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27 ottobre 2020

Kevin M. Buckley, Gordon Sorlini

Ferrari owners around the world tell how they enjoy sharing their passion for the brand with their beloved pets

Yvonne McCarty likes taking one of her best friends, Ivy, for rides in her Ferrari. In her California, Ivy sits on the back seat. “However”, says Yvonne, “in the Lusso we have made a bed in the back for her”. When parked, Yvonne leaves the boot up. “And she will sit up watching me go. And looking for me to return”.

Sounds a bit harsh for an eleven year-old perhaps. But then, 'Miss Ivy' is a beautiful Soft Coated Irish Wheaten Terrier. Offspring of pedigree champions in Europe and Australia, she even visits the race track. “She is not bothered by the noise”, insists Yvonne. “She is as happy as Larry!”

This wonderful Irish breed also has one crucial car-friendly feature: “Her coat, being wool, has no smell”, enthuses Yvonne. “She sheds no fur in the house or the car".

Over in England, owner Gary Redman is less fortunate on the dog-hair front. His four-legged passenger “moults a heck of a lot”, he admits. Wife Lisa rightly complains. “So I do have to hoover out the hairs when he’s been for a ride”, he concedes.

The passenger is Barney, a British Bulldog with a fixation with Gary's Ferrari Portofino. “As soon as I open the passenger door he’s in there”.

A seatbelted dog riding shotgun may look unusual, but we are talking about some 25 kilos of solid canine. The fifty-something CEO and founder of NewCareers Recruitment Specialists has owned a wide range of Maranello’s modern creations, including a California T, a 458 Spider, an F12 70th Anniversary, and a 488 Pista Piloti.

Out and about in the Portofino, Barney usually provokes a positive response. “People look because it’s a Ferrari. Then they do a second take because of the dog”, smiles Gary.

Meanwhile, over in Amsterdam, Frank Boon likes nothing more than driving his Ferrari 458 Spider, roof down, with a female companion sitting alongside.

At their restaurant destination, ever the gentleman, Frank walks around the car to graciously open the door for his passenger. And out springs a pretty little Jack Russell. It provokes a lot of smiles from observers. “Yes”, he laughs, “they’re expecting a lady in an elegant dress to step out. Instead, out hops little Joep!”

Nine year-old Joep - pronounced ‘Yoop' - goes everywhere with him, quietly sitting on her own fleece blanket on the restaurant chair booked for her.

But doesn’t such a feisty breed cause problems when Frank is at the wheel? “She is a Jack Russell”, he says, “but she has the temperament of a Labrador”. The first time in a tunnel though, “she got spooked when the exhaust bounced back off the walls”, recalls Frank, letting out one of his infectious raucous laughs. So now he switches from ‘race ’ to ‘sport’ mode.

But there is one unavoidable question: has Joep ever disgraced herself inside the car? “No no, never” roars Frank. “She has never soiled the car!” Vice President at PvH Heritage Brands Europe – formerly managing director Tommy Hilfiger The Netherlands – Frank's Ferrari experience began when he strolled into the Kroymans dealership in Hilversum around six years ago.

“As soon as I walked in there, I knew I had to buy that Ferrari”. It was a 430 Spider in Grigio Silverstone. His current drive is a 458 Spider, also in Grigio Silverstone. Has Joep ever visited the dealership? “Oh yes, the folks at Kroymans love her”.

In northern Australia, Luke Nugent has two English Bull Terriers, nine year-old Stella and Lilly, seven months.

He bought his first Ferrari in 2018 – a Superfast 812 – that caught his eye in a Melbourne dealership. “I walked in to have a look and walked out that day with my name on the car”.

A track day at Philip Island led to him then buying a 488 Pista Spider at his local Gold Coast dealership. “The Pista is the best thing by far I have ever driven. I love the looks, especially the Pista Spider”.

His dogs have taken well to his passion for Ferrari and Stella has been out in the Superamerica. “I took her slow, she looked like she enjoyed it. She’s got big paws and she likes to put them on the dash”.

Over in Dubai a French Dwarf Poodle by the name of Dolce has merged nicely into the motoring habits of owner, Clint Wilfred, whose favourite drives are in the Italian Dolomites and in Oman.

What attracted him to this breed of dog was simple: wife Sabrina “had always wanted a poodle”.

Both wife and children have taken to Dolce, and he in turn has taken to Ferrari, going for a ride “most weekends” in the Portofino when desert roads offer plenty of open space to enjoy that unique Ferrari sound.