Roadster Tour de Corse | Part. 1

photography
Apr 11, 2017

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Roadster Tour de Corse | PART 1   (Austria – Lake Garda – Tuscany – Livorno.)

This is the story of my solo roadster road trip, a trip that’s all about the journey and not the destination. A driving adventure, for the joy of driving.

I’ve been traveling for 2 weeks, drove almost 6000 km, passed through 8 countries, and I’ve spent each night in a different place. Without a passenger, on my own. I’ve actually taken out the passenger seat – sorry, no hitchhikers! This saved me 15 kg of excess weight and freed up some much needed cargo space (the little mazda is very sensitive when it comes to extra weight).

Above is the first shot, the first time I pulled my camera out to start documenting the trip. A 1000km from home, in Austria, somewhere near the Slovanian border. Just after a thrilling drive on some pretty steep mountain roads that turned out to be a bit too tough on the rather small mx5 brakes.  The distinct smell of them burning meant it was time for a short stop to cool things down. (not the best way for cooling)

 

 

The car went through a pretty major mechanical surgery before setting off from Warsaw.  The old and worn 5 speed gearbox was swapped for a newer 6 speed matched with a Torsen differential and a lightweight flywheel. I’ve also installed, a new coilover suspension, a sportier exhaust, a new soft-top hood, a rollbar, a bucket seat with harness and finally a fresh set of brakes.

The car has transformed, from a fun little toy,  into a more serious, and involving drivers car, whilst still maintaining that original playfulness. Just what I wanted, well almost, because what’s a great car without a proper road? In order fully enjoy the Roadster you’ll want a smooth winding road, and sadly I won’t find it living in Warsaw, Poland. The center of the country is mostly flat with highly congested roads making it an unexciting place for driving enthusiast. The cars potential is being wasted here, and I really wanted to do something about it. I’ve started searching for the twistiest asphalt I can find.

I think found it.

Tour de Corse “The Rally of 10,000 Corners”. Of “Corse”! The famous WRC stage in Corsica! Breathtaking scenery of mountain landscapes, surrounded by sea, fantastic weather and most importantly the narrow, twisty asphalt across the whole island. I had no doubt, this is Roadster territory.

Now it was just a matter of getting there.

PART 1  is about the drive from Warsaw to Livorno, the Italian port city with a ferry route connecting to Bastia, Corsica.

 

LAKE GARDA, ITALY

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Italy wasn’t very kind to me with its weather. Some of the heaviest rain I’ve seen in a while has caught me high in the mountains.

 

 

 

TUSCANY, ITALY

Happily things started changing when I arrived in Toscany. After a whole day of driving in the rain, it suddenly stopped, in a matter of seconds – from surrounding greyness to the orangeness of the setting sun. What a moment!

 

 

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LIVORNO, ITALY

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>> PART 2.