one colour has been globally banned by Ferrari

THEY may be one of the sexiest and most flamboyant – not to mention expensive – sports cars in the world, but don’t even think about asking for a pink Ferrari.

news.com.au

You can have just about every colour imaginable in Ferrari land, but don’t even think about pink. Picture: Auto Italia

IT’S the ultimate in luxury sports cars — noisy, incredible to drive and possibly one of the most gawked-at set of wheels on the road.

But the one thing you will never see come out of the Ferrari factory is one in pink.

“It just doesn’t fit into our whole ethos to be honest,” Ferrari’s Australasia CEO, Herbert Appleroth tells news.com.au. “It’s a brand rule. No Pink. No Pokémon Ferraris!

“There are other colours that aren’t in our DNA as well and they are wonderful colours too but some are perhaps more suited to other brands,’’ he says, ever so diplomatically.

“The most popular colour is still red but we are trying to give as many choices as possible to everyone.”

I’ll take it in red, red or red. Pic: Supplied

I’ll take it in red, red or red. Pic: SuppliedSource:Supplied

While red does make up for around a third of Ferrari sales around the world, it is followed by silver and black with white being a colour Appleroth says is trending ‘upwards.’

“Enzo Ferrari used to say a different Ferrari for every Ferrari-ista, as globally we don’t want two cars to be the same.

“We have invested in our dealerships so each one has a tailored made, personalisation area.”

Of course, if you are spending anything from $400,000 to $2.5 million on a Ferrari you may choose to go elsewhere to have it painted pink once you have driven it out of the dealership. But at this point, there won’t be any pinkies brm-brm-brm-ing out of a showroom anytime soon.

“Every Ferrari is customised, personalised or bespoke,” says Mr Appleroth.

“There are many different levels of personalisation from sitting in the dealership and working through all of your options to the tailor-made progamme where you fly to Italy to the factory in Maranello and sit in the atelier and work out your specifications.

“And there is the one-off program where it starts with the chassis and everything is completed around your specifications. But they are very, very rare. Eric Clapton has one like that.”

Mr Appleroth says the car brand produces an ongoing book with all designs from all over the world so they can see what some of the trends and what some cultures are doing when it comes to design.

Green lawn, white walls, blue skies = fast car perfection Picture: Melissa Hoyer

Green lawn, white walls, blue skies = fast car perfection Picture: Melissa HoyerSource:Supplied

“Like anything in fashion, we push the boundaries and our personalisation programs allow for our clients to basically create a couture car.”

And who exactly are the people buying these extravagant, mechanically masterful fast cars?

“Actually the car industry is booming,” Appleroth explains. “In our space, the ‘super’ car market, it has never been as good as it is now.

“In our segment, the Ferrari world, we have seen a 48 per cent growth in the last financial year. There are number of factors to it, from our economy doing well, there’s a stability in the market and people are doing well and feeling confident about their primary investment, which is usually real estate.

“There are people who have worked hard and think ‘I want to treat myself’ and they also see a car like this as an investment as the cars appreciate simply because they are so limited and all bespoke.”

Kylie Jenner received a Ferrari from her (now ex) boyfriend Tyga during her 18th birthday in Los Angeles in 2015 Picture by: AKM-GSI / Splash News

Kylie Jenner received a Ferrari from her (now ex) boyfriend Tyga during her 18th birthday in Los Angeles in 2015 Picture by: AKM-GSI / Splash NewsSource:Supplied

While a half million dollar fast car is a mighty big treat-to-self, Mr Appleroth thinks Australians are maturing when it comes to buying ‘luxury’.

“Maybe 10 or 15 years ago luxury was thought of as a bit of snobbery,” he says. “But I think people like to reward themselves now and look up to those who have done well as opposed to the tall poppy thing where we were always ready to cut down anyone who has worked hard for what they’ve got.”

Either way, ‘the Ferrari family’, a term Appleroth has given to Aussies who are in the F-club, turned out in force in Canberra on the weekend at an event that was an ode to all things Italian and car-like, Auto Italia.

A sea of red: Ferrari-en-masse in Canberra for the Auto Italia car show Pic: Melissa Hoyer

A sea of red: Ferrari-en-masse in Canberra for the Auto Italia car show Pic: Melissa HoyerSource:Supplied

Held on the lawns of Old Parliament House there were hundreds of Italian cars at the public event, from the likes of Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Fiat, Lamborghini and Ferrari. Dotted around the lawns and owned by collectors and Italian car enthusiasts the lawns would have never had seen so much car porn in one space at one time.

So, what it’s really like drive a Ferrari:

When the Ferrari dealer handed over the keys to the $400,000 (plus!) Ferrari California T for the weekend test drive to Canberra, I suddenly felt rich. Like, seriously rich. Powerful and successful. OK, I shouldn’t really need a car to tell me that my life is a complete and utter triumph (insert eyeroll emoji here) but hey, this went the right way about doing it.

