My passion grew over years.
My Dad says it all started when I was 4. Watching a motor race on our black and white TV. I singled out this particular car screaming round and could see a black (over grey) horse on its grey side flanks. I was hooked. Years ensued of books, magazines and posters finding out as much as I could and everywhere I went I bought Ferrari toys/models with my mowing the garden/washing Dads car pocket money.
I only ever seen a couple of Ferrari's in the flesh (it was 1970's Northern Ireland after all).
Then for my 17th birthday my Dad arranged with a well known race driver here, Tommy Reed, to take me for a drive in his Dino 246 GTS, "the very car below" that I was fortunate to meet up with again in 2010.
That drive completely solidified my passion for Ferrari and my Dad became an even bigger hero to me, something I didn't think possible, it was so so special to me.
It would be 1999 before I actually got to own a Ferrari. Owned by an absolute Gentleman, Mr Vincent Pumo of Eurospares in the UK. I was talking to him and his son James (another gentelman) about parts for a Mondial as I was of the opinion the only way I was ever going to own one was by restoring one. I can only think that Vincent felt my passion because he offered me his Mondial for an unbelievable price, which I still couldn't afford as I was about to get married. My about to be Wife sat me down and simply said, "lets speak to the bank and go get it. if you don't do it now you never will". It simply would never have happened if it wasn't for her.
We got the night train from Glasgow to Halstead with me not sleeping a wink because my heart was beating so loudly. We were lifted at the station in Halstead and I don't remember any of the journey to Eurospares, my mind was gone by that stage.
I opened the little red framed door into Eurospares, a little bell tingled and announced our arrival, I vagely remember walking past a black car. Vincent greeted my Wife and I with open arms, giving us both the biggest hug of Italian welcome. He pointed at the black car I'd just walked past and said "well what do you think"? I don't mind admitting this, tears started running down my face. 31 years I'd been dreaming about that moment and now it was here. When I looked round My Wife and Vincent were in tears looking at me.
(Vincent and James made me feel very very special that day and its something I'll never forget).
I went to my wedding in that car.
My family comes first but I feel extremely privilaged to say I own a Ferrari.