Curb and Canyon: A Porsche Podcast

Under the Hood with Henry Catchpole: Exploring Porsche's Legacy

July 04, 2023 Andy Gaunt, James McGrath, Henry Catchpole Season 3 Episode 7
Curb and Canyon: A Porsche Podcast
Under the Hood with Henry Catchpole: Exploring Porsche's Legacy
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Get ready to rev your engines and shift into high gear as we embark on a thrilling journey exploring the realm of motoring journalism with the one-and-only Henry Catchpole. Renowned for his articulate and engaging content, Henry takes us down memory lane, sharing his two-decade-long passion for automobiles, his admiration for Evo magazine and his love for extracurricular activities like running and cycling.

Stay tuned as we take a deep dive into the world of Porsche. We uncover the hidden allure of these iconic cars, discussing their unique appeal and the hair-raising exhilaration they induce. We further delve into the different Porsche models, discussing our experiences with the 997 and the future of electric sports cars. Our conversation veers into the perfect road trip and the ideal Porsche to accompany it, with Henry leaning towards a 2.7 RS for Scotland and James favoring his Cayenne for a Chipotle run.

We wrap up our fascinating chat reflecting on Henry's illustrious career. We discuss the shift from writing to video content creation, Henry's unique style of storytelling, and even our shared love for racing games during our younger years. Join us for this riveting episode as we navigate the exciting twists and turns of the automotive industry, with invaluable insights from one of its most respected voices. Buckle up and enjoy the ride!

Speaker 1:

James McGraw.

Speaker 2:

Andy Gawnes how are you?

Speaker 1:

Good to see you. Look at you up bright and early, sparky, ready to face the day. It's incredible.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you know what? Just, it's amazing what I can do without coffee. actually, i haven't had any yet, but I'm doing. I'm excited about this week's, this week's pod We're going to. we're going to mix it up a little bit.

Speaker 1:

Well, i felt, yeah, that's it, we have got a special guest. And I wonder if that's perhaps why you're up as early as you are and and Brad Art and bushy tailed the way you are, because you're excited about this very special guest we have tonight.

Speaker 2:

I think you're talking about yourself, to be honest, considering it's five in the morning for me, but you were phoning me much earlier than five o'clock to make sure that I was out of bed and that I was ready. I know you're excited for today I mean I am but I know you are.

Speaker 1:

You got some clues. You know who this is. It's someone from the automotive world.

Speaker 2:

It's quite a big name, isn't it? It's Joey from Friends.

Speaker 1:

It's not. Joey from Friends. Let me do you know he's sitting there on the line patiently. I need to bring him in. I feel like I'm hosting an episode of smart less here. So I've got to say you're right. I am super excited about this guest And in fact I'm actually a little bit nervous, Because in the automotive journalism world there are a few better than this man. There are a few whose content is as beautifully produced, few who can so clearly articulate the feeling behind the wheel of a car that most of us will never experience. And he has this poeticism to his voice. And even my wife, Kath, will watch his videos because she reckons he sounds like Kevin MacLeod. This guy's a Mad King cyclist. He looks as fit as a fiddle And he has some of the best sideburns I've seen since Luke Perry in Beverly Hills 90210. I'm going to say it up front this is a big fanboy moment for me, James. It's the one, It's the only, Henry catchpal No way, Henry welcome, thank you.

Speaker 3:

Thank you very much. I feel like I now would say sort of sort of how you doing So. I'm so sorry I'm not. Joey from friends, matt LeBlanc would be much better. Everyone's now very disappointed.

Speaker 1:

I can't believe you actually went with the top gear presenter of all the people you could have thrown in there.

Speaker 2:

You know what. Maybe it's just because I was hoping for Joey from friends. No, no, henry catchpal, henry, henry, welcome.

Speaker 3:

I'm definitely more Chandler anyway, so fair enough, maybe me too.

Speaker 2:

Henry, welcome to the pod. I don't know how much you know about Curb and Canyon, but but pretty much every episode we're often sort of talking about you referring to you, and it's just incredible that we got you on the pod. I like I'm blown away, absolutely blown away.

Speaker 3:

It's a pleasure We're doing this. It's great.

Speaker 1:

I need to use the chat portion So that's so good to hear because, as a few of my friends have somewhat unkindly asked, how the hell did we get you to agree to come on the pod You?

Speaker 3:

sent me a message on Instagram and I replied and that's. You know, that's the way we did. It's kind of I try and reply to most messages on Instagram one way or another and don't flub me with them. It takes me a while generally, as you know, but yeah try and get around to it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and you're exceedingly nice. Exceedingly nice, Henry. For those who don't know and there wouldn't be many, I assume who, who is Henry, catch pole.

Speaker 3:

Henry catch pole is a tall British motoring journalist.

Speaker 2:

Wait, there are two of us.

Speaker 3:

A lot of coffee. I'm drinking my coffee. Actually, the only reason we, the only reason we might get interrupted is because I've got the coffee delivery coming At some point, so I have no control of that. So if we have to pause, it's for good reason, because there is good coffee coming from that's totally cool. So yeah, cast on coffee roasters actually. So I'm on Kalona at the moment, but yeah, anyway, i digress. I am 41 years old And I've been doing this for best part of 20 years now, and by this I mean being a being a motoring journalist. So yeah, good Lord, i like cycling as well Running, yeah yeah, all that sort of stuff.

Speaker 1:

Amazing Henry, take me back to those early days. those early journalism days was was was, evo, the beginning? Does it go back further than that? How did it all start for you?