My little, borrowed friend was red, low-rise, streamlined, well-endowed at the front and bloody sexy.

The fact it can go from zero 100km/h in 3.6 seconds kind of concerned me as I slowly wrangled it out onto a busy and relatively narrow street from its inner city Sydney dealership.

What is it like to drive a Ferrari California T? Here goes . .

What is it like to drive a Ferrari California T? Here goes . .Source:Supplied

But once I was sorted, seat hoisted up, strapped in and the ‘launch’ button pushed, it was hasta la vista baby.

Not being fluent in motorise — I’l leave all that torque to bona fide motoring writers — I have never seen as many people stare in my direction as much as they did than when I was behind this set of wheels. Needless to say, it is a car that requires your lipstick stays glossy and your hair fresh as you feel like you are on show just as much as your wheels are.

Some peeps stare in sheer wonderment at this marvel of motor engineering while a few look at you like you are an indulgent toss.

Which, as someone who grew up in public housing and where humility and self-deprecation was instilled into us from day one and … oh, stuff it. It’s just a superbly brilliant experience and ride.

Zipped into the CBD for some early morning TV, feeling and parking like a rock star ... Pic: Melissa Hoyer

Zipped into the CBD for some early morning TV, feeling and parking like a rock star … Pic: Melissa HoyerSource:Supplied

We (carefully) motored down to Canberra to the Auto Italia event we’d been invited to and while 110km is our MAX Australian freeway speed (which isn’t even a stroll in Ferrari land) I kept the faith, much to the chagrin of my foot, which could smell the lead it was desperate to pedal.

Look, I’m not going to go all motormouth on you, preferring to go the more luxe and style route.

The fact is, this auto gearbox still has the feel and noise of a manual and the leather and stitching is exquisite and there is plenty of room in the boot and the convertible roof is a cinch to get off, with the push of just one button. Aah. it’s a real ride.

Okay, so if I was ever in the site to afford one, would I? Bloody hell, yes. Even if I nearly do my back in each time I limbo-ed into the drivers seat.

*Melissa was a media guest of Ferrari at the annual Auto Italia event in Canberra.

BMW/Mini National Aftersales Conference (NAC) 2017

Again this year it was an honor and pleasure for Races2U to be a part of the BMW NAC in Las Vegas.  Our wonderful sponsor Resolut Marketing again hosted us in their booth, and we really enjoy working with this great team of people.  With offices in the US and Sweden, this company provides digital marketing solutions for some of the biggest automotive brands all over the globe.  This year they were joined by their collaborative partners Thomas Direct, who provide physical marketing materials such as print and promotional items, and there was a great synergy between them.  The amazing people of both organizations as well as all of the other vendors and BMW staff were a lot of fun to work with, and after attending this event the last few years, they are becoming more like friends and family than just another group of people at another event.  The event was again at the amazing Aria resort in Las Vegas, and the elegant 5-star venue could not be a better place to host these wonderful people and automobiles.  We look forward to continuing our relationship with Resolut, Thomas Direct, and BMW/Mini and to returning again next year.

Check out the pictures here: https://goo.gl/photos/r5bYYNMWFC69yM2H9

 

Pedal to the Metal at the Steel Conference

This may be a bit longer than our normal blog entry,  but there were so many interesting things going on at the NASCC conference put on by the AISC (American Institute of Steel Construction) that we just want to share with you.  Please make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom- you don’t want to miss anything 🙂

Held at the Henry B. Gonzalez Center in San Antonio Texas, this 3 day conference was about all things steel- fabrication, construction, design and architecture, testing, and more.  There were manufacturers of heavy equipment, hand tools, bolts, girders, CNC machines, etc…  We were hired by LeJeune Bolt company to act as a draw to their booth at this show, not that they needed us. LeJeune Bolt sponsors the #91 car owned by Team M Motorsports’ Brad and Nancy Mannstedt and driven by Ty Majeski, a rising star in the world of stock car racing.  He and the car were both in the booth, and getting to know this talented and humble young man at the show was a real privilege.  Along with our race track and the real car and driver, the booth was manned by the amazing staff of LeJeune Bolt Company.  You could tell by their interactions with all the other attendees that they were well liked and well respected by their customers and competitors alike, and it was a great pleasure working with them.  By the end of the show, they felt more like friends and colleagues than clients, and it was a great experience for the Races2U pit crew.

 

One of the things we got to do during the rare bits of downtime during the conference was learn about the industry, and the Races2U girls got to play steel workers for a bit using both the Torque and Angle system from our hosts LeJeune as well as a hammer drill from our neighboring booth Hilti Tools.  In this video you can see Skylar  and Erica learning the trade.

