Perhaps the best way to get to know someone is to take a road trip with him. Some conversation, a little music and a long stretch of asphalt can form an enduring bond between travel companions. Settle in and buckle up; we’re hitting the road with Peter Budaj
Leaving from Montreal, what would be your destination for a road trip?
I’m not sure. I’d have to ask my friend Google to find me some nice mountain roads. Something like Pikes Peak in Colorado. There’s a place in Montana like that too, where you can appreciate the view and experience the car you’re driving. I’d look for a good road and not just for a good destination.
Would who your co-pilot be?
I’d bring my wife and my son with me. Though they might not like it too much if I drive the way I’d way to. With them in the car with me, I’d be a lot more careful.
And if you could bring a teammate?
Someone from the team? I’m not too sure. The guys don’t like to ride with me too much. Maybe Tomas Plekanec, or Carey Price. He has a big truck so I could show him what a sedan can do.
What vehicle would you use?
Anything, as long as it has a manual gearbox and is fast. I love playing with the clutch and shifting gears. Most of the time I have cars with four-wheel drive, so I’d pick a rear-wheel drive car for this, they’re a bit more fun to drive. BMW makes great cars. The Audi R8 is great. Ferraris don’t come with a clutch anymore; they have paddle shifters behind the wheel. I want to really control the car.
What would the theme song on your road trip?
I don’t know. I usually like to make a mix and go, but I’d probably let my travelling companion pick the music. It wouldn’t bother me.
What kind of car games would you play?
I know lots of people do that, but I’ve never tried it. Picking car colors or something like that, it doesn’t really appeal to me. My co-pilot would have to come up with something.
What kind of snacks would you bring?
Non-alcoholised beverages. Maybe non-alcoholic beer since I enjoy beer. Or something exotic, an Asian drink or something like that.
Are you more inclined to put the pedal to the metal, or to drive on cruise control?
It’s a bit easier to go pedal to the metal on straight lines. Pushing the car full-throttle through corners is a bit risky.