Finally purchased a 328 - my first Ferrari
December 23, 2013 - 3 days short of a 3 year search, I found my 1987 Ferrari 328 GTS Red/Tan 2 owners and 26K miles.
I know the date as I found my first e mail bid dated December 26, 2010 on a beautiful Red 1983 400i. The 400i is still a favorite of mine, however the 328 has always been my true love and passion.
Besides being one my biggest purchases, financed with a lifetime of savings from my full time job, two part time jobs and some additional assistance, buying a Ferrari was an experience like no other. The people, the stories, unique and like no other purchase. I could write a book about my adventures and below are some highlights.
In the end, the car became, secondary to the people that I have met along the way. In today’s mute world of texting and transient relations lacking trust, I have been blessed to meet so many wonderful people and developed close relationships and friendships that are certain for years to come. In fact now that I am done I want to start again, but it may be best to give everyone a break, lol. My purchase would not have been possible if it weren’t for a lot of teaching, help, and patience from so many, most notably:
Tim Stanford (Tim Stanford Foreign Cars, 287 SW 33rd St, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315 (954) 764-7824), I have to thank Tim the most; if not for him I would have not bought a Ferrari. He has been patient with me about my obsessions and preoccupations. Even after an initial PPI on the car I purchased, I just did not feel comfortable without having him review it. He has become both my Ferrari Godfather and Consiglieri. With a lifetime, devoted to Ferraris and such incredible passion Tim and his brother Tom are not simply great mechanics but artists who bring people joy by making Ferraris sing. Thank you gentleman!!!
Eugene DiDonato, my brother who relentlessly combed endless ads and counseled me. He was an invaluable help in the purchase and servicing of my car. He was the one who introduced me to cars at a young age and my passion has never stopped. Without his help my dream of owning a Ferrari would never have become a reality.
Nader Khaled (Autohaus Unlimited, 1830 E 3rd Street, Tulsa, OK 74104 (918) 592-1607 Autohaus Unlimited, Tulsa, Oklahoma), owner of a great auto shop who did a PPI for me on Saturday even though his shop is normally closed! He is an honest, passionate owner of Autohaus that services Ferraris and Exotics in a meticulously clean and organized shop. Nader has a small crew including Toby, one of his great mechanics. I will never forget Nader’s generous gift of an antique Ferrari key chain from his personal collection. Even Nader brother Ned helped with my purchase.
Ron Greco, a great friend and fellow chaser, as a salesman traveling all over the US, he was able to inspect and drive several cars across the country. A car guy he and I have been through so many adventures, even going as far as risking his life. After driving a 308, I asked Ron to and check out a noise in the rear. As I followed on the highway, I noticed the rear wheel wobbling which almost come off as he pulled onto the shoulder… the owner forgot to tighten the lug nuts on one wheel he changed, luckily nothing happened.
Douglas Nelson, an ASE Master Technician and Automotive Instructor and colleague at the career and technical high school I work. Doug, another great friend, served as a fellow chaser on local inspections, and not only answered my questions during the day but at all hours of the night by text, phone and e mails during my search.
Tim Scheller, (401-Restos - Custom Restorations, 2234 Flat River Rd., Coventry, RI 02816 (401) 397-5975 [email protected]), another close friend and one of the best meticulous restoration specialists and car painters in the county, he has taught me so much about paint and has been a tremendous help in my purchase.
Bonnie Morrison, a long time Ferrari owner I met at Cavallino 3 years ago, has become a close friend and introduced me to so many wonderful Ferrari Club members and invited me to many great Ferrari events.
John Tirrell (Independent Ferrari Service, 14 Bristol Drive Unit F, South Easton, Massachusetts 02375 (508) 238-4224 Independent Ferrari Service and Sales | Auto Repair and Dealer in South Easton, MA 02375) a great man with an incredibly knowledge of Ferraris old and new who welcomed me to his incredible shop several times, allowed me to join his Team Pilota in the pits at Watkins Glenn and has shared his knowledge and answered so many of my questions.
Peter Lombardo (Lombardo Motorcars, 2280 Berlin Tpke, Berlin, CT 06037 (860) 438-7958 Unique and Exotic Cars - Berlin, CT Lombardo Motorcars - Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, and Sports Car Sales) helped me look for the right car and in addition to advice, gave me an unforgettable ride in his victorious 355 Challenge Car in a parade on the streets of Watkins Glenn.
Peter Sweeney (Forza, 3 Martha Lane, Gaylordsville, CT 06755 (860) 350-1140 Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini Automobiles Bought and Sold) found a nice 308 for me, however I passed on the purchase. None the less he has been a consummate professional and continued to give me advice and help me find a Ferrari. He is a knowledgeable straight shooter.
Steve Barney (Sport Auto, 7405 Summerfield Road, PO BOX 141, Summerfield NC 27358 (336) 643-9595 Sport Auto => The European Car Specialist ) an unbelievable man, founder of Foreign Cars Italia and even sold cars in Italy, has been wealth of knowledge and has answered questions that no one else could. He sells top notch cars and kept an eye out for the right car for me. Though I haven’t visited his shop he has a small great crew and I look forward to visiting his shop soon.
