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Saturday, July 14, 2012

I started liking sports cars when I was ten and went to an ice skating rink with my friend Will.  He already liked sports cars and he saw a Porsche in the parking lot of the ice rink, and I thought it was cool too. I also had a lot of racing video games and I really liked the cars they had in the games. Then I started to watch Top Gear on TV (top gear is a show that sort of reviews/test sports cars and they do cool challenges) and I thought all the cars were really fascinating.

There was one sports car company that I really liked and still do, it is Pagani.   They have always made amazing cars and they are all made by hand, unlike Ferrari and Lamborghini which are partly made by machine. Also they aren't as big as a company as Ferrari or Lamborghini.

One thing I was really looking forward to on this trip was seeing exotic super cars all over the world. During the trip,  I have seen many cars that I have never seen before like: many Ferraris, a Bugatti Veyron, two Mclaren Mp4-12c's, Maseratis, a Lamborghini Aventador and other Lamborghinis, a few Bentleys and a Pagani Zonda F, Zonda R, and Huayra. I still would like to see cars like: a Gumpert Apollo, a Bugatti Veyron SS (the world's fastest/most expensive production car), an SSC Ultimate aero and Tuatara, and a Pagani Zonda Cinque.

I saw many sports cars during the very first stop on our trip when we were in Los Angeles for a few days, then some in other countries. I would usually see them in showrooms but every once in a while I would see one driving on the street.

One day during the trip I searched "Pagani factory tour" on Google and I saw one that was from a company called Motorstars and they also do Ferrari and Lamborghini factory tours. So when we were in Italy (where Paganis/Ferraris/Lamborghinis are made) we booked a tour that would take us to the Pagani factory, Ferrari factory and museum and a Lamborghini collection (a collection of the first cars Lamborghini made).  I was pretty excited.

On the day of the tour my mom and I went to the Bologna Central Railway Station and met a man named Francesco, and the other people who where taking the tour. Francesco was really nice and I got to sit up front with my mom (there were 3 seats in the front of the van). On the drive there when we got near the Ferrari factory we saw a few Ferraris driving down the road, I was really excited to see them, then when we got there we saw several of Ferraris and 2 Lamborghinis in a parking lot of a place where you could test drive Ferraris and Lamborghinis.

When we were dropped of I went to look at the Ferraris and Lamborghinis. They asked if I wanted look inside one of the cars and I chose the Lamborghini Aventador, so Francesco asked someone to open the door.
After a while they opened it but Francesco told me to go to him and he was standing next to a Ferrari California and he asked if I have ever sat in one and I said no.  Then he pulled my mom aside and he asked her quietly if it was ok if someone could take me for a ride in the Ferrari! I couldn't hear them but I was already pretty sure they would, but then he asked if I ever heard the noise of a Ferrari engine starting up, which I have just not while sitting in one. I was so excited.

The driver started up the engine and it roared. He took me on a 3 minute ride on a freeway, which was awesome!! I still can't believe that I got to ride in a Ferrari.
Then we looked in the gift shop next door and they had a wide range of diecast model cars, but we got some post cards. Then we went to the Ferrari museum and we learned a lot about the history of Ferrari. We saw the first cars they made and that they were owned by Fiat, and that the factory was bombed in WW2 then repaired at the end of the war. 
We saw a lot of F1 cars and also learned that the current F1 engine ways as much as me 80 lbs (42 kilos). We saw many trophies that Ferrari won in F1 races. 
My favorite F1 driver (Micheal Schumacher, who actually is the guy who races cars on Top Gear's track they call him the Stig) used to race for Ferrari and won the most races out of any Ferrari driver ever.
Then we were waiting outside the museum for Francesco and we saw three Ferraris drive by in about 5 minutes! After Francesco picked us and the rest of the group up he drove us over to a place to eat lunch, which was only okay but still food is food. After we ate lunch we went to the Ferrari factory which I saw several Ferraris on the way there, we weren't able to go in the factory we only saw the outside if it, we did see the test track and a red plane (which was the plane that a Ferrari beat in a race and it was the first time a car was faster than a jet, the Italian air force donated it to Ferrari then Ferrari painted it red). Then we went to the place where I wish I lived, the Pagani factory which is a two story about 7 roomed building and when we went inside there was a Pagani Zonda R in the showroom!
We saw some drawings Horacio Pagani (the founder of Pagani) drew of some sports cars. Then we saw the first model cars he made when he was only my age (12 years old)! We also saw the first race car he made when he was 20, it was more like a go-cart. Then we went into the factory which is only three rooms! I don't want to give too much information about the factory but I saw, for the first time ever, a Pagani Huayra!

I was out of my head at this point. I also got to feel some carbon fiber, and I learned that every Pagani is made completely by hand. I bought a Pagani shirt. Next we walked outside and I heard the noise of an engine, but it sounded like a powerful engine. I turned my head and I saw a Pagani Huayra driving down the road!!! 
I got a quick video, then it drove off and turned around and stopped right in front of us to get into the gate to get to the garage of the factory.  I got pictures and a video, and also admired the car a lot--I can't explain how awesome it was to be there in front of a Pagani Huayra, in front of the Pagani factory.

After we got some drinks we went to the Lamborghini collection which had over 1,000 pictures of Lamborghini's history. I saw the legendary cars, the Countach and Miura, the Miura is considered the world's first supercar.
I also got to see some old concept cars, and learned that Lamborghini was a tractor company before they were a car company. 

I met the nephew of the founder of Lamborghini, the nephew's name is Fabio Lamborghini.
There was a helicopter that Lamborghini made and it actually flew, which is hard to believe once you take a look at it.
On the way home we stopped at the Ducati store, but we didn't get anything because we aren't into motorcycles. We were heading home and Francesco dropped everyone off except for my mom and me because we didn't get to our apartment yet. Francesco was about to drop us off at the railway station but we reached our apartment first and it was just sort of cool 'cause we didn't think we would. At the end of the day I was really happy to see so many amazing cars and would do the tour again.

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