Speaker 3:

So it really started. It sort of started with Evo in some ways. I bought car magazines before that sort of stuff. My parents were into cars very much. They met through MGs way back in in the 60s And I suppose I yeah, i'd always loved cars was one that sort of thing. But it was when Evo came out as a magazine that my best friend at school, bruce, his father, bought the first issue of Evo because he was thinking about buying a Maserati 3300 and 3200. It's much better. And so he bought the first issue. Bruce nicked it off him, i nicked it off Bruce and I read it And I just thought this is kind of this is brilliant And I'd read sort of performance card for that. So I knew some of the names and things. But there was something about Evo And they're kind of, i'd say, seriously, because they didn't take it too seriously, but it was beautifully written and fantastic photography. I just thought this, this is what I want to do. I wasn't everybody dreams of being a driver, being a Formula One driver, rally driver, whatever But I hadn't been put in a car to the age of two. I clearly, you know I was too tall for single seaters even by that point Anyway. So, yeah, i just, and I loved writing and I thought this is absolutely what I want to do. So it sort of started with Evo. Obviously, i didn't go straight from school into it, i did. I think there was various sort of competitions you could enter. Weirdly, at the time, sort of the Daily Telegraph had one for young motoring writers which seemed awfully specific sort of. When you look at it now, it's sort of it's that point where you think am I in the Truman show? because you know why on earth would somebody run a competition specifically for young motoring writers? That's, you know, that's, that's bizarre. But then, right, um, enter that. And I think I got shortlisted or something like that. Anyway, i milked that for all it was worth And I should get work experience through that. And they're weak with Evo while I was at university and they're weak with AutoCars. But Evo is really where I wanted to be. It just just kind of felt, felt like, hey, i mean, i didn't really do much during that first week And the most exciting car I went in was the Citroen C5. Probably a diesel On the, on the on the run to Tesco at lunchtime. But yeah, it was just fantastic. I did make myself the motoring editor of the student rag up at St Andrews University. It's called the Saint imaginatively, and yeah, i don't know, sort of, if they really wanted a motoring journalist in their pages. No, i wouldn't have thought so.

Speaker 2:

That's well, that's 12. Readers were really excited about it.

Speaker 3:

Well, yeah, exactly, and there's I've talked to all, but there's I somewhere have the back page of it where the top line of it for the sports section is Jonathan Palmer reviews the football season or something like that, and then underneath it Henry Catchpole reviews the new F1 season, which I always thought was quite quite amusing. It's pretty good, but yeah, other than that, basically not. I could just like press passes into the local race circuit sort of up there and go along and stand inside the fence and, well, not have to pay for a ticket. That was the main thing. Yeah, yeah, i was a poor student So and then came out of university, emailed Evo sort of. Actually, no, i didn't. I popped in to see Evo once I came out and I had my sort of portfolio of two bits and bobs I'd written and sort of perhaps rushing your column, and obviously what I'd written for the saint. She was probably complete rubbish, but I popped into the offices because I was driving up the M1 in my mini and in my mind the offices weren't that far off the M1. They're actually quite, quite a way away And they, evo, had just been sort of it was in a bit of a transition period and I just sort of lucked in. It was just after deadline, so everyone was quite sort of relaxed and happy And they said oh yeah, we're a bit thin on the ground at the moment because a couple of people had gone I think Dickie Meaden had just gone freelance, and there was a sort of jet throw and sort of stepped up. So there was that position for a lowly dog's body. He could make tea and coffee neither of which I drank at the time, actually but I made an awful lot of them because that was about the most useful thing I could do.

Speaker 2:

Glamorous, and so you basically stalked your way into your job.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, kind of, yeah, it's kind of.

Speaker 2:

you know you thought I'm yeah, i'm just going to go and hunt these guys down and make them give me a job.

Speaker 3:

I like to think of it as sort of showing, showing initiative and tenacity. But if you want to stay stalked, that's, you know, that's, that's your look at, james. It's all a matter of perception.

Speaker 2:

I guess, I guess, I guess fruit.

Speaker 1:

I just, I just googled Henry Catchpole plus the saint. I can't find any of your old works, unfortunately. So oh good, Thanks, Yeah, it's pre-internet.

Speaker 3:

So well, sort of.

Speaker 1:

And so when you're at Evo, the thing that always strikes me about that cohort of writers is that clearly you can all. You can all steer pretty bloody well as well as right really well. Is there equal parts training of how to craft a beautiful narrative and how to put a car into oversteer and Pose it for the camera at speed?

Speaker 3:

I mean, i wouldn't say there's really any training at all As such. It was a quite a strange thing. You definitely had to go and ask for feedback on your writing And, in terms of the driving, i had something to do with it. I thought I think I was probably not going to last very long. I thought I drove far too slowly, most of which was because I had crashed a car on work experience and therefore thought that I'd somehow managed to get around that and still potentially have a career in this, and so the last thing I wanted to do, so I erred on the side of caution, which was then probably the wrong thing to do. But anyway, here we are today. So, yeah, a lot of it's just a bit of practice, because you end up at circuits, obviously, if you can sort of blag a bit of time at the end of the day and stuff like that, and it's a case of being You've got to know when to take the risks, to learn, i suppose, because, like I said, they want to know they've got a safe pair of hands. Initially, because you're not going to be sent out to go. And Oh, here's a latest GT3. Could you just go and do the cornering shots over there Because we need a couple. It's not going to happen, which is absolutely brilliant, because that's not what I wanted to happen. To be honest, you want that proper apprenticeship and I was very lucky that I kind of had that Bit of pressure. Yeah, exactly, and it just So. I had Bedford Water Dremens just around the corner. That was our sort of home circuit. They were very good to me as well, and sometimes in the evening I can be able to practice down there a couple of times And the rest of it, yeah, i sat next to Jathro and Dickey and John, as you say. They were absolutely heroes to me and are incredibly good drivers, i mean you sort of have to sit next to them and be able to watch them jump from one car to another, because you have these big group tests And it's like you've got very limited times. You've probably got two or three laps in each car, sometimes to extract a lap time. That's good enough And they were literally just one to the other and I would do all the timing equipment at the time because again it was another job that nobody really wants to do because it's all a bit sort of faffy and terrible old PC laptop that was a bit recalcitrant and stuff like that. So I would do that and stick all the aerials on and make sure it was all working And then obviously to check that it was still working. We always did our figuring two laps. So I got to sit there and luckily I'm not somebody that gets sick in the car. So you get to And if you know what you're looking for to some extent and you have an appreciation of driving and you're just a sponge, at that point you've got an absolute front-row seat to see how to do it all. And I've always been a bit of a case of monkey seat monkey, do I like that element of it If I've seen somebody else, hitting and turning, braking, doing whatever it is in a car and understanding how all these different cars work. For me that was absolutely brilliant because you just store away all this information. That definitely helped me a huge amount. That, and playing GT3 or GT4, possibly Grand Triusmo 4. We had a rig in the office. We had a rig in the office with a big old Sony TV screen and a flat screen business And a recarious seat and some scaffolding and stuff like that, and that was brilliant because I had no friends out there at the time. So I was just living out of B&Bs or sort of you know room in some random person's house that I was paying for. So I had nothing to do in the evenings other than sit there and play on this Sony PlayStation.

