I leant that you don't need a huge amount of power. The 70ish horsepower Quantum could (just) keep up with the Elises on the tight twisty roads because the roadholding & brakes are good. On the more open A roads they could accelerate harder out of the bends & gain a couple of seconds on each corner & I would slowly drop behind. Of course on a road with no traffic or a race track I wouldn't even see which way they'd gone, but that's not where we were driving.
I learnt that you don't need to pay a load of money, I probably paid way too much for the Quantum at £1400 (but it was local when I needed it) & while it was practically undrivable when I collected it, it hasn't cost much at all to put it mostly right.
I learnt that no matter how good it is, I still prefer rear wheel drive.
I learnt that even in Wales, even in September, the weather can be fantastic.
But mostly I learned that a journey is made by the people you go with.