The Tank has rarely been described as backwards in coming forwards, but then we've always subscribed to the view a firm pat on the buttocks is a wholly appropriate way to say "job well done" to colleagues. Not to mention waiters, workmen, and that nice lady who once gave us directions to Montmatre.
We're told to "back off" mystifyingly often, but in many situations have found our pace of retreat simply isn't up to what seems to be expected and have been hastened on our way by the occasional flying plate or dog-eared copy of Rough Guide to Paris.
Fortunately, the good people at Nissan clearly sympathise and have now used an all-electric LEAF to clock up the hastiest retreat ever recorded - outside of this year's Budget commitments, of course.
On Sunday, professional stunt driver Terry Grant reversed a mile up the famous Goodwood hill-climb course in a world record 1m 37.02s, recording a healthy average speed of 55mph - which, we couldn't help but notice, is far faster than any Gendarme in a 2CV.
Clearly enjoying rocking down to electric avenue as much as his namesake, Grant had had two previous attempts at the weekend's Festival of Speed, ultimately shaving 26 seconds off the time he recorded on Friday.
"The only complaint I have is slight neck ache from constantly looking over my shoulder," he mugged afterwards, proving once again why so few stuntmen have made the leap into comic acting.
Now if you'll excuse us, we'll try to thumb Grant down and reverse our way out of here - the guy we "congratulated" on making such an excellent sandwich this lunchtime looks a dab hand with that ladle.
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