AEC Land Rover Test Drive Is Most Fun & Terrifying Yet

Don't look down! Photo by Leslie Wylie. Don't look down! Photo by Leslie Wylie.

I’ve done Land Rover test drives before. Teeter-totter bridges, narrow tunnels, hanging sideways off the side of a mound … yeah, it’s a bit unnerving, but unless you commit a pilot error of EPIC proportions (see The Great Rolex Land Rover Test Drive Incident of 2010) you’re probably just going to walk away with an adrenaline rush and an urge to go purchase one yourself.

But even the most high-mileage test driver will get a thrill out of the test drive course here at the 2016 American Eventing Championships. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to drive off the edge of an actual cliff, this is your chance.

This Land Rover is attempting to go UP the slope the test drive goes down -- intrepid! Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Or up an actual cliff — intrepid! Photo by Leslie Wylie.

“Step off the brake completely,” commands my driving instructor Christina in a calm voice as our Range Rover dangles off the precipice. I watch a horse navigate the Training coffin somewhere far below us — at least my death bed has a nice view.

“Are you sure?” I ask, the first of several high-pitched squeals that will emerge from somewhere deep inside my being over the next few seconds.

If you’re at the AECs and haven’t already test driven a Land Rover, put it on your to-do list! These vehicles just keep getting smarter and smarter, which means we keep getting to do cooler and scarier things with them.

For junior thrillseekers, there’s a mini Land Rover obstacle course set up at the entrance next to the General Store (which is where grown-ups can sign up for their test drives between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. through Sunday).

Visit the TIEC website for more information and a fun video of Boyd Martin taking one for a spin.

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Sorry Chinch, you've still got to be able to reach the steering wheel. Maybe next year there will be a mini mini Land Rover test drive course? Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Sorry Chinch, you’ve still got to be able to reach the steering wheel. Maybe next year there will be a mini-mini Land Rover test drive course. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

On behalf of the eventing community, we want to extend a heartfelt thank you to Land Rover for its continuing support both of the AECs and our sport at large. Go Land Rover, and go eventing!

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Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

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