If you’re thinking of entering the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship, then you may not realise that they put all of the races on Motorsport TV and broadcast them on YouTube. At Cadwell Park, I made it on to the podium for the first time. So, my first time on camera, with a mike stuck in front of me. As you will see, I was quite pleased with my start! Next time, I get up there, I’d better mention Car Magic, my sponsors (…advice from my Sponsorship Manager/Dad). How did I do?
I’m still recovering from the shock! A second place and a podium in my second race at Cadwell Park in the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship. For the second race, I was starting in 3rd place. I knew this would be my first chance at a podium and I had to take it. Before the race I was really calm, with the boys from AB Motorsport around, ready to help with anything. Olly and Tony Allwood came down to give me support and advice on how to handle the pressure. With a red flag ending the Porsche race before mine, another 20 minutes was put onto
The weekend really started for me a week before on the Wednesday, as I had my first track day at Cadwell. I wasn’t happy with both my performance & the car’s performance at Snetterton so wanted to get ahead of the game for the next round at Cadwell Park. The first track day went well with no hiccoughs and with me acclimatising to the circuit. Skip forward one week and I’m back on the Thursday before the race for another track day. As I was now used to the track, I could be more committed through some of the more demanding corners on the circuit,
Cadwell Park is one of the most technical and challenging race circuits in the UK , set in the Lincolnshire Wolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It’s on a scenic par with Spa Francorchamps and Anglesey. But, keep your eyes on the track, not the scenery. It’s also a track with its own weather ecosystem, as I found out this week. Mist…. a weather phenomenon caused by small droplets of water suspended in air… greets me at Cadwell Park. It’s not great news when cars arrive for a track day or a testing day. But, eventually after a 1.5 hour wait, the track is open.
Berkhamsted based graphic designer, Katy Etherington, has done a great job working on the livery design and implementing the Car Magic branding. It’s going to look (car) magic. Wanting to keep things local, I called on Amber Signs, a specialist in vehicle livery and decals, also based in Berkhamsted. So, a trio of Berkhamsted based expertise…. Car Magic, my sponsor, for bodywork and repairs, Katy Etherington for graphic design and Amber Signs for vehicle decal production. Now…. We just need to get the livery onto the car. The plan is to get the car dressed at Cadwell Park….. but we’re on a very tight
Race 2… get it into gear! For race 2B, I started 14th. My start was a lot better. My starting position left me in a group of cars wanting to fight for every inch of circuit. The race consisted of a tough but fair battle throughout the race. I managed to break away from this mid-pack. However, half a lap later, coming onto the Bentley Straight, I missed 3rd to 4th, as the gear would just not go in, and then lost the positions I’d gained! I got them back and finished 11th. I’d gained positions but not enough in my opinion. Not third time
Qualifying… where are the brakes! I felt good & confident going into qualifying as I’d driven Snetterton before and I’m familiar with the circuit. However, it was braking into the second hairpin (Agostini) where my confidence in the brakes all but vanished. I braked where I had braked before when driving the circuit, and where others were braking… but the car didn’t stop. I went straight on at the hairpin and re-joined the track. I kept at it with a car that wasn’t up to it for the session, having to brake earlier than everyone else; the brakes just weren’t performing. So a very disappointing
My bodywork and livery sponsor, Car Magic, have done some great work on the car in recent weeks. Some new body panels have been installed. They’ve sorted out the dings (I only added one at the Brands Hatch meeting!). And the care now has a pristine look with a respray. The Car Magic designer is working on the livery design, and after this weekend’s Snetterton meeting, we’ll be applying decals and vinyls to the car to implement the new design. I’m thinking hypergold rims…
In race 2, I started 7th on the grid again, as the result you get in the previous race is where you start for the next race. I was happy with this as I would be starting in the same place, also on the inside again. The field completed the warm up lap again, and we lined up again for the race start. This time, I focused on getting a better start. The lights went out, and my start was much better. I immediately gained a position off the start line. I again carried the inside line down the hill through Paddock. Coming down to
We arrived at Brands Hatch on the Saturday morning, having had a get together the night before with the AB Motorsport crew. Having signed on for the first time, I made my way down to the team’s garage. My nerves had actually been quite calm in the time leading up to the weekend, with just a feeling of apprehensiveness creeping in. This all changed when I saw my car, with all its BRSCC and new AB Motorsport stickers looking ready to take the weekend on. The sight of the car got me excited for the weekend, and raring to the go. I was allocated to
Motorsport isn’t cheap! So, it was great news today when Car Magic agreed to come on board as my bodywork and livery sponsor for the 2018 BRSCC MX-5 Championship! They will be handling all the bodywork and paintwork needs. I am incredibly thankful to them for their support and really excited about Car Magic as a sponsor. Let’s hope I don’t have too many prangs this season! They will give the race car its new look, and fix a few of the dents that I have inherited from the previous owner. Having agreed that they can have a half share on the the car, in terms of
A wet track day at Snetterton…. The weekend started with me driving up the night before, and meeting with the guys from AB Motorsport. We had a laugh and a few drinks to calm the nerves before tomorrow’s test day. The morning came, and I headed to Snetterton. The AB Motorsport crew had already left to set everything up. After a brief and rather fast encounter with an Aston Martin Vanquish (…which who would’ve guessed, was going to Snetterton too) I arrived. The crew already had the car up in the air for the new differential to be installed. After a seemingly longer than usual
This was the first time I had visited Rockingham Motor Speedway for an actual track day. I had been to the venue three times before, all for car control days, one, in particular, being a Learn2Drift day run by Andy Arnott. The morning started with the car lift for the lorry playing up… that’s sod’s law, when you need to get your car out on the track. So we had to do the sighting laps in my Dad’s Mk3. After the sighting laps were complete, I was ready to finally get out on track in the race car. I had my new tyres fitted and
Meaning clothing wise! Track days are cheap when it comes to dress code. Take a helmet, maybe some gloves… jeans and a tee shirt and you’re sorted. But go racing and you’re in a different world of motorsport style. The “what to wear when you go racing” thing gets a bit pricey. You can spend more on the gear than you have on the car! Helmet, Hans device, race suit, race boots, gloves, flameproof undies etc etc. It all adds up. A pre-season trip to the AutoSport International show got me sorted and was a good place to go to get a discounted package price
…which is better than I did in my regular driving test.To be honest, it’s probably pretty hard to fail your ARDS test. The test itself is fairly straightforward. A written session followed an on-track assessment. Provided you drive within your limits and don’t do anything dumb, you’ll pass. My test day was at Brands Hatch with MSV. I invested in an hour on track with an instructor, before the test, as the test car was an unfamiliar front wheel drive Peugeot. I’m a rear wheel drive man and a Quattro man when it comes to Audi. I also had to pass a medical. My NHS