Owning a brand new Porsche 911 R is no an easy feat. Despite there only being 911 R’s in existence, many selling without hesitation.
Of this limited series, Denver’s 9 News reporter Adele Arakawa is among the few “handful of Porsche purists (who didn’t own a 918) …handpicked by dealerships…” Among these elite motorists, considerably fewer women were offered the chance to purchase the race car.
Local foreign car importer, Prestige Imports of Lakewood, first wrote a letter on her behalf. Greg Sunfield of Prestige Imports gave insight about this process and how the dealership was able to nominate Adele.
Gregg explains, “Normally cars are given to dealers to sell to their customers, but with so few cars this was not possible. So Porsche initiated an application process for the cars with about 18 scheduled for the USA.”
“We (Prestige Imports) drafted a letter on Adele’s behalf, speaking about her long connection to Porsche, the Porsche community and the community at large being a local news television figure. The application went up the ladder of review until it made it to Porsche executive management in Germany at Porsche AG corporation. They determined that Adele would receive one of these very exclusive Porsche cars.”
We sat down with Adele and explored her passion for fast cars and racing.
When did your interest in race cars begin? How did it develop over time?
My first car was a 1971 Fiat 850 Spyder when I was 16 years old. Over the years, I fed my love for cars with many different makes and models, including a Datsun 240Z, a 280Z, 300ZX and Jaguar XJS. My first Porsche was a 1991 911 C4, and I’ve owned Porsches ever since.
What drew you towards owning this vehicle?
The 911R was Porsche’s answer to enthusiasts to those who wanted a “back-to-basics” car. Porsche had gone to what’s considered a manual transmission on most of its cars and a numb, cushier feel, away from the car that defined the 911 in the past: a driver’s car that you could connect to.
Have you participated in a track day? Do you plan to with the 911 R?
My sentimental favorite Porsche is a 1995 911 C4, purchased in 1999 that I turned into a dedicated race car. It has 14,000 track miles on it and has been to numerous tracks, including Daytona International Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The new 911R may see some track time, but not extensively.
Where have your favorite few places to drive the 911R? Can you describe where you were and why you liked it?
There are many great drives in Colorado, scattered throughout the state. The more twisty, the better! Close to Denver, Lookout Mountain Road is one. Another is 285 west of Denver and roads that spin off from it.
Highway 73 is also decent, and a few secret two-lane stretches around Castle Rock and Elizabethtown.
Do you know many other women with racing interests?
As a licensed Club Racer with the Porsche Club and a certified instructor, I do get to share my passion for cars with other women who are also instructors or come to the track with their cars. Some women will come with their significant others to find out: what a track day is all about and end up enjoying it as much anyone. The Club holds a Ladies Day event, no testosterone allowed, where it’s women only behind the wheel. It’s the best event of the season!