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Super Rare 959 Comes Up For Sale on E-Bay

959_ebay-1

Rarely does an opportunity like this come up. A Porsche 959, the all-wheel-drive, most technologically advanced sports car of its day, has appeared on EBAY for sale listed at just under one million dollars.

Only 288 959s were produced, and having never been officially sold in the US, Canepa Design was instrumental in passing “Show & Display” legislation which allowed the 959 to be driven legally in the United States. Canepa Design then modified 959s to meet EPA and California emissions standards.

This 959, number 81, is an official Canepa Generation II 959, this 959 delivers a staggering 640 horsepower with 580 lb-ft torque, while being California smog compliant/legal.

This is a very rare opportunity to own one of the world’s historically greatest super cars. The timeless styling, state-of-the-art systems, and superior driving characteristics made the 959 one of the premiere all-time greatest super cars, and it can be yours if you are the highest bidder.

959 on EBAY

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911 in Motorsport: British GT preview

British GT Championship

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Porsche 911 GT3 Rs will be in action this weekend as the British GT Championship returns with a rather foreign flavour.

The sixth round of the 2013 championship will see the teams take to the Zandvoort circuit, in the Dutch sand dunes 30km (18 miles) outside Amsterdam.

Two one-hour races will be held over the weekend, with Oman Air Motorbase looking to consolidate their fifth position in the points table with drivers Ahmad Al Harthy, and Porsche stalwart Michael Caine.

The duo will be looking to bounce back after a difficult round five, where a broken tailpipe ignited the rear bumper of their Porsche 911 GT3 R, and with it their hopes of a top-five finish.

Porsche 911 GT3 R Motorbase Rear

Total 911 took a look behind the garage doors at this event; look out for our delve behind the scenes in the upcoming issue 105 (available in stores, and online, from 11th September).

Making life harder for Al Harthy and Caine is the fact neither driver has been to the undulating Dutch circuit before. Despite this, team boss, David Bartrum is quietly confident that Oman Air Motorbase will be able to score a good points haul.

“We’ve got two good drivers who work well together and we’ve got a very well drilled team.”

An increase in weight, thanks to the impressive debut performances of Al Harthy, and Caine’s driver rating, will be a further disadvantage to the Motorbase pair, who will be running 130kg of ballast – 75kg more than the similar Trackspeed Porsches.

Despite the extra weight, in the previous one-hour encounters at Snetterton, in Norfolk, Oman Air Motorbase walked away with a win in race one. They will be hoping that the Netherlands prove similarly efficacious.

East African Safari Classic Rally

Tuthill Porsche’s preparations for November’s Safari Classic took another step closer to completion, as the final batch of their rally-prepared 911s were packed into shipping containers for the six-week journey to Mombassa, in Kenya.

Tuthill Porsche 911 Safari Line Up

Two ex-world champions will compete for Tuthill. Björn Waldegårds the event in 2011, while Stig Blomqvist will also take to the start ramp in a Tuthill Porsche 911.

Tuthill are sending a team of over 100 people, in their biggest assault on the rally to date. 44 shipping containers will arrive in Kenya with the company’s name on them, carrying spares, support vehicles, and over 700 tyres.

The rally starts on 21 November, and rounds for approximately 5000km (3100 miles) before finishing on 29 November.

If you would like to find out more about the man behind Tuthill Porsche, Francis Tuthill, grab a copy of Total 911 issue 99, featuring an exclusive interview the man himself.

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Porsche and Ferrari at Curbstone Track Events September 2013

Despite the popularity of the Radicals during the last Curbstone Event in Francorchamps it was once again the Ferraris and Porsches that stole the show. These two brands claimed over 60% of the starting grid. From the Italian brand everything …

Porsche and Ferrari at Curbstone Track Events September 2013 More news at

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New Model Year, New Porsche Crest?

2014_porsche_crest

The 2014 Porsche models are beginning to arrive at dealerships. The new Cayman’s arrived as 2014 and that began the wave of ’14′ models. Currently, Porsche dealerships have 2014 911′s, Cayenne’s and Panamera’s in stock.

One thing that I noticed on the new models is the Porsche crest. Look closely and you will notice that the 2014 models have a new variation of the Porsche Crest. In years past, the crest was smooth with a glossy finish. It felt silky to the touch. Now the crest features a rough textured surface made up of little bumps. Also gone is the rubber gasket that once surrounded the crest. Now the crest sits directly on the hood. It’s a subtle difference that only a keen eye would notice. 

Some of the very early ’14′s did not  feature the new crest. Our guess is that Porsche needed to finish inventory of the “old” crest before switching over. It looks great since the metal of the new crest is also a bit shinier. Is this the continued modernization of the crest?

Go ahead check it out!

 

 

Photo: 9Magazine

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