My first encounter with the Mazda RX-8 was on a special handling course set up around the paddock area of the Laguna Seca racetrack, Monterey, California.
It was January 2003 and the long-lead media event seven months before the first cars arrived in the UK.
Working on a publication dealing with company cars, the idea of a £20,000 genuine four seater that looked like the RX-8 seemed impossible. I couldn’t believe my luck.
Being an Emap staffer, I was called in to help a colleague with a secret twin-test.