Ambassador Kelly reviews the new Renault Megane Estate

Renault Ambassador and under fire Louth GAA boss Colin Kelly reviews his second car of the year, the Renault Megane Estate.

A man in my position, an Ambassador, needs to be seen in a car that people respect. That’s why I brand ambass for Renault. Players won’t respect their manager if they arrive in a better car. Sure, we lost some gifted players who wouldn’t downgrade their cars but that’s their prerogative. Playing for your county involves sacrifice. GAA has always been like that.

The first thing that caught my eye about my new Renault Megane Estate was neither the sleek exterior nor the bespoke leather interior fashioned from the hides of Donn Cúailnge’s descendents. It was a small detail – the chilled central storage console with it’s deceptively comfortable armrest. I challenge anyone to deny that it is the perfect place to keep everyday items like pens and Ferrero Rocher. Sometimes during a game one of my assistants will ask to use my pen and they’ll comment on how cool it feels, which is a reflection on my management style – cool under pressure but with the right brain temperature to make informed, decisive decisions. A good manager is reflected in his pens.  The Renault Megane Estate helps me maintain those high standards.

I like to think that a car reflects her driver so I was naturally drawn to the Megane’s intelligent and intuitive technology system. Equipped with front and rear parking distance control it is ideal for getting out of tight corners and it’s an awful pity we didn’t have this technology available to us in Division Three so it is. As a modern-day manager I’m open to using knowledge from different industries if I think they will help. And the Megane’s Hill Start Assist™ will certainly give us an edge in Division Four next season. You see, when you are on a slope and release your brake, your car stays immobile for several seconds, giving you time to set off without rolling backwards. We need a good start to the new campaign and from what I’ve seen, none of our rivals’ managers have access to the Megane.

In terms of storage all I can say is ‘Optimum Modular Layout’. Superb in every respect. I’ve already sent all my senior championship medals to the designers as a mark of my respect and admiration. You can get a big Aldi shop in there and still have ample space for a load of O’Neill’s balls and a half forward line of under 11s if the bus company lets you down a half hour before an away game.

Like Louth, the 1.5 litre turbo diesel engine does splutter a wee bit until it gets going, but once she’s on a roll there’s generally no stopping her until you hit Sligo, Fermanagh, Limerick, Tipperary or Armagh. The engineers responsible for the Megane’s deluxe Tomtom® system assure me that there shouldn’t be too much trouble navigating through Antrim, Waterford, Wicklow or Carlow though they do expect to iron out a few glitches on the roads to London, Wexford and Leitrim as the season progresses.

Me myself I’m a man of habit, a wee bit superstitious truth be told so I avoid third and fourth gears as they bring negative connotations to the driving experience. Generally I motor along in first or second – that’s where Louth football should be. It focuses the mind. As soon as I have confirmation that there is no Division Five or Six I’ll employ the rest of the six speed manual gearbox but not before – we’ve fallen victim to inaccurate information too often of late for my liking.

Reversing isn’t in my vocabulary. It means going backwards. As Louth manager I’m focused on what’s in front of me, not what’s gone before so the Renault engineers kindly removed the reverse gear at my behest. I’ve no time for it. Those who know me know fine well that the only place I want to see negative thoughts is in the rearview mirror so it is.

What I like about the Megane Estate is that it is easily modifiable and my staff at Renault are very understanding. Naturally as a top manager and diplomat I’m given the highest spec available but I did have to get the rear doors welded shut as any reference to the numbers, ergo divisions three or four upsets me. Some people might look at me and say ‘But Your Excellency, your car has four wheels!’ but I don’t listen to the naysayers. Haters gonna hate. People always fear what they don’t understand and the supporters especially, do be too quick to judge. Often what they see on the outside doesn’t reflect what goes on under the chasse of a well-oiled car. By car I mean inter-county team and by chasse I mean dressing room. There’s a spare wheel in the boot and four plus one equals five the last time I looked.

Keeping up to speed with technology is part of every Ambassador’s (not to mention inter-county manager’s) duties. So you can imagine my delight when I worked out how to use the revolutionary dual zone climate control which is optimized for your thermal comfort. Basically you can create your own weather system in the car itself which is great for keeping your frozens cool or piping up the heat when Weather With You comes on LMFM. You can even set different temperatures between the front seats and the back seats. Again, great as a first aid tool if you need to keep a player’s ankle cold on the way to A & E after a bad sprain but maintain room temperature in the cockpit for clearness of thought and correct decision making on the road.

I, Ambassador Kelly, endorse this car. Everyone should buy one.