I thought I would introduce you to one of my passions, as some of you know I am a massive fan of motorsports, mainly Formula 1 but also British Touring Car Championship and World Endurance Championship. Before 2014, I had never attended a motorsports championship at Silverstone, a circuit that I constantly drove past whenever I went to my uncle’s.
It wasn’t until I saw Silverstone advertising their Race Maker program that I thought, I should definitely apply for that! It would be a dream come true if I attended an event at Silverstone, I know I lived six hours away and couldn’t drive but I thought why not. You never know unless you apply. My mum threw all sorts of questions at me when I told her I wanted to apply, like how will you get there, where will you live?
I just replied saying, I might not even get it. When I received that email to say can I travel to Silverstone to have an interview, I was over the moon, straight away telling dad that he needs to take me to Silverstone. It also meant my first time visiting Silverstone would be with my dad, who also wanted to visit the circuit but never had free time with his job. Trying to drive from the main gate to the Wing took forever!
It did feel that sooner or later we would just appear on the circuit, I kept asking dad if we were going the correct way. Of course, I wouldn’t be writing this if I didn’t pass the interview, something I thought would never happen, as I was only working part-time and still in full-time education! What skills did I have that would make me a good candidate, there must have been something.
I will never forget the joy I had when I received that good news, I know I made dad feel very jealous! The Silverstone Race Maker program was set up in 2013, it is a program made up of passionate volunteers who all come from different backgrounds and nationalities. Some of us have a passion for motorsports, whereas some of us just like volunteering.
You’re probably thinking what is a Race Maker, well the easy way to describe it would be we’re the friendly face of Silverstone. We need to be approachable people so visitors of Silverstone know they can approach us for anything. Currently, there are two job roles, Customer Services and Grandstand Steward, these are pretty self-explanatory really and I’m lucky enough to be able to do both roles.
These past four years have been amazing and something I would treasure always. I can’t explain how lucky I am, especially now that my dad does it as well. Since I started I have attended four British Grand Prix, two British Touring Car Championship, the Moto GP, World Series by Renault and World Endurance Championship.
I would love to attend more events within the year but the timings have not been correct, but now I only live 45minutes away, I think I’m definitely going to be attending more. Throughout the four years, there are definitely a lot of memories I will always treasure, first up it will be all the drivers I have met who are all very friendly and even talkative.
My favourite driver I have met must be the most smiley man I know Daniel Ricciardo who currently races for Red Bull Racing in Formula 1. I support Daniel every single race weekend and if I could, I would talk for hours with him as he’s soo friendly. At the 2014 British Grand Prix, I met Jules Bianchi who sadly lost his life after an accident at the Japanese Grand Prix later that season.
This is something I would treasure always as to this day, I still can not believe I met him! Another driver I was lucky to meet was Max Chilton during the World Endurance Championship, I managed to get access to Nissan’s hospitality after asking one of the team members if Max was inside. He just replied saying you won’t be able to grab anything from inside, I was only interested in meeting Max.
I was a little worried about approaching him but when he said yes to a photo and was really friendly, my nerves faded away! The reason I love being a Race Maker is that you are a part of a massive family, I have met some amazing people through this scheme, some I would even call good friends. A lot of people are quite surprised to hear that I don’t get paid to be a Race Maker.
We are all volunteers and we are there because we love it. This is the main reason I do it, you are always meeting new people and the visitors are really good fun, if you get along with them, then you’ll be fine! You’ve got to be a very good people person. I also love it that no day is the same, every day I’ve been a Race Maker it’s different from the previous.
I know there’s a lot of you out there that love motorsports or even just love volunteering if this is something that appeals to you, you should definitely apply! I’m telling you in advance about this scheme, with the opening date not being until next year because you need to get in early and shine as the scheme is becoming more and more popular each year.
You can keep up to date over on their official website with more information or even on their Twitter and Facebook.
I hope you have enjoyed this post! I hope I’ve been able to describe the scheme well enough and I hope I haven’t made too many of you jealous. I know the people I speak about this would love to do it themselves.