Spectre 341 Challenge

Back at the line for my second run, I decide to ramp it up a little. The Spectre officials, quite sensibly, aren't telling anyone their times. But this 911 Turbo has the Sport Chrono package, which, in addition to jacking the torque peak up to 516 lb-ft, also includes an actual timekeeping function. So the next time I leave the line, I start the clock before I pop my foot off the brake.

Dialing up the pace on the second run reveals another diabolical challenge of this road. The problem is not so much the blind corners but the high-speed ones where you can actually see your line. Especially the right-hander at the end of the long straight.

Now, say the 911 will hit about 130 mph up the straight. If the straight ended with a hairpin, that would be tricky. But presumably, if you botched it up, you'd at least scrub a lot of speed first. But the straight instead goes into a wide corner that can be taken at perhaps 90 mph. So if you stay on the throttle a moment too long, if you head into that corner at 95 mph instead of 90, you go over the edge in a hurry.

Back at the top, I stop the clock and check my pace. My time is admittedly ballpark, but it looks like I'm already edging close to the 3:41 Club. I guess that's what happens when you have 500 hp and brakes that could squeeze a smile out of Nancy Grace. And I'm still learning how to get the most out of the car--even with the PDK in ultra-aggressive Sport Plus mode, for instance, you need to shift manually or else the transmission will sometimes upshift early and bog the engine. But mainly, this car makes its massive abilities available to whoever's at the wheel. A monkey could drive a 911 Turbo almost as fast as I can, but a pro couldn't drive it much faster. Marinate on that for a while.

(Right: The Porsche waits outside the Delta Saloon, home of the cheerfully named Suicide Table)

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