Speaker 1:

You said like quite the catch back in those days, Henry.

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, absolutely Yeah, really was.

Speaker 2:

That takes me back to my early days in London. I was more of a Project Gotham guy on the Xbox but yeah, i had many a lonely Friday night with a takeaway pizza in my flat and chiswick Playing racing games.

Speaker 3:

And it's what turned us into the nice, rounded people we are today.

Speaker 2:

Exactly exactly.

Speaker 1:

For me it was Daytona, down at the local, the local time zone, arcade Daytona and Sigarelli with a two.

Speaker 2:

You do it differently in Australia, though We all know that.

Speaker 1:

Well, it's because we're upside down, exactly. Yeah, henry, tell me about that transition from you know, automotive journalists, the written word, into the video space, into the content space, because it seems as though you know, for a lot, of, a lot of motoring journals, that's a transition that's perhaps a tough one to make, where they don't necessarily feel comfortable stepping in front of the camera. How did you find that and did you deliberately set about? you've got quite a unique style. Did you deliberately set about cultivating that, or was it just just sort of by osmosis just happened?

Speaker 3:

It wasn't. I mean, when I started out there was no sort of. There was an Evo website, but we didn't really do much on it, to be honest, at all, even sort of the written stuff, and gradually that came in and then there was no thought of doing video at all. There was Top Gear in the UK, but that was just something completely different. Obviously, clarkson came from a magazine background with some of the guys that I was working with, the Evo, but it just didn't even hadn't crossed my mind at all. But as it sort of came along, some guys started sort of dabbling in it. I suppose There was that whole period when some of us went off and set up Drives Republic and there was a bit of video stuff going on. And then the iPad came out and there was really a feeling at the time There was sort of the economic troubles as well and magazines were. It looked like they were dying. Everybody was predicting the end of magazines and the iPad was going to take over and this whole digital media usually comes out. I was sitting there as a relatively young later in the journalist thinking, right, how am I going to keep doing this? So video might have to be something that I look at doing And I'd always loved the photography side of things as well. I've taken photos and enjoyed working with all the fantastic photographers at Evo, so I liked the visual side of it and the fact that a magazine is kind of putting a magazine feature together is a bit like putting a video together in terms of I think. Anyway, if you work with the photographer to get the photos, they're going to represent the words And vice versa. You might get an amazing photo and then weave that into how you tell the stories that you think that's going to be a great open, so you write it around the photos. You have this lovely blend of image and word. So actually, once I got my head around that and I began looking at generally other outside the automotive space, skiing or cycling or mountain biking- It was top like that maybe just really really beautiful videos And there's nobody really doing that with cars on the outside of top gear, and I thought, well, perhaps we could do that and produce films that are where I am just an incidental part of it because I have to be in it and review the car or whatever but make me make it much more about scenery and stuff. So it's not just me. And I went on I think Dennis probably is doing set up some sort of course for people that were looking at getting into, although promoting people to do more video. And I went along to that and I don't think I took it terribly seriously but actually realized that that was probably the way to do it and just be sort of confident with it. If you're, if you're, if you're reticent about it, it doesn't work. And the first few times on camera you sort of you watch your back and you go that's terrible. And then you realize that you have to be sort of 150% of yourself. Yes, because I, you know I'm a fairly quiet, mumbling sort of person on my looking on camera anyway. But that's me at 150% and I realize I'm still relatively quietly spoken.

Speaker 1:

That's the feedback way ahead about you.

Speaker 3:

So yeah, it kind of and I don't script stuff really at all because that doesn't work for me I think that's something that you have to. you know the idea of learning lines. you just then stumble over them, so it just be as natural as possible, i suppose, and talk about what you've seen feel and all that. So yeah, I've enjoyed it. I still find it slightly awkward seeing myself on screen, but I've got used to it, i suppose just because I have to do it every day, and just you do get get used to it. And I look at it. I see myself on screen and it's weird. I don't almost see it as me. I've managed to somehow detach myself, so I don't feel quite so awkward about it. But yeah, there we go. Luckily it seems to work and people like watching it.

Speaker 1:

It's funny, that isn't it? Because I'll sometimes be cutting one of my videos and my wife will come in and there I am And she'll just say you just watching yourself again. No, it's not. I'm not sitting here super impressed by how amazing I am. Someone has to cut it, and it's got to be me, unfortunately. So yeah, i sit there looking at myself all the time and she just thinks I'm incredibly nuts, i think. But it is true You do. It's funny what you say about having to be this kind of amplified version of yourself, because I know with, even with the pod with James, when we're just kind of talking, normally the way that comes across on the pod can be a little bit low energy. It doesn't quite deliver in the same way. So you do, everything's got to be amplified.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, it's a funny old business, isn't it? There we go.

