We enjoyed a beautiful long weekend in Piemonte, Italy, taking part in the Lonville Classic car race. A long weekend with ADULTS!!! 😉
Gaja is now 4 and Soraya 2.5 and yet I never felt comfortable leaving them with ‘nonna’ (Richard’s mother) and Benji (who is now practically part of our family). Not because they are not trustworthy, but I guess because I always had an excuse why I wasn’t able to leave the girls and go away for a nice long weekend. (overprotective!? maybe!)
The last time we entered a classic car race (pre-kids!), the first few days of the race Richard and I spent screaming at each other or not speaking to each other at all. By day 3 we finally got a hang of it and started to enjoy the race a bit… This time the first fight we had was on the way to Piemonte, way before the race even started! We managed to get lost but anyway, in the end we got there in one piece (although Richard at one point threatened to drop me off there and go back home!).
Day one we were feeling quite nervous and competitive. We received the road book which follows the usual ball and arrow logic. The speedometer in our car was broken and wouldn’t go back to zero, so I had to keep calculating the distances between the points. So Richard tells me before the race that I must keep yelling out the numbers to him. About 15 minutes into the race I told him to turn left in 500m and he sped straight past. Then he got so pissed off we missed the turn and screamed at me saying ‘you keep screaming out these numbers to me!!!’ Ummmmmm yah, you told me to, what the hell! So I made that point quite clear, and he then said to me ‘well, you need to understand whether I understood you!!!’. Ok, this wasn’t starting off too well……. Then after the morning session, we came so far off our time limit and realised there was NO WAYS we could actually even think about winning, so we started to relax and actually enjoy the race!
What attracted me to this race in the first place was the Lonville attitude of: ‘To reward your work behind the wheel, and in true Italian style, we will make time for important things: espresso, long lunches, good dinners, fine wine and chefs that make a difference!’ And the staff really made sure we enjoyed every moment.
So we decided to enjoy what we don’t often get to enjoy (or at least I don’t!)… Adult company, no baby talk, no food stains, no nappy changing, no 10,000,000 questions a day…. Instead, good breakfast, amazing scenery, Michelin star restaurants, wine tasting, more Michelin star restaurants, more wine tasting, truffle dinners, real conversations, and most importantly, getting stuck in a car with each other and talking about everything except kids, quality time!!
Day 1 after our morning drive we had a great lunch at La Ciau del Tornavento, a Michelin star restaurant. Not only was the food amazing, they had the most incredible wine cellar. I’ve never seen anything like it, I would have been happy to be locked in there for a while! 😉 Day 2 we lunched at Relais San Maurizio. Stunning. We squeezed in 2 wine tastings over the days too, at Massolino and at Cantina Cordero di Montezemolo. At the latter we also had lunch while we tasted all the wines. I loved it there - a totally family run business. The son giving us the tour of the vineyards and cellars, the daughter giving us the tasting and taking care of us in the restaurant, the mother cooking in the kitchen….. Everyone was involved, what a lovely family and lovely wines! We bought a few cases to enjoy back at home with friends…
My favourite day was the ‘Dress in the year of your car’ day. I sported a massive afro that could hardly fit in the car. Everyone dressed up and it was hilarious seeing people’s reaction as we stopped and walked out for lunch. They also made the event fun by having secret time check points, little hidden competitions (which we sucked at!!), and of course drives through the most beautiful sceneries.
During the 4 days, we stayed at Relais D’Amelia, a beautiful and relaxing hotel, and enjoyed all our dinners in the hotel after a busy and active day.
I can’t believe it was both of our first time in Piemonte. It’s only 3hrs away from where we live so we will definitely be back. It’s gorgeous, you look around and its vineyards everywhere. My daughter Gaja was named after the GAJA wine from this region, so it would only be fair to come back with the kids and enjoy a beautiful weekend here soon!
All in all it was a great weekend with the best food, breath-taking scenery, beautiful classic cars and super fun company! So, who is joining us on the Lonville Classic next year!? 🙂
Keep checking lonville.com (Lonville Classic) for any upcoming races!
Relais Villa d’Amelia
Loc. Manera, 1
12050 Benevello (CN) – Italia
Tel: + 39 0173 529 225
La Ciau del Tornavento
iazza Baracco, 7
(Cuneo) - Italia
Tel. +39 0173 638 333
Cantina Cordero di Montezemolo
Fr. Annunziata, 67
12064 La Morra (Cn) – Italia
“Guido da Costigliole” restaurant
Relais San Maurizio
Località San Maurizio, 39 12058 Santo Stefano Belbo - CN - Italy