Ferrari Panamerican 20,000 - the final stint
A 20,000-mile journey from Brazil to New York came to a successful end on Friday, 17th November, when the two Ferrari 599 GTB Fioranos crossed the finish line at the New York Stock Exchange. The 15-leg journey took a team of 48 journalists, driving by turns, from Belo Horizonte in Brazil to the Argentinian pampa; over Andean plateaus and through mountain passes some 13,000 feet above sea level; through the Central American tropics and across Mexico and the US, with a last stop in Canada before reaching the final destination in New York. We last left the team in Wahington DC; here's how the teams fared after heading via the Niagara Falls to New York...
Detroit, 11th November 2006 - The ferries aren’t running as the waters are too choppy today, so to reach Detroit the cars leave Chicago driving around the lake to enter the state of Michigan. One of the world’s most important cities when it comes to the manufacture of cars, Detroit deserves a day’s stopover for the team, before leaving for Canada.
Toronto, 14th November 2006 - The two Ferraris stop for the day in Toronto. The city’s Italian community numbers around 600.000, consisting of immigrants and their children, and before leaving for Niagara Falls the team drives through Little Italy to greet the Italian community.
Buffalo, 15th November 2006 - The Niagara river is short and carries water from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. The Falls themselves, of course, are spectacular: while one part is on the American side the other one is on Canadian soil. The river Niagara also forms the border between the two countries and the shores belong to the USA and Canada respectively. Those who wish to enjoy the falls should be prepared to get wet, as the falling waters create a steady dew – even the two 599 GTB Fioranos get wet.
New York, 16th November 2006 - The Ferrari Panamerican 20,000 Tour has reached its final stage. As the cars leave for the last leg it starts to rain and doesn’t stop until the Ferraris arrive at their destination. To cross the border from Canada into the US, the team has to wait for four hours but then they drive on and pass the huge bridges on both sides of the Niagara River to reach the highway, which leads them to New York. It's evening when the engines are turned off in front of the hotel next to Central Park and the team feels slightly sad that this splendid experience, this unrepeatable adventure, has come to an end. The following day will see a final ceremony with a press conference, cocktail party and a huge celebration…
17th November 2006 - On Wall Street, the façade of the Stock Exchange is decorated with the Ferrari trademark: the prancing horse. A special grandstand has been built for the ceremony, and Maurizio Parlato, President and CEO of Ferrari North America, is on hand for a celebratory speech. For over 50 years, the United States has been Ferrari's number one market and many of its customers are members of the American business communities. In his remarks, Mr Parlato emphasises that the cars have proven their extraordinary reliability, having made it though the rugged Andean roads with minimal damage to the tyres and rims. The only thing they’ve needed were regular oil changes, provided by Shell.
Text: Classic Driver
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