So there I was, sitting in a Twingo GT, writing up some notes about seats that double up as picnic tables and looks that fail to hit the spot, when my mobile rang. It was a voice message from someone I know who’s an adviser at Honda, and it simply said "Hi Steve, can you call me back, I’ve got some rather good news."

So I called back, my mate answered, and he asked "what are you doing on December 7th?" He should have simply said "what were you doing on December 7th?"

Then he said, quite matter of factly "how would you like to drive the F1 car around Jerez? For one whole day? Oh yes, and Jenson will be there to show you how it’s done."

My heart went thumpety-thump, and my imagination quickly went berserk with pure excitement. But then my memory scrolled back to a time when I was upside down in a Jaguar S-type R, heading backwards towards a tyre wall at 120mph – with a somewhat befuddled-looking Antonio Pizzonia sitting next to me.