38 since Aug ‘05
Manufacturing Technician for a well known USA multinational Company.
S.E. corner of Ireland
Married with 2 daughter’s & a “bump” due in October ‘05
What cars do you drive and why?
1. Alfenia: 2000, 2.0L T/s AR 156.
Why: I fell in love with her dark looks, seductive lines, & sexy alloys. Now that she is going well she makes me smile, once she’s above 3000 rpm. BTW: I got her €3g’s less than market price.
2. Scoobie: 1998, 1.6GL Impreza.
Why: Well being a rally fan I hold Impreza’s in high esteem. Even a 1.6 has great handling & brake’s really well, 2 very important qualities I seek in a car. Scoobie is under-powered for sure but a talented driver, like me, can make up such minor details.
My previous cars in order of buying:
Fiat 127 903cc, Nissan Cherry 1.2, Peugeot 309 Diesel Van 1.9, Nissan Sentra 1.5, Toyota Corolla 1.3 LE, Toyota Sprinter 1.6GLs, Toyota Carina II 2.0L Gli, RS Mexico fitted with a 2.0L ohc engine……. almost a rally car
, Sierra 1.8TD, Jetta 1.6D, 205 1.6Gti, Lancer 1.6 Glxi, Mitsubshi Lancer 1.6 Mivec, Impreza 1.6Gl x2.
Are you a real passionate for Alfa Romeo?
I’m a recent convert to owning an AR but have lusted for a 156 for approx 5 years. I almost bought a 156 in 2001 but then I moved to live in the USA for 2 years.
What or how started your passion for Alfa Romeo and…
- As a teenager I admired Alfas but no-one I in my family would by one coz of all the rust & electrical issues. Closet I got to one was a spin in a friend’s Fiat 128-3P.
- A good friend of mine had an Alfa Sud, 1.7L, back in the late 80’s. I have many good memories of drives in it, poor things body fell apart with rust. He still has the engine & g/b.
… do you think it’s fundamental to own one to have the passion?
- During my early 30’s another mate of mine had a ’93 155 2.0L T/s, it was an awesome track-day car. It was a “road car” but upgraded suspensions & brakes.
If I didn’t I’d be driving a Mundano.
What do you like most about Alfa’s?
1. Generally AR’s have Sexy styling, sleek lines & my 156 has very nice 16” “tele-dial” alloys. I also like the semi-bucket velour seats giving great support on long trips.
2. Driving above 3000rpm. When travelling on M-ways at 70+ mph [120kph], Alfenia effortlessly accelerates [un-known to me officer…. Honest] to 90/100mph soooo easily, it makes me smile from ear to ear.
3. When washed, waxed & driving well I feel honoured to own Alfenia.
4. The offset number plate, very distinctive.
What do you like least about Alfas?
1. Filling up the petrol tank, 63 Litres @ €1.10 per L …ouch
2. Lack of low down torque, I know, I knew this when I bought it.
3. Under-capable brakes
4. Bumpy ride on back roads from its non-sp* suspensions.
What would be your dream cars?
1. An F50. I seen one outside a hotel in Italy a few years back, it blew my mind away….. then I heard it start……. Man I nearly blew my ….. get the idea???
2. A Mk1 or Mk2 Escort Rally car
3. STi Impreza, for going to work in.
4. Alfa 156 GTA for my wife & kids or whenever AR make an MPV, one of those.
What car would you least like to have?
For you, what’s the most popular thread on AO?
Easy: Any thread where there is a good social interaction, friendly banter but most of all any thread that we in the AO community either get to know each other better OR get a result at the end of it, be it technical or personnel.
What would be your ideal drive in an Alfa (destination, passenger, driving music, etc)?
Driving, with my wife & kids, from my home in SE Ireland to Donegal [I love the scenery there], then onto to Larne catching a Ferry to Scotland, never been there. Then onto Belgium, to Spa for a spin on the F1 track [was at an F1 race there in ‘99] , then Nurrenburg, another track spin there. Calling to Italy on the way home to see Marrinello & to go for another track session there.
Any humorous Alfa or car-related stories you wish to share with us?
During my initial years of driving I was a total lunatic in a car, thankfully most of them could not go faster than 100mph.
One night returning from a local disco myself and a good friend was “tipping” along a back-road in a Nissan Cherry at approx 90mph. Listening to whatever was on the radio & chatting a bit suddenly we seen a million yellow eyes [flock of sheep] < 50 yards ahead.
Instinctively I dropped from 5th to 3rd, pumped the foot brake & yanked up the hand-brake, whilst my mate has instinctively covered his eyes & pulled his two feet up out of the footwell & plonked them onto the dash in preparation for the thump.
The next part was biblical, the tyres & my mate were screeching, blue smoke all around the car, coming in the windows & vents next I see the sheep magically parting …. Like the “red-sea” did for Mosses…. The Cherry glides thro the flock of sheep, not hitting any of them.
When “clear” I floored her & on me way again. Eventually my mate looks over saying “Did we kill anything, I was hoping for a fresh lamb chop”.
To hear him tell the story, it is a bit different BUT my version is the truth
What interests do you have outside of Alfas?
1. My wife & children, I love spending time with them. When my girls help me wash/clean Alfenia I’m on cloud 9. Similarly any time spent with my mother is good time.
2. Sad as it may be, I enjoy garden activities such as cutting the lawn, of course with a ride-on-lawnmower, BBQ’ing, DIY house improvements/decorating, & tending our raspberry patch. My wife makes the best raspberry jam in the locality.
3. I like watching F1 racing, WRC rallying & BTTC.
4. Servicing & valeting cars for people I like.
Tell us something nobody knows about you. (e.g. special skill, ever been on TV, etc)
1. I’m neither Black nor Beautiful
2. Once appeared on an Irish car related TV program talking about my experience of Road Rage.
3. I actually do like “some” BMW’s, the one’s with M or Z in their badging
… I aspire to own a Z3 or Z4 or a Porsche Boxster ….. when I’m ‘kid-less’ again.
What do you like most about Alfaowner forum? Any favourite threads, episodes or posts you wish to share?
Favourite threads/posts are ones that usually start off “ Just bought an AR & now its got such a thing wrong with it…. Please can you help?” I was that soldier only 6 months ago. I like to help others over-come their car problem, when possible. The satisfaction of hearing some-one say “thanks BB for your advise” makes the time I spend on-line even more worth while.
Favourite members: far too many to list. One thing I’m well please with are the number of active Irish posters on AO. We should all have an Irish meet up
As an avid DIY mechanic, do you have a special AHA moment you wish to share with your fellow AO’ers?
- Engine flush does cure a noisy variator
- That’s what an MAF looks like
- I was right, the thermostat was causing Alfenia to run too cold
Oh ****** moments:
- Alfenia won’t rev past 4000rpm
- Alfenia needs a new ECU/ MAF/ Thermostat
- Alfenia need more petrol
Thanks for ya time Pat,
- I’d better reconnect the ABS system after a “fish-tailing” experience.