Speaker 1:

Do you ever? there are videos, particularly your early ones, that you look back on and think oh god, in fact, what was I thinking there? or what was the edit decision we made there that didn't land?

Speaker 3:

Oh, yeah, yeah lots. Thankfully they've generally sort of disappeared off into the depths of YouTube and they're quite hard to find. I've made that mistake before by pointing ones out. People have gone far like yeah exactly, and it's generally I mean I listen back to stuff like voiceover that you sort of think gosh, i just so you sort of I don't know either worthy or just slightly disinterested at the time, and again you have to amp it up and get better. I'm still not great at it, but in terms of voiceover, but yeah, there's certain things as well, like just I've realized I've never been the sort of one for male grooming and sort of having my haircut twice a week or anything like that Twice a week, and yeah, whatever it is, i don't know what people do.

Speaker 1:

Have you been telling him about my routine, james Oh my god, you can see how perfectly groomed Andy's queers.

Speaker 3:

And I was basically always a bit disheveled and you know, going through a hedge backwards sort of thing. But I realized again that I couldn't appear on camera totally disheveled and sort of go, oh, it's fine, it doesn't matter, i'm just myself. Because then you become a distraction for the people watching. If people are watching commenting on kind of you could have brushed your hair this morning, or kind of you know, why didn't you show that half of your face or whatever it was, then they're not looking at the car and it's become. You've defeated the point of making the video and you've gone through all that effort and all people are doing is, yeah, looking at, not the car, which is not right.

Speaker 1:

No, yeah, misses the point, doesn't it? So you've had, i think, james. How many videos of the week has Henry had at least two, right.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, definitely, and if it was up to you we wouldn't have anyone else with video of the week This week from my Henry collection.

Speaker 1:

Look, that may or may not be true, absolutely true. Well, thank you, it's mostly true. But so that level of production that goes into what you do, the cinematography and the like it's epic.

Speaker 2:

It really is next level.

Speaker 1:

You know the drone work. In fact, james sent me a message the other day about one of your videos and he used a rather unkind word because he's just like, yeah, this is so good. And so my question is when you're doing that and you're you know you're shooting drive-bys. We get to see this video where it looks like you're effortlessly driving through the black forest or somewhere, but clearly you're having to drive past the camera. Stop, turn around, come back the other way. Do you get that opportunity to just enjoy the car, or is it you know so much start, stop, get the shot and all that sort of stuff. How do you balance those things?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, it's, you have to make sure that you get the chance to enjoy the car, at least test the car and find out what it's about, which obviously you're doing sort of all the time when you're doing shots. But equally, as you say, is you know, there's an awful lot to think about to get the shots and pick the right piece of road in the first place. That helps enormously. But yeah, you're looking for your turn around spots. What sort of shotters the cameraman about to do? you're doing the right speed? are you doing? yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, it means the car doing the right thing in the corner, etc. Etc. So, yes, you're thinking about an awful lot of other things other than just what is this car like. For a lot of the time and a lot of it, it was always the same with photography, though you know you, the best drive on even something like Ivo car of the year was often turned from the hotel at the beginning and the end of the day, and that was the really, really fun bit, where you're not thinking about anything else other than just driving the car. But yeah, i mean you do still get fantastic kind of moments just to just to enjoy the car. And I've always said to people I think it's kind of it's, it's nothing like as glamorous as it looks, and that's that's part of my. My job is obviously to make everything look as lovely as possible, because it's it's not not what people want to see really otherwise. But, um, so it's not as glamorous as it looks, but equally, the highs are even higher than them. I can probably convey on film, because you get those moments that are just just absolutely, absolutely fantastic. So, yeah, it's, you definitely still get the chance to try the cars and enjoy them that's actually so good to hear, because I I wondered about that.

Speaker 1:

So you've got, you know, you think about some of the cars you've driven 9-11, gt1, shingo, guntherworks, speedster, gt4, rs, workshop, 5000 and one, all of them, right, the whole gamut. And then you've got access to these sort of luminary figures, like Andy Proeninger, jean-pierre Nicholas, like all these these moments where you know the average Joe, like, like, like me and James here we're not going to get to be able to do that, and Do you? do you still have those pinch yourself moments?

Speaker 3:

Oh, yeah, absolutely, yeah, definitely because Yeah, I think the moment you don't, you probably stop stop doing the job Because, yeah, yeah, you know this is absolutely, and I love finding new roads and And, yeah, it's just, i still I love cars. You know, i love driving. That's, that's what you know, gives me the biggest kick. It's, it's the, it's, it's not the particularly some of the Value of the car or anything like this. It is how it makes me feel when I'm driving and driving, yeah, quickly, slowly, whatever, just that, that's what gets me out of bed in the morning. So I still Look forward to that. And it's a meeting the people. That's always, always fascinating and I can't, can't quite believe some of the people I have been able to meet through the through the job. I wouldn't sense Wrong sets the best, because I still love the cars, but it's just it's something I probably didn't even really think about When I started doing the job that I get to meet, meet these people.

Speaker 2:

So, yeah, have you met Joey from friends.

Speaker 3:

No, no, I haven't actually no.

Speaker 2:

It's kind of never been in the same room together.

Speaker 3:

Oh, conspiracy theory.

Speaker 1:

I Sure Henry was probably pretty nervous about meeting us today of course absolutely. Joey, from friends. So, henry, obviously you drive everything right, and so James and I. Obviously our podcast is very, let's say, porsche centric. So you know, obviously, the cars you drive. You drive all the big hitters from all the big brands as well as you know Some of the, the hot hatches, all these things, and so every, every brand has its place in this, in this Sort of universe, automotive universe, let's say, and all of them have their brilliant things and they're not so brilliant things. Can you talk about What you think makes Porsche so special in that, in the pantheon of aspirational automakers, what perhaps separates it?

