I arrived at the Denver airport pretty shattered after three days in Europe with way too much fine food and way too little sleep.
It didn't help that I was left stranded in the freezing cold snow storm waiting for the shuttle bus with only a light summer jacket.
Under my breath I swore as I looked at the snow covered MAZDASPEED3 Sport waiting to take me home.
Next week I would get the vastly more snow-worthy Range Rover LR4 to drive, but today's weekly drive was the wickedly fast MAZDASPEED3 Sport.
Somehow the thought of 263 horsepower clawing at the ice snow covered ground through only the front wheels and summer high performance tires didn't fill me with confidence as I started the car for home.
Heck, I only had about an hour of spring Denver snowstorm, and of course an hour of Denver traffic between me and my bed.
Thank goodness the car came with a snow scrapper.
After cleaning off as much snow as possible I hit the start button and set my sights for home and a warm bed for my jet lagged body.
Immediately the traction control warning light lite up like a Christmas tree on Christmas eve.
The Mazda's turbo gasped for the thin Denver air and front tires did their best to grab as much traction as possible given all that power and all that snow.
I merged onto the highway tentatively and after a few minutes I started to feel confident. Perhaps this was a better snow car than I had imaged or perhaps (my jet legged brain reasoned) driving a 500 plus HP Lamborghini in Italy had taught me how to handle a car like an except with cat-like driving reflexes.
You can watch me have way too much fun in Italy behind the wheel of brand new Lambo HERE.
Anyway, I practically flew home passing cars on the snow covered roads at will.
I was "the man" and I had tamed the classic red fire-breathing Mazda with ease in conditions that would make any normal driver cringe with terror.
It wasn't until the next day as I once again scraped the snow from the car (see before and after photos) that I realized that my super human driving skills were pretty average after all.
You see it wasn't the driver that piloted the car home safely, but the tires.
On the way home I had just assumed that the MAZDASPEED3 was equipped with high performance summer tires.
The car instead had high performance snow tires and my amazing drive home through the snow-covered and wolf-infested high plains was made easy by the latest in winter tire technology.
Oh well, at least I had managed to drive the Lambo without careening into an Italian Gelato Cafe.