The incredible roads of Thailand provide more than just stimulation for Curves creator Stefan Bogner as his breath is literally taken away by a driving experience second to none. As with all magnetic anecdotes, the sentimental value provides a perfect beginning which in this case is Bangkok, Thailand’s capital.
A man jumps into his Porsche and sets off to see his friend where they sit and chat when, at some point, the Porsche driver throws the key to his 911 to his friend’s son. “Fetch some drinks,” he says with a grin. Young Sihabutr Xoomsai could hardly believe his good fortune as he unlocks his automotive dream and drives off into the sunset.
The youngster goes by the name Tenn and went on to organise southeast Asia’s first Porsche meeting in 2016, called “Das Treffen” (The Gathering). A German name that is short and sweet, and says it all. It contains a certain sympathy for the unembellished nature of the German language, as well as recognising the German-ness of the Porsche brand – and of course, the name says exactly what it’s all about.
As the size and success of Das Treffen continued to grow, Curves creator Stefan Bogner couldn’t resist the temptation to see it for himself. He booked a flight to Bangkok – and was utterly stunned.
“Das Treffen is a force of nature, both global and regional at the same time, a melting pot of the most diverse car stories and biographies, a moving reminder of the binding, equalising, the democratic effect of the Porsche brand. And a festival of friendship. It is exactly the same as the idea behind Curves”.
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Following his visit to Bangkok, his plans were to return and liaise with Tenn, the Renndrive gang and the Porsche community of southeast Asia. After the 2018 Treffen, a Curves-style extension was given highest priority with a road trip in northern Thailand, out of Bangkok and then into the mountains.
A few days later, it was clear that one of the next issues of Curves would definitely take place in Thailand with a trip that would embrace everything southeast Asia could offer. Total immersion, with no going back.
“During the production of the magazine, we moved our lives to Thailand for several weeks and drove 4,700 miles – a good 3,000 of them on roads that were unbelievably intense and emotional, full of surprises and our favourite thing in the world – curves.
“We would also like to thank Porsche Asia Pacific, Porsche’s regional office for Asia Pacific in Singapore, for allowing us to abduct the new Porsche Taycan Turbo for a few days in Bangkok.
“They took good care of us in the way that only real friends do and showed us their version of road-tripping. Travelling in Thailand; on a magical journey so uniquely alien, yet, because of you, strangely familiar.
“These amazing guys did things for us behind the scenes of which we remain blissfully unaware to this day. And the many wonders of which we are aware bring a great big lump to the throat. You have our love, you have our friendship, you have our respect. The same also applies, of course, to our families and friends at home. We go, just have to go, but we always return. You are the destination of every journey. Thousands of miles long.”
Photos: Stefan Bogner
Text: Ben Winter
“Curves 12: Thailand” is available for purchase via this link.
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