Tear Up the Track at Private Clubs in Finland, Monaco and Cresson, Texas

Sure, your Lamborghini Huracán Spyder may hit 60mph in 3.4 seconds with a top speed of 201mph--if you could ever really let the beast loose. Try to prove those numbers on any street in the U.S. and you're looking at a speeding ticket, if not jail time.On the other hand, there are plenty of places around the world where you can put your prized possession to its paces. Take a McLaren 570S Coupe through a pure ice field. Or take an Aston Martin Vantage GT4 on the same track used by British racing greats. It'll cost you a lot. But for this kind of thrill, it'll be worth it.Here are 15 places around the world where you can buy your own private pavement -- no cops in sight.Motorsport RanchWhat: 1.3-, 1.7-, and 3.1-mile road courses with available villas to stay in near Fort Worth, Texas. Where: Cresson, Texas. Which car? Your own, whether vintage or modern. When: Year-round. How much: $12,000 for executive status, plus $80 in monthly fees. Highlights: The club has two race courses: The 1.7 mile course is 40 feet wide, has eleven turns, and has thirty feet of elevation changes. The 1.3 mile course is 40 feet wide, has seven turns, and has more than seventy feet of elevation change. There is also a large skid pad and extensive auto storage. Track-side villas are in phase-one of development. Monticello Motor Club What: 4.1 miles of smooth race-grade asphalt and 450 feet of elevation change two hours from Manhattan. Where: Monticello, New York. Which car? Bring your own or use one from the club fleet, which includes Jaguar F-Types and Porsche 911s. When: April to November. How Much: $130,000 for Gold Lifetime Membership, plus annual dues of $13,100. Highlights: Set in beautiful upstate New York, the club includes storage for your own cars, one-on-one instruction, race car rentals, and food on-site. It's very family oriented as well, with Go-Karts and kids activities during the day. The McLaren Ice Field What: Pure McLaren Arctic Experience, a.k.a. a private session McLaren runs for its VIP clients and owners. Where: Ivalo, Finland. Which car? McLaren 570S Coupé. When: January 2017. How much: £12,500 ($15,377) per person. Highlights: Guests are picked up from the airport by a McLaren driver, then whisked to Jávri Lodge, the former residence of the President of Finland. All of this is in the Lappish wilderness of Saariselkä, at the intimate luxury hotel that offers fine-dining and extravagant extras like snowmobile safaris and dogsled tours. P1 International What: A private members club with memberships available at tracks across the globe. Where: Monaco, Monza, Spa, Singapore. Which car? Ferrari 458 Italia, Lamborghini Murcielago, Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, Aston Martin Rapide, Audi R8 Spyder V8, etc. When: Year-round. How Much: £5,500 to £13,500 in annual fees, depending on the track, plus deposit and one-time joiner fees. Highlights: The club's global network means you can "drive to a country house hotel in the Cotswolds for the weekend or pick up a car in Geneva to blast down to Monaco," according to organizers. That and access to near-impossible-to-get cars (Bugatti, Ferrari Enzo) makes this a rare group indeed. Classic Car Club Manhattan What: Private club in an old New York Police Department Stable in the heart of Manhattan. (You'll have to provide your own track.) Where: Pier 76, New York City. Which car? Lamborghini Huracán, Chevrolet Corvette Z06, Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, 1969 Porsche 911T and more. When: Year-round. How Much: Roughly $14,000 per year, including $180 per month for dues and driving-point packages that start at $4,500. Highlights: The Classic Car Club is one of the few that offers equal access to modern stunners and vintage classics. And their taste is impeccable, even including a Bronco in the fleet of optional rides. The club also hosts cocktail events and parties for members often in true Manhattan fashion. Lamborghini Winter Accademia What: A course that teaches driving and drifting--on snow and ice--during daytime and nighttime settings. Where: Livigno, Italy. Which car? The Lamborghini Aventador and the Lamborghini Huracán Coupes. When: February 17-21. How Much: 5,900€ ($6,166), plus 1,150€ for a passenger. Highlights: The course can sound intimidating, but no previous experience is needed as long as you want to learn and you can afford the fee. Lambo's program includes accommodations on par with its brand excellence, with guests staying two nights at Lac Salin Spa and Mountain Resort, and a cocktail and dinner setting where you can befriend your fellow classmates. The area is just two hours from Milan and a popular spot for skiing and snowboarding. Aston Martin Racing Driver Academy What: An all-encompassing driver training and competing program on a U.K. track and in simulator sessions. Where: Oxfordshire, England, and surrounding areas. Which car? Aston Martin Vantage GT4. When: Spring/Summer. How much: £42,330 for complete driver training sessions for two people. Highlights: The academy includes racing suits, helmets, gloves and VIP passes to all races happening in the vicinity. The idea is that you complete this course in order to get your ARDS racing license, which will allow you to compete in World Championship series races with the Aston Martin consumer racing teams. The comprehensive course lasts five days but can be flexible with schedules and travel arrangements. Palm Beach Driving Club What: A 2.034-mile asphalt road course, an 1/4-mile concrete drag strip, and a 8/10-mile Kart Track. The club meets every Wednesday, weather-permitting. Where: Jupiter, Florida. Which car? Your own. When: Year-round. How much: There's an initiation fee of $7,000, with no annual dues, for a seasonal membership--or $22,000 