Georges B. Ramirez – Senior Editor

Looking Back

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A decade has passed and the paradox of time still plays with me. On the one hand it seems like it was just yesterday when Kenny, Kevin, and Carl were here at the club talking to my Dad and I and yet in reality, so much time has passed.

In 2002, ten years ago, I remember Kenny, Kevin, and Carl talking to us about their new venture of putting together a car magazine (like no other) in the Philippines in the hope of setting higher standards equivalent or similar to well-read or well-known international magazines. And that’s exactly what they did… At that time I declined to join the company as I’d never been much of a writer or reader and so recommended my brother, Kookie, who was the avid reader…

Nonetheless, I remember the first issue, and I thought “Wow! This is really nice!” It was the best I had ever seen locally. I remember expressing as much to Kenny then, and although already good at that time, they felt they wanted to improve on the quality of their print. I’ve noticed though that the quality of the articles or topics have also improved over time. I remember the first comparo we did 1600 cars in Subic where I was one of the drivers. It was really neat! I hadn’t done anything in that scale before. It was so much fun! Not just the driving but simply being in the company of the C! staff – most especially Kevin and James.

It’s an all-day activity where we wake up early in the morning to catch the good lighting of dusk and test the cars in a methodical manner. We would then analyse the technical aspects thoroughly and call it like it is without sugar coating it… Forcing consumers and the industry to take us seriously and be a voice to be reckoned with. If a car didn’t have ABS for example, we would all know about it and manufacturers would be forced to do something about it.

Borrowing a car to test drive wasn’t really the norm then. We would have to resort to borrowing privately owned cars. We had to believe in ourselves and persevere as one often does when you believe in something and desire to attain greater standards or goals.

When I came on board after Kookie’s passing… I realized that it wasn’t just about looking cool behind the wheel and test driving vehicles… Everyone most especially our bosses work really hard to get the fine quality results we achieve and demand that we continue to improve, evolve, and push the envelope… We set the standard… We are leaders as opposed to followers…an aspect that has hit home with me and pushes me to be better at my job and give my best …

If the past decade has been any indication of how exciting working with C! is, then I can only look forward to the next ten years and more…