Speaker 3:

Ah, i think it is. Is it's down to? it's probably down to the engineering, isn't it really that? and there's a, there's the the racing element, which is undoubtedly important because that inspires people. I think sort of you know there's a, you can't help it, sort of. You see the growling I love and all you get Sort of wrapped up in the, the history much at 917 or all these stories behind it, and then For me it's just it comes back to the driving. Really, at the end of the day, if it is all that stuff, but at the heart of it, what makes me love Porsches is the way they drive. And Yeah, it's something that I didn't really get me growing up. You know, all things I've just mentioned apply to Ferrari, to those. Face it. And growing up I love Ferrari. Yeah, they were red. My favorite color was red. That was. That was my favorite. I have. I had an entire, you know One to sort of massive great storage tubs full of all my Ferrari models that I collected. When I got that was the brand, it was more glorious. They kind of looked not with this slightly funky shape of a 9-11 that you can us. It's Mm-hmm, it's they look more that. But you drive a Porsche and you drive one for the first time And I did it well, everybody else does as well with you know, even a car of year and Porsche winning all those times, you know, before I was joining the magazine, he's really. It's a Porsche again. Why kind of you know, surely? there's a lot of me over there kind of like why, why did that not not win? and You kind of. And then you drive it and You feel that gear shift and you feel that steering, you feel the way that you know in case of a 9-11, that weight distribution. And Then you drive it a bit more and then you start sliding around and Sort of I'm saying there are other cars that do it, but the way that a Porsche, over the limit, seems to keep gripping and just feels so controllable when you slide one, and that feeling is just Addictive and I think that's you know the way they drive is, you know fast or slow, but it's only the best ones where they sound. That feeling when you're behind the wheel, that is what makes people, i think, so enthusiastic and loyal to them. And Yeah, there's nothing else quite like it.

Speaker 1:

Do you think as well that the the sort of culture around them and There's a, there's a level of exclusivity that perhaps is not at the level of something like Ferrari or Lamborghini, where they really are reserved for the very lucky few, whereas you can get into a Gen 1 Boxster or you can get into a 944 or one of these older cars, have a ripping good time in them And you're in, you're part of the gang, you're part of the community?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, i think that's definitely okay. So it's slightly depressing watching the prices of all sorts of good particular 9-elevens going north. But, as you say, there are still ones out there that you can get into for, thankfully, not too much money. And, yeah, it is different to other things out there. And while never, you look at, yeah, you look at something like a Bugani and it's just, it's not, it's not going to happen. You know, unless my numbers come up, no, but I'm not going to have the, even the chance to to everyone. But you say, it's that thing of these, they feel within reach somehow, and then that sort of, as you go through life, they're always sort of cars that remember, like the, when the latest Elise came out, and loving it Because it was at a price point where, even at the age I was, i could say, oh, yeah, one day that might be attainable. And, like you said, yeah. So it's the same with this Porsche. Oh, hang on Right, here we go. Coffee, live coffee delivery. This is great, god, coffee. Wait. Yes, there we go, get it Down with it.

Speaker 1:

There we go To the audience. I want to say this is really exciting that we're seeing, We're seeing Henry take delivery of this coffee, but actually what I'm looking at is a blank gray wall and Henry's vanished. There's movement, though, on the wall shadows.

Speaker 3:

Perhaps Here we go Coffee.

Speaker 2:

Should we do live?

Speaker 3:

unboxing. Let's do live unboxing. Let's do it. So this is this is so. I had some Kalana this morning from my local office And this is from Cast Iron, which is actually down by Goodwood. So anyone that goes to and give us festival speed or revival or something, they're just around the corner. So yeah, it's from Honduras.

Speaker 2:

Noted. This episode of Curb and Canyon is brought to you by Cast Iron Coffee, which is which is slightly different from James's normal.

Speaker 1:

What do you use in the in the Mr Fusion coffee maker? James, It's just an. Skafe international roast. What are we talking?

Speaker 2:

We call it Minnesota Brown.

Speaker 1:

Do you know what? Talking about those cheaper cars, Henry, do you think are we too obsessed with the GT stuff You know, for the average get? should we all just be aspiring to drive, you know, base Carreras or Carrera T's? are they on the road? actually a better proposition in some ways.

Speaker 3:

No, put it.

Speaker 2:

Sorry, base Carrera owners.

Speaker 3:

I would love to be able to sit here and say that you know it's, it's not the case, but GT stuff is irritatingly very, very, very good. That is not to say that you know and it's, but again, it's that kind of.

Speaker 1:

So can? can our clickbait headline be yeah, henry Katchapol says base Carrera rubbish.

Speaker 3:

No, it can't be. No because so it's and like. So here's the. Here's the part is a very good story about. We at Evo had sort of the sort of the dying days of the 997. There was a white cabriolet, manual on little wheels, with a red interior. It was about the most uneven sort of spec of 911 that you could possibly get and it stayed with us for quite some time, i think, because the press office actually forgot about it and we loved it. We absolutely. It was just one of those things you know little wheels, manual gearbox. It was fantastic. So would we have given the choice of the two of you sitting next to a GT3 in the car park? Can I hand on heart say I wouldn't have gone and driven the G3? No, but did we all absolutely love that white cab? Yes, we did. It was great. So it's it's. Yeah, i'd love to be honest here and say that No, you don't really need a GT3, but it's. You know 997, you know Gen 2, 3.8. No, it's not really all that kind of you know, you just just as well off with the bait. No, it's not true, but but there is something to be enjoyed. But I think that's kind of the lovely thing is. Like you say you get these cars and everybody starts sort of tweaking their cars with the air of making perhaps a little bit more like a G3. Or you get a bit here, do this, do that, and yeah it's, you don't. You don't have to have a GT3. I suppose that's the other way of looking at it, isn't it Sort of to make it a more positive spin on it. So yeah, there we go.

Speaker 1:

Just ask, James. All you need is stripes, right, James?