Dennis “Fuzzy” Spernak (412-298-3923) a legendary Ferrari and Exotic Car Salesman, who I met at Le belle Macchine in the Pocono’s and gave me the keys to a 400 to take for a ride. He has sold Ferraris (and Italian Exotics and Classics) longer than only a hand full of people in the US. He has helped me search and has always been there to advise me. Dennis is a great old school guy, no website, but he does text just call or text him.
Wayne Carini (F40 Motorsports, 464 Portland Cobalt Rd., Portland, CT 06480-1911 (860) 342-5705 Classic and Exotic Cars For Sale | F-40 Motorsports | Car Dealer in Portland, CT 06480 ) With F40 within an hour of my house, a visit was mandatory. Wayne did show me a nice 328, but I wasn’t ready to buy and the price was a stretch on my budget at the time. Nevertheless, we kept in touch and I saw him at several events throughout the country. As big a celebrity as he is, he always said hello, recognized and remembered me everywhere we met. Being a teacher at a new career and technical high school with a state of the art automotive program he has been an inspiration to myself and many students at the school.
Earl Gibbs (North Coast Exotics Inc, 3159 W 68TH ST, Cleveland, OH 44102-5305 (216) 651-5512) I met Earl when looking at a car in Cleveland. He is a no nonsense Ferrari mechanic who gave me the straight scoop on Ferraris.
Cathy Roush (Ferrari Market Letter, P.O. Box 870709, Stone Mountain, GA 30087-0018 (770) 381-1993 Home : Ferrari Market Letter ) Cathy has been so helpful in researching the complete history and providing insights into cars that I was interested in. Plus the Ferrari Market Letter provided priceless information about Ferraris and events across the country. The recently published book, The Ferrari Companion Reader, A Collection of Advice from Gerald Roush on Buying Selling and Owning a Ferrari, from her late father is a must to read and I learned so much from reading it.
Jim Meek (Ferrari Club of North America, North Carolina Chapter), welcomed me to several great events held by the North Carolina Chapter, introduced me to many great people in the Ferrari community and has helped me with my search.
Dave Feinberg (Ferrari Service of Bedford, 19 Tolford Hill Road, Bedford, New Hampshire 03110 (603) 493-1696 Ferrari Service of Bedford ), I met David at Tutto Italiano in Brookine MA and he has also been a great resource during my quest.
Jan (Exotic Car Transport, 1207 E Story Rd, Winter Garden, FL 34787 (407) 654-9949 Exotic Car Transport of Orlando ) arranged the safe transportation of the car to Florida without an issue. They are a great company, and as it was the first time I ever had a car shipped, let alone a Ferrari, the driver Danny was kind enough to call me and update me on the cars trip.
Eddie Fuiza (Fuizas Auto Detailing, http://www.fiuzasautodetailing.com ), I have not yet met Eddie but he is a legendary detailer and I will be working with him to ensure the finish and interior on my car is pristine.
Ferrari Life, http://www.ferrarilife.com/forums has been a great source of information and its members have all been helpful in providing insights, opinions and answers to my many Ferrari questions.
Mary, the lovely lady I purchased the car from what has taken care of it meticulously took care of the car for me for over 20 years.
Last but not least, Carol and Mario Santilli, owners of Marios Risto Bar, 20 Haven Avenue, Cranston, RI 401-942-1009 who have welcomed me back as a part time waiter to fund my passion. If you are ever in Rhode Island please come see me Friday or Saturday nights, but never on Sundays, the restaurant closed so I can enjoy my new Ferrari.
I look forward to years of adventures and meeting many new Ferrari Paisanos! See you at Cavillino
This impulsive Ferrari purchase of yours may reveal surprises. In your case I would have done a muuuuuch deeper investigation on that 328.:crowngrin:
As I'm sure you know, I am just kidding! What a purchase groundwork! I would never have the energy for that.
I absolutely love the 328 and I hope you will drive it like a madman. They are robust and they need little maintenance. Just remember, if I hear about you driving it like a worrying snail I shall personally come over and talk to you about it. You must drive this car hard or trade it in for a Cadillac!
Congrats dom. And I thought I was anal.
I have spoken to Tim and eddy has worked on my cars. Highly recommend them both. Enjoy your car to the fullest
Dom- Great story and hope you really enjoy driving her. If you have not found it already, ferraridatabase.com has a lot of free tech data on the 328.
Good luck, Dom. As a past 328 owner, I can say with great confidence that you bought one of Ferrari's best and most durable cars. Enjoy it in great health!!!
Dom, thanx for sharing your passions and a hearty congrats. Keep the stories coming.
Alright! Another '87 328 going to a passionate owner. Drive often and enjoy it as much as you can.
Thank you all for your replies I can, hope we can meet someday.
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