Ever since I saw Nigel Mansell go around the outside of Nelson Piquet at the end of the Hanger Straight at Silverstone In 1987, I knew what I wanted to do when I was older…
My love of cars started when I was about 4 years old when at Christmas I got a scalextric with the Cars being Mini’s. It was the best present ever and I used to annoy everyone in the house because I used to squeeze the track into the living room which was tiny and then hit my Sisters feet with the cars as they flew off the track. Every Christmas I can guarantee that I have had something to do with Cars bought for me, from remote control rally cars to air fresheners for my car.
My Dad, Dennis, worked as a Truck Driver for a local firm and every last Friday in the Month he took me in his truck with him all around the country and let me change gear all the way there and back! My mum Joan, worked for the NHS as a Secretary up the Road and at the weekends they formed a band called T-Junction, which they still are in. My Dad is on the Bass Guitar and my mum is the Lead Singer with a Drummer, Keyboard Player and a Guitarist. I still go and watch when they are on local Pubs with my mates. I have been watching them now for 14 years and they seem to get better with age! (I hope they don’t read this!).
In early January 1985, my Dad and I were driving back from visiting some of his Friends, when on a notorious bend somebody misjudged the corner and hit our car head-on. In the days of no seat belts in the back, I was launched into the windscreen resulting in a 2 inch scar across my forehead but surprisingly no broken bones and a couple of days in Hospital. My Dad wasn’t so lucky, he was trapped in the car for several hours as Emergency Crews tried to cut him out as the steering wheel and engine had wedged him in. He lost all his front teeth and broke his ribs. He was in intensive care for a week and we were very lucky to get out alive. After the car accident I was fascinated even more by four wheels, constantly glued to the T.V on a Sunday afternoon to watch the Grand Prix, while my mates played footie in the park.
In School I was well known as being a car nerd, as it was all I ever talked about. I even used to list Car Registration Numbers, Makes and Models, then put them in a file. Any projects at school that you were allowed to pick the theme, it was always on cars. When I moved up to Senior School nothing changed in the way of what I liked most, even though girls challenged, they still come in a distant second. While I was doing my paper round and reading about Nigel Mansell sailing towards his first and only World Championship in ‘92, I was dreaming of passing my driving test in five years time.