Speaker 2:

I was going to say stripes and a spoiler on the back. I don't know what you guys talking about. I have. I have never tried to make any of my cars look like the GT3.

Speaker 1:

The king of the mods. the king of the mods, henry, do you think you perhaps maybe have a little bit more inside of an inside line than than the rest of us do? Is? is Porsche heading in the right direction? Are they keeping on doing the right sort of stuff that, as enthusiasts, we want to see from them?

Speaker 3:

I think they generally are. I think it's a very difficult world generally that we're living in in terms of the automotive sense. I mean, yeah, okay, the fact that they still produce manual GT3s with naturally aspirated engines, you know they haven't gone chasing the big horsepower with GT3. Yeah, absolutely. You know. You look at the new naturally aspirated 4-litre engine in GT4, or even the GTS 4-litre. They're doing this right. Yeah, they're absolutely doing this right to that extent. And you drive stuff like the, even the Taycan. I did a film with Taycan GTS not long ago and it there's an awful lot of sort of. It seems to be so polarizing the whole EV thing, and I get it. You know I'm not about sitting here and saying that I suddenly love EVs because it's going to keep me in a job or something like that. You know I'm terrified of the fact when they all become EVs. But but having said that, driving Taycan GTS, it gives me some sort of hope because and it didn't initially I drove Taycan Terras on the launch did not like it at all. It just seemed to be doing that standard EV thing. All the things I'd hoped we would get from Porsche didn't seem to be there. It just seemed to be a rocket ship and a straight line, a bit kind of funky in the corners and you know it could accelerate faster than it stopped, which is not really a nice thing. And then eventually I drove the real drive version under a GTS and all those sort of Porsche things came, came back in again And the lovely steering feel and the balance and it just all the tactility and the car made up for another fact And they backed off the things like having a really nicely progressive throttle, so you didn't get all that from the EV drivetrain straight away. You could. You could meter it out on a decent road. So yeah, they put all that Porsche back into, which gives me hope for when they sort of go full EV for a sports car. But yeah, I think by and large, it's a tricky market. I think, porsche, they're not going to get it right all the time, but they haven't in the past either.

Speaker 2:

So by and large, yeah, you know that gives me a lot of hope, because I drove the Taycan Turbo and you know, was blown away by the power, but at the same time I felt like the car you know sort of been delivered to me without a soul And I kind of feel that Tesla is very, very much that way as well. I guess you know you think about digital technology and you think about, you know, that whole sort of realm you start thinking about. you know, black and white, on or off, binary, one and zero. But to hear that they can take an electric drivetrain like that and start to put the Porsche aspects of it back into the car, which they may have missed, intentionally or not, the first time around, that's fantastic, because that's one of the things that I really love about the petrol powered cars is just that sort of feeling that you need to work with the machine to get the best out of it. You're there as part of the experience. you're not just along for the ride, you're not just a passenger, you're really part of that particular drive in that particular moment and making every single part of the experience happen. You are a central part of that. the driver is a part of that.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, and I think the thing that is important to remember in all of that is that you need driver 911, yes, having the flat seat is a huge part of it, but so much of what we love about a 911 is not to do with the flat six, or at least not to do with necessarily the sound it makes or the way it pulls us up the road, it's position in the car, it's the steering feel that we'll talk about, it's the braking or the chassis moves, all those other things which have to be amplified even more in an electric car, for sure, but a big part of what makes us love a driver's car is still there in an EV. Yeah, we don't get the sound I'm not about to say that and, like I said, it sounds like I'm being a huge EV fanboy or something like that which I recognise the problems, but there has to be some sort of hope for these things and I think the GTA shows that it can be done.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, there's got to be a pathway forward, doesn't there? Yeah?

Speaker 3:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, porsche. Obviously they listen to our part every week. If you could take the opportunity to maybe give them some constructive feedback, what could they be doing differently?

Speaker 3:

So something I thought about for a while is I haven't driven the latest T yet. I have to build it at some point. But I think with the whole T thing I certainly thought with the previous ones it would be great if the T could be that proper but, yes, cheaper and make it absolutely sort of. You can only get it with a manual box actually. No, you could have PDK with it. Fair enough, you have that option in there, because I know not everybody can have a manual. So that seems wrong, to kind of. But fun to get your choice of gearbox, but it's on small wheels. You don't get sort of. They say this is the absolute driver's spec. If you want a Porsche 911 because you'd want to drive it, that's just what you want it for. You give it the manual aircon or whatever or sort of take a screen away, just strip it right back, and you cannot spec it up because obviously at the moment with a T you can spec it up to be something big or anything. You can't get cons around brakes on it. You can't do any of this stuff. It's the base model, so it's not a cheaper way into. You can almost make it sort of comfortable enough. But you know what I mean sort of unattractive enough to the casual Porsche that's going to walk in. That's not going to go for the start, so it just appeals to that. Make it the absolute grassroots 911 of the people that want one for driving. That would be my plea to them, i think.

Speaker 1:

Well, you heard it here first Porsche, but you know it's funny because I have that conversation with friends all the time and I reckon 60 to 70% of the T's that come up for sale in the Australian market at least on the second hand market I'm talking most of them are specced up PDK, sunroof, rear seats, like everything you know it's basically it goes back to being a Carrera S, but it's got a quasi special badge on it and that's fine. I mean, i don't begrudge anybody their spec choices on any car that they order and I've got You have, though you have really Absolutely.

Speaker 3:

You can jump in the seat, don't you? you kind of you see it.

Speaker 1:

You see it, but I would never say it. It's public.

Speaker 3:

You mutter it quietly, vaguely, within hearing distance. What was that? did you say something? did you say something again? no, no, no, no, no. Just cough something in the throat, back of the throat, nightmare.