initially plus $5,500 the first year in dues for an individual membership (subsequent years cost differently). Or $37,000 plus a sliding scale of annual dues for a partner membership. Highlights: The group is very familial, with weekly dinners hosted at the track, plus group weekend and karting events. The higher partnership levels get access for two members and VIP access for all PBIR events. Plus the Florida sunshine means this is one of the fewer tracks that are open year-round and at night. The resident pro driver is available for intense one-on-one instruction; the beaches and airport are minutes away. Bentley Power on Ice What: Education in each Bentley car from one-on-one driving pros on how to navigate, speed through and drift on ice and in winter conditions. Where: Ruka Fell, Finland. Which car? Continental GT, Flying Spur and GT3-R (and the Bentayga SUV). When: January and February 2017. How much: €15,130 per guest for the top accommodations. Highlights: In true Bentley fashion, this program is luxe. Each guest gets their own private instructor, and in the downtimes guests can schedule visits to see reindeer herders at work, drinks in the private Ice Bar or a private lakeside lodge. There's also snowmobiling, ice karting, and a night-time husky sled adventure, as well as a traditional Finnish smoke sauna. The Thermal Club What: Five-mile course for amateur and professional racers with on-site villas and a tiny village near Joshua Tree, Calif. Where: Thermal, Calif. Which car? Bring your own, or use one from a fleet of Porsches, BMWs and an Aston Martin. When: Year-round. How much: $85,000 per individual, or $200,000 for a corporate membership, plus $14,000 to $56,000 in annual dues. Lots of land start at $600,000 and go to $2 million. Highlights: The track was designed by famous race-track designer Alan Wilson. It has multiple configurations that mean it'll challenge amateur and professional drivers alike, plus it has go-karting capacity. Club workers will race-prep your cars, provide training and coaching, and maintain your vehicle in the adjacent motorsports village, if desired. Or you can just buy your own land on-site. Club Spring Mountain What: A resort-like club with six miles of track and an 8,000-square-foot clubhouse 55 miles west of Las Vegas. Where: Pahrump, Nevada. Which car? Your own, or Cadillac CTS-V and other "V-Series" cars during special driving events. When: Year-round. How much: $45,000 for individual membership, plus $5,000 in yearly dues; $125,000 for corporate membership, plus $15,000 in yearly dues; or $2,470 for special track days like the Cadillac Performance Academy. Highlights: The area looks like a golf club nestled up against desert mountains, with a clubhouse, condominiums, private garages, racquetball court, and a 4.5-acre freshwater lake all near the track. The pool, showers, fitness room, lounges and locker rooms are family-friendly. Autobahn Country Club What: An elite driving club that allows members one-on-one instruction and free access to tracks. Where: Joliet, Illinois. Which car? Corvette Z06, Ferrari California T, among others, or your own car. When: Seven months/year. How much: $40,000 initiation fee plus $5,000 per year. Highlights: This track has one of the most varied driving schedules and courses offered, with high-performance and defensive-driving classes routinely offered. You can also store your car there, build your own garage and condo, or drive from the wide variety of fleet cars (Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Infiniti, Chevrolet, Lexus, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche) available for testing and instruction. Porsche Driving Experience What: Master RSR Porsche Leipzig driving school, one of the highest-level driver training classes Porsche offers for consumers. Where: Leipzig, Germany. Which car? Porsche 991 GT3 Cup and 911 GT3 RS. When: August 26, 27. How much: 10,500€ plus 300€ for accompanying. Highlights: Porsche drivers are legendary, so the chance to have this level of elite instruction over two days in Germany is a lifetime opportunity. (You must pass many other, less-advanced Porsche driving courses before you can take this one.) Accommodations are provided by partnering hotels. The next level after this is to start racing. AMG Driving Academy What: A series of tracks and driving experiences with the highest-tuned sports cars from Mercedes. Where: Laguna Seca (California), Road Atlanta (Georgia), Circuit of the Americas (Texas), Lime Rock Park (Connecticut). Which car? Mercedes-Benz AMG GT S, Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG and other AMGs. When: Dates available throughout the year. How much: $5,995 for the three-day pro experience. Highlights: The brochure says it all: "Everything put into AMG vehicles we learned at the track. Now you can share in that too." The span of cars available to drive, and the varied tracks available, make this course easily accessible to drivers nationwide. The classes go from basic to advanced instruction, with "Pro+" and "Drift Experience" sessions as well. Breakfast, lunch and video analysis of your driving are included. BMW Ice Fascination Training What: A driving course on an ice lake in the polar circle that aims to help you perfect your precision, handling and control when you drive in inclement weather. Where: Arjeplog, Sweden. Which car? BMW M4 Coupé. When: January 27-30. How much: 3,990€. Highlights: The locale for this is stunning, set at the official BMW test center near the Arctic Circle that also acts as a base for BMW Snow and Ice Trainings. Four nights of staying in high-end area hotels, snowmobiling, dog-sledding, rides in special BMW vehicles, an airport transfer, and local food are included. Hannah Elliott, Bloomberg  Continue reading...

Copyright The Dallas Morning News
Contact Us