Monday 20 November 2017

They say that you can never forget the first time

That first tender gear change, the stuttering starts... Shane O'Donoghue and Campbell Spray remember their first loves

Shane's first car

Even as a toddler, I would be constantly pestering my dad in his garage, so it's difficult to pinpoint which car I learned to drive in -- but I believe it was a yellow Fiat 127 when I was about eight or nine.

I was living in England when I passed my test and shared a Fiat Uno with my girlfriend for a while, before buying my first car -- a 1985 Honda CRX 1.5 (the one pictured below isn't my one).

I absolutely loved it, and surprisingly didn't crash given its performance and my lack of experience!

Many years later, a long time after I had sold it, I received a letter informing me that 'my' car was abandoned and would I like to do something about it. It was beyond saving though. A sad day.

Campbell's first car

The first car I drove I crashed into a holly bush in our drive. It was a rear-engined Renault Gordini which my father had been lent after he had gone off a bridge and written off his own much-loved 1954 Riley 11/2 litre RME.

Okay, I was only 10 and it was a pretty stupid thing to do -- though my dad was sitting next to me at the time.

Despite that poor start, I was lucky and passed my test when I was 17, as we lived in very rural Cornwall.

I immediately went out and got my own transport.

It was a Ford Prefect van with three forward gears, no heater and which didn't lock properly.

I bought it for £27 10s, put a number of cushions in the back and it lasted me nearly two years.

The best car I ever had was a Saab 96, which I bought in the mid- Seventies. I loved that car with a passion.

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