#85 Craig Marchant
First of all I would like to congratulate you on adding another little member to your family and also prior to that winning the English championship at Yarmouth stadium, how has the last year gone for you on track?
Thank you very much, it’s been a good few weeks on and off the track. The past year has been a bit of a mixture but obviously delighted to have won the English. We started the year off the blues and with lots more cars on Track, it was a learning curve trying to work our way through. We are still learning about the car and set ups so each meeting we were trying things and sometimes it worked and others it didn’t. We also got tangled up a few times but that is par for the course with contact racing! It all seemed to click at the English and we managed to battle our way to victory.
Looking ahead to the National championship you are up there with several that have done well this year, it must give you confidence, will you approach this differently to any other meeting?
Well in terms of my approach on track, no it will be the same. the format of the race and grid means all the top drivers will be at the sharp end so I’m expecting a fast start and will try to settle down early and pick off some places! We haven’t raced since the English due the new arrival so the car is as it came off the track, a full check next week and we are good to go.
What is your racing background, Have you or your family been involved with any other motorsport before you started racing Mini super twos?
I have always loved motorsport and have been going to short ovals mainly at Spedeworth since I was 5 so so 30 years! My dad raced sidecars and then the very early version of stock rods but not for long. I started minis when I was 12 but ended up on the grass at Wimbledon twice without doing a full lap and didn’t think I was going to be any good so gave them car to my sister and that was it for my short racing career! Looking back that was when there used to be 30 plus minis at Wimbledon so I was probably a bit harsh on myself being just 12! Fast forward two years ago and I saw mini super twos on Facebook and decide to hire a car from John!
How did your fist meeting go in a hire car and what were your first impressions? Do you feel that things have changed from back when you started to now?
First impressions were really good, John met me and put me at ease, explained everything and gave me a few tips. It was clear from the outset that it was a friendly formula with plenty of drivers coming to say hello and asking if I needed anything! We started at the back as all hire cars do and our aim was to finish all three races which we did, by the last race I didn’t get lapped which was progression, and I came off the track smiling! I was pretty hooked from then on and did another two hire cars before purchasing a second hand car. I think the formula has progressed within the short time I have been