One of the other highlights of the show was the opening day party, put on by one of the shows big sponsors, Peddinghaus Corporation.  They really went all out, renting out Howl at the Moon, one of the largest venues on San Antonio’s famous Riverwalk, with a full buffet dinner, open bar, and entertainment provided by none other than the car guy’s car guy Jay Leno.  If that wasn’t enough to keep people entertained, later in the evening we were serenaded by winners of a Karaoke contest who were all incredible, but all paled beside the “ringer” singer who was none other than Roderick Dixon, a professional tenor with so many credits to his name we can’t list them all, but you can read about him and hear him on his website.

Multiple racing corporate events

We could not have planned this better if we tried!  By sheer coincidence, there were two large trade shows in completely different industries that happened to be taking place at the same time in the same convention center that both had a racing theme. This was not the first time that Races2U has set up tracks at the Gaylord Hotel and Convention Center at the National Harbor in Washington DC, but we’re betting it was the first time there were 4 tracks there at the same time!

LKQ Corporation, a large automotive aftermarket parts supplier, was having their annual corporate training March 8-10, and hired Races2U to provide a couple of slot car tracks to provide entertainment for their executives, vendors, and sponsors.  In cooperation with LKQ’s marketing partner Club Colors, we branded the cars and track with their logos, and even created a custom car hauler for them. Our tracks were set up in the center of the exhibit hall, and Races2U pit crew kept the races running smoothly throughout the event.

At the same time, Henry Schein Medical was having their national sales meeting in the adjacent hall, from March 9-11, and their theme was “Need for Speed”.  They had over 2000 attendees and vendors from various medical equipment and supply companies.  Although Horiba did not go all out with renting a large track from us this time around, we were happy to see they did set up a small slot car track in their booth.  Alfa Wasserman purchased a Carrera Go! track to be a part of their booth at the show.  It was good to see that both the racing theme and slot car racing are still a part of this large event 5 years after we first set up a slot car track for them in Dallas.

Whether your event is big or small, and you need racing entertainment for a dozen people or a thousand, Races2U will bring the fun anywhere you need it!

NASCAR racing and delicious BBQ

Races2U just completed another event here in Austin for the Electronic Representatives Association.  It was held at Stubbs BBQ on Red River, home of some of Austin’s best BBQ and live music.  We set up our NASCAR track out on the deck of their event hall, and the weather was perfect!  We created a custom car hauler truck for them, and they were thrilled:

“Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the racing at our conference party, and that was no surprise considering how competitive our members are! You should know that we awarded the ERA truck to our first place winner the next day in front of our entire group of attendees. Thanks so much for everything!”

Tess

Let Races2U go the extra mile for your next corporate event!

Huge lot of lightly used Carrera items now in store

We recently received a consignment of many great, lightly used Carrera items, most of which still have the original boxes and manuals.  It’s a great opportunity to expand your track or car collection at less than retail prices.  Some of these cars have become collectible, and won’t last long on our shelves.  Come check out what we have in store- at these prices, they won’t last long.

Chicago in January? Why not?

Races2U was recently hired to set up a couple of slot car tracks at Flexera Software’s annual sales meeting in Schaumburg, Illinois, a large suburb of Chicago.  At first we were a little nervous, as a Texas based company, most of our personnel don’t have much experience with the harsh winters of the Great Lakes.  As it turns out, the weather was wonderful, and we were really warmed up by the great reception we received. We were working with the fantastic event planners from Plan On It, and they did an amazing job of putting on this multi-day event for this international Fortune 500 company.  There was delicious food and drink, and of course our racing was a part of the entertainment.  It was really a privilege to entertain so many great people from all over the world, and we had racers from England, Italy, France, India, and more.  It was almost like attending a real Formula 1 race with the international crowd. A big “Thank you!!!” to our wonderful hostesses Lynda and Teresa and the rest of the Plan On It staff, and all the participants from Flexera who raced with us. Our tracks were sponsored by KPMG, and you will note their logo appears all over the track as a thank you for their sponsorship.  Of course, we couldn’t have done it without the help of our two amazing “Pit Crew” track attendants, Cierra and Teresa, who kept the races running smoothly.

Happy New Year!

We are open today, Jan 1 2017, until 6pm.

Track setups

For those of you who bought a slot car track from us for the holidays, here are a couple of videos to help you set them up.

For Carrera: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcR42iwF_s0&feature=em-subs_digest

For Scalextric: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDMTQU0eep8

Thank you for choosing Races2U!

Last minute shopping

It’s still not too late to have a slot car track running around your Christmas tree tomorrow morning.  We still have a few in stock, and many of them can be set up in 30 minutes or less.  Prices start at just $149.  We will be open from 10am to 4pm today.  Closed Christmas day.