Sunday Morning. The iPhone weather app promises fog, but no rain. It's raining.
Honestly, is this an issue? Not in the slightest, as embedded deep in my palms is the heavily weighted Emotional Control Unit (Key, to you and I) to the Aston Martin DB11. Finished in Silver Birch - very 007 - we are heading over to Bicester Heritage for the first Sunday Scramble of the year, an event that always delivers the goods.
For those of you that don't know, Bicester Heritage is a venue like no other. Based on a WW2 airfield, the estate still uses the hangars and out buildings daily, the spirit and character kept in tact. It's host to several events throughout the calendar, and none more resplendent than the Sunday Scramble - bringing Modern and Classic Lady and Gentleman Racers together amongst a stunning backdrop.
With a clean car, we set off in an elegant, classy manor with 'GT' mode set on the multi-function squared off wheel. Almost immediately, two taps on the right side of the wheel and we are in 'Sport+' Mode, exhaust flaps open and the DB11 now making more noise than ever before.
Arriving at Starbucks en route, gives me a chance to step out into the grey drizzle of a Sunday in January and wipe down the car from any spray and mud on the road. Living in the Countryside it's incredible just how much mud is on the back roads. - One observation of the DB11's side vents, is that the mud tends to get sucked up into the beautiful louvred vents in the wheel arches, and sprayed out across the doors. A small price to pay for Aerodynamic wisdom and an aesthetic masterclass.
Pulling into Bicester Heritage is always an event. Rain or shine the Home Guard will be out patrolling the perimeter, and the sound of a bygone era can be heard way out on the runway as a Biplane is preparing for takeoff. This is a place where you come to admire not only the cars, but the surroundings. Think Goodwood in the Midlands.
We get directed to the Motor Transport Yard, sitting in prime real estate for the Sunday Scramble. Situated central to the event, and promising spectacular backdrops for photography, we leave the DB11 for the admiring guests of the Scramble and await the second surprise entry.
Hearing it before we see it, the roar of 12 Cylinders comes around the corner and into Bicester Heritage. Finished in the launch spec 'Ming Blue', the gorgeous Vanquish S has made its presence known, thrilling guests with a bass note vibrating the concrete, and a quad tail pipe display sat pretty throughout a prominent carbon diffuser. It's a good looking car.
By this point, two of the three Ferrari F12 TDF's have joined the DB11 in the MT Yard, and are causing quite a stir. The Vanquish S has just added to the frenzy and camera phones and video equipment are being thrown about just to catch a glimpse. Add in the Home Guard doing their routine and the MT Yard has become the place to be on a Sunday morning.
Parked up, a photo opportunity arrises with the GT and Super GT, before a much needed coffee and bacon sandwich at the plentiful outlets around the site. This gives us time to let the public enjoy the Aston's as we head off and look around the Scramble. The AMOC are here, Abarth, Porsche and BMW - all with classics through to their newer models. Planes litter the runway, and the eclectic mix of characters and cars are strewn throughout the venue, each with their own idea of what makes this place great.
An incredible event, and even more incredible to get the reception that the DB11 and Vanquish S received throughout the day. These cars really are impressive, and to think that amongst three Ferrari's F12 TDF's, Three McLaren 675LT's and a whole host of classic vehicles, by far the most engaging were the two British smoothies.