While we finish closing out MTTS 2012, I thought I would take a minute to answer the number 1 question I had all week.

How was The Dragon?

That’s right, I finally got the chance to drive US129. Not only did I drive it, I drove it in the JCW Roadster. We used it as a midday stop on our way to Knoxville, TN. When I say we, I mean about 200 MTTS participants, some of whom, like me, have never driven the dragon either.

End to end, best speed was about 30MPH. I’m told that’s not normal, but it was completely ok with me since I was unfamiliar with the road. And it was pretty cool. To be honest, I was a little disappointed. The hype machine is definitely strong with this road.

I’ve driven Mollholland. I’ve driven Stunt. I’ve driven Kanan Dune. I’ve driven Hwy 74. I’ve driven to the Palomar Observatory. These are all amazing roads. Dare I say, better than The Dragon. Which isn’t to say that The Dragon isn’t a great road, because it really is. I thought it was fun and very scenic, if not a little short.

Here’s the thing. Most everyone that has asked me what I thought about the road had driven it during MINIs on The Dragon, I think that adds a level of awesome that doesn’t exist if you aren’t spending the entire weekend there, with your mates, driving the roads around that area. I likened it to going to Vegas (as a MINI enthusiast) while AMVIV isn’t there. Sure it’s cool and all that, but it’s not **epic**. It’s all about the people.

I’m 100% certain that when I do attend MINIs on the Dragon and drive US129 with my mates during that weekend, my opinion will change from ‘ok’ to ‘epic’. I really think, much like everything else, it’s the people that make it, not the road itself.

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3 Comments

  1. Totally agree, DB. Margaret & I took GP0203 on it last year, max speed somewhere 40-45. Very fun taking the twisties, but no more wow than say Bear Notch during MINIsOnTop.
    And it’s long – very bad for Margaret as a passenger with no steering wheel to hold on to.

    I’m always put off by MOTD, as some MINI idiot always spoils it :(

  2. Not EPIC for sure, at least for me the 2 times I drove it during MoTD. Sad to say I got motion sickness, I never do, gong in and out. Did it have one helluva bunch of turns yes it did. Scenic wise it was OK but California Hwy 1 above Cambria to Carmel… well no comparison.

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