Speaker 1:

Yes but look, we all do it right, but at the end of the day, like I say, everyone's entitled to their spec choices. but when the occasional one comes up where it's specced with no rear seats and no sunroof and it's manual, i think, yeah, that person got it right. Henry, tell me you've driven some of these amazing air cooled cars as well as the modern stuff, and how does it? how do those two experiences differ? and perhaps not just in purely subjective terms, but even just the feel you get from, say, an air cooled 911 versus, you know, some of the more modern stuff?

Speaker 3:

Oh, blimey, i suppose it's inevitably roura with the air cooled stuff. It's yeah, i suppose it's just that bit. A bit. Roura is the kind of you're going to sum it up into something that's your real sort of takeaway. But there is because there are so many other things going on as well that it's sometimes hard to take the two things that are apart, because there's that clear delineation from sort of there was such a step change with 996 onwards that to just sort of split into air cooled and kettles is kind of tricky in a way.

Speaker 1:

Do you think you you look for? because I've sort of driven both, obviously my cars a 964, i owned a GT4 for a little while and I always found that there were things to love in each experience that were sometimes similar but sometimes different. Right and in the 964, for example, when you're on it in the twisties you're moving every part of your body, both arms are involved, both feet are dancing. You know my friend Gerard talks about it's like playing the you're doing the bongo dance, versus in the GT4 where you've got rev matching, and It's not a better or worse experience, because then you're excited about the way it sounds, the tune in all those different things and it's just a. It's just a different experience that's equally as captivating in its own way.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, i think that's absolutely right, isn't it? It's a, as I say, it's that, and it's funny how perceptions change over time as well, obviously because the further we get away from those early watercool cars you know the nine or six is, the more we jump back into one of those now and kind of a lot of what you're saying about the, the air-cooled experience, actually now we find in that and you think, oh, this car's moving around a lot more and it's kind of, you know, it's as small as it is and kind of, so all that stuff is actually just migrating further up the food chain in terms of just pure and an age factor and the fact that cars got sort of bigger over over age. So, yeah, i think there's all sorts of that great, you know, shot is that of all the different 9-elevens over the years, with the sort of the, the rears of them or whatever that they produce, and it's just that you can see it right there, and the further ones go back down the line yeah it inevitably changes over time. Right.

Speaker 1:

It's interesting, isn't it? Because it's less. It's probably less about air-cooled, v-water-cooled, and not that I'm trying to perpetuate those sort of delineations and lines that we sometimes draw in the sand. But, as you say, i remember driving at a 991 for a period and getting out of that car and driving my friends 996 and thinking this car feels perfection, it's the perfect size, it's so nimble, so agile but has just that enough level of modernity in the drive. And, james, you've gone from 991 to 996. Yeah, and that car was supposed to be a project car. And look at you, you can't get rid of it.

Speaker 2:

I know just that's right. Every time I get into it I'm like, yeah, this is my car, i love it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, henry, the drives you've had, if we said Porsches that we've seen in your films, is there one that stands out? Is the one where you think?

Speaker 3:

that was epic. I mean I'm so lucky because there have been so many and so many different experiences. Like, say, i go back to the Boxster GTS on the Yorker, which just was something very special about that car, which again I think came back to some of the attainable nature of that. You're driving around thinking, yeah, one day maybe this could be, but it was such spectacular roads and we were up from World War II to long after sunset and it was with doing that job, with good friends as well Sam Riley and Dean Smith and you're there enjoying just the whole experience of that. You just drive obviously never on camera workshop 5001, that car. There was something about that that I absolutely loved, i hope you'd say that It's just such a cool car and so many people don't really know about workshop 5001, but it's, yeah, i don't know. Just I know it was very expensive and I think it got a lot of sort of flack in the comments about that. Because it was such an expensive car We went with a headline which is probably a bit sort of wrong in a way, but they're all all those things are particularly expensive and it was. I remember seeing it it was at the Quail week before and all the amazing stuff that's there and the Titan Safari kind of stuff. But it's just this little kind of unobtrusive, almost car with no great big wings, in quite an unassuming color and stuff like that. It was a bit of a sound of it, unbelievable. So yeah, i have very fond memories of that car, driving, say, some of the Tuthill rally cars, because I'm a rally boy, a heart, and I love, love rally cars, so that kind of always driving the RGT. And nothing makes me happy than finding another 906 or 997 rally car on YouTube and some onboard footage, so the chance to play it play it a bit. Doing that for a bit was, yeah, a lot of fun In terms of films. Weirdly, i think it's probably the one that makes that I'm probably proudest of is the is was not such a specifically Porsche, but also was. Was the manuals matter film that I did Classic And I keep thinking if I can try and do something like that again for Hagerty. So I might have to try and do it. But then recently on Hagerty we did the GT4 RS again out in the States, which was so much fun to see, meeting Lee Keane for the first time never met him before and a great bunch of guys and all the other cars that were there on the Smokies GT was. That was great. What a car park that was. So, yeah, i think manuals matter is special just because it felt like a different thing and a bit of a lioness and no, the awesome sort of made a film like that. So, yeah, that was, that was good.

Speaker 1:

I love that. I actually just watched it earlier and you know the little sequence with the coffee and the eyeball and all that stuff. It's actually, it's so well done And the way you explain it is it's just terrific, it's it's it's because it's hard to articulate why, what, what a manual gearbox brings to the experience, and not just because it's obviously not as quick as a PDK or something similar, but to explain what it actually adds to it. I think you did. You did such a great job. So, yeah, i'm glad that some of the films you mentioned are certainly some of my favorites. Henry, if we said we'll finish this up in a sec, if we said, day after tomorrow you can never drive another great road and never drive another Porsche, but tomorrow you can drive any Porsche on any road, anywhere, no cameras, just you and the car, where, what are you driving and where are you going?

