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Gift an Experience

By Hkapd on 14 Nov 2012

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Buying gifts has always been a hassle as people grow older. Watches, wallets and even iPads are now becoming run-of-the-mill gifts. Usually to make it simple, we just purchase a voucher and let the person who is receiving the gift decide for himself/herself what to buy with it.

Now though, there is another option.

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If material gifts are not your type and you like your gift to be something memorable for someone special or a good buddy, consider gifting an experience instead. What kind of experience? How about piloting a real rally car round a dirt track guided by professional rally drivers?

That was exactly what I received from someone close to me recently when I was down under and man...BEST present ever!

Getting strapped in to the car

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What you get is basically a voucher which you can use to book the driving sessions with the rally school. Pre-requisites are minimal and basically as long as you are aged 16 and above and can drive manual, you are good to go.

What I got was a 2 x 8 laps drive + 1 x Hot lap from the instructors. For an extra 50 bucks, you get to have a video of your own drive in an SD card.

You would need to attend a compulsory drivers briefing where they will teach you some basics such as how to take a corner at the apex as well as the braking points and what are the things to take note of when we are out there.

Now the best parts is that they have primarily 2 different rally cars for you to choose, the venerable Subaru Impreza WRX or the Mitsubishi EVO. Make no mistakes, these are not converted road cars, they are truely specially prepared rally cars with stripped out interiors, roll cage, bucket seats, rally steering wheels, short shifters...etc. Basically, these are the cars that they would use to compete in. Each session here has no more than 8 people and we all took turns to have a go.

Once it is your turn, grabbed the provided hair-net (for hygiene purposes) and helmet, and the guys at the rally school will strap you in.

Now, the instructors here are real RALLY drivers and not your SSDC uncle. The latter will tell you to slow down all the time while these guys kept saying "GO FASTER!". Imagine how much fun is that!

You are limited only to how much you dare to drive, although, be polite before you open up the taps and let the instructors know so they can warn you when to brake. Although its a wide open area, there are still the few trees around.

For me, getting to do that little bit of sliding around on gravel was already a lot of fun. At one point being a little too over confident, I did not turn in enough at a corner and caught some loose rocks and the next thing I knew, I had spun 1 full circle kicking up lots of dust along the way.(Yes, my girlfriend and friends were all laughing at me after that)

The instructor was unfazed though and promptly told me to let the other car pass 1st before asking me to get a move on.

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The hot lap with the instructor was the icing on the cake. They will take you out sliding around and even experience a rally jump at 130km/h! Definitely an adrenaline fulfilling experience!

At the end of the session, you will receive a certificate as memento for the unforgettable experience.

So if there is someone whom you will like to bless, an experience like this can make the best present yet. Heck, if it is me, I would totally buy this for myself first.

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