Speaker 3:

Ah, i am going to drive, oh, i'm going to drive a 2.7 RS, because I've never driven one But I have been in one, i've been in the passenger seat and everything I know. So the people I trust I think it would be. I love the idea of a 2.7 RS daily beta. I think that's kind of that would be good. So maybe a little bit of light rally sort of prep in there as well, just to kind of sparse it up a bit, oh yeah. And then where am I driving? Oh, it's going to be Scotland, because I love Scotland. Oh nice, and, as I said, i went to university there and I always just feel I love the very that the rough and tumble nature of UK roads is, you know, i'm sure, the bane of many of the chassis engineers life, but when they make it work and Porsche by a large does seem to make it work it makes the roads so interesting and and gives you something to do. There's that little bit of a rally stage in there. So maybe, maybe it would be the road up through the cangons, the sort of the old military road which I still love And it's so yeah, yeah, 2.7 RS up in, up in Scotland. That'll be. That's my choice.

Speaker 1:

Nice, that's, that's, that's pretty good. Hey James, what about you? Turbo S straight to Chipotle.

Speaker 3:

Ah, chipotle, pretty much Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Give me, give me one of my straight roads in Minnesota and, you know, get me to McDonald's as quickly as possible.

Speaker 3:

The whole question was just that. It was literally. You don't care about my answer at all. It's just a set up Absolutely teed it up just to be able to deliver that line to James. That was a fair play, nicely done. Here's me. Instead of thinking, yeah, i put a load of reference, wow, i've picked well with a car, oh yeah. I wrote Oh, you're sitting in the seat. He's going to stop in a minute and then I'm just going to be able to deliver the line Here we are, you are.

Speaker 1:

Fair play, i'm not, i'm not going to sit here and take that.

Speaker 3:

I'm not actually the lines question. I'm going to have to stop this.

Speaker 1:

That that that question actually came. He's going to hate me for doing this, but it came from my friend, anthony. He said I said you got anything you want me to ask? And he couldn't think of anything. And I said oh, what about if you just say Anthony?

Speaker 2:

says hi and.

Speaker 3:

Henry, give him a shout out.

Speaker 1:

But then he said ask him favorite road, favorite car. So there you go. Fantastic. Well, henry, what an honor having you on the pod. Thank you for bringing a little bit of sophistication to an otherwise knuckleheaded pod. We run here at Kerber Canyon. It's pretty incredible.

Speaker 3:

There we go. Can I recommend a film of the week?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, Oh yeah, please.

Speaker 3:

Or film of the pod on one of it, And so it's actually one. It's slightly easier, I feel, but it's not one of mine, So I feel like I can say it. But it's on the Haggerty YouTube channel that they did the Porsche Le Mans film. It's about 45 minutes long and my friend over in the US, Matt, to chill out, I did it And if you haven't seen it, kind of you might have mentioned before. If you have, I'm sorry, I kind of know we haven't, But yeah it's. it's really really good. I sat there and thoroughly enjoyed that. So, yeah, I'd hardly recommend it.

Speaker 2:

Right, give it a go.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, great It's, it's beautifully done. You you heard it here First People the Le Mans film that Haggerty did. Yeah it is, It's brilliant, That's great.

Speaker 3:

Just lots of nice interviews aren't there? I think so. Lots of nice people. Yeah, yeah yeah, yeah, it's good, ok, yeah it is brilliant.

Speaker 1:

It is brilliant. Well, henry, we'll let you go and get on with your day again. Thank you so much for joining us here on Curb and Canyon. It's been an absolute pleasure, and if you're ever down in Australia, look us up, come driving with us, we'll do. Or if you're in Minnesota.

Speaker 2:

Yeah absolutely Cheers, henry, thank you.

Speaker 3:

It's been great Thanks. Thank you very much, guys. Thank you.

Speaker 1:

How good was that? I'm you know that, that thing about meeting your heroes and that whole thing. He was exactly as I thought he would be.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, very genuine. I just what a career you know I 20 years, the story you know, going back to university years and interning, and you know, trying to really make it happen for himself and the magazines, the cars, the people, the everything that he's done. Well, what a fantastic career and just what a what a really nice, genuine, genuine fella. Yeah, i really enjoyed that.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, same, same. And it's funny, isn't it? You think about all the work he's put into making that happen And you know. Then you got people like us who just put a camera in front of ourselves and say, hey, welcome to.

Speaker 2:

Hey, speak for yourself, son.

Speaker 1:

Well, anyway, that was, that was a massive treat. I hope you guys enjoyed listening to Henry as much as we enjoyed chatting with him. That was, yeah, that was that was a great experience. You know, James, that's one of the great things about this pod. You know, like I was thinking about this the other day It was. You know, you and me have never met yet. You're a really great mate. You know, it's just been something that's yeah, it's brilliant. I love it And through it, you know, you meet these people that you that you wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to connect with Just awesome.

Speaker 2:

Awesome, totally, yeah, absolutely, absolutely.

Speaker 1:

Well, thank you guys all for listening, as always. We genuinely appreciate it. Thanks for all the comments on Insta and the DMs and the like. It's unreal. Please, if you're not already, follow us Kerbin Canyon on Instagram, james Auto amateur on Instagram and YouTube, and me, andy last rasp, on Instagram and YouTube. I think that's all the handles we need to mention, no.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, maybe Joey Trippiani at TotalLone11.com, i don't know.

Speaker 1:

Well, actually, and check, well obviously, follow Henry Catchpal on on Instagram and then Haggerty on YouTube. He's not doing the car section stuff anymore, but if you haven't checked out his films, obviously, please do that. And we will also link to Henry's suggested video of the week. How's that? He did a video of the week.

Speaker 2:

I love it. Yeah, just totally jumping in with both feet. That's awesome. All right, guys, we'll see you in another pod soon.

Speaker 1:

See you again.

Interviewing Henry Catchpole for the Pod
Transition From Writing to Video Content
Creating Cinematic Car Videos
The Thrill of Driving a Porsche
The Future of Electric Sports Cars
Porsche 911 Driving Experiences and Specs
Cars and Roads With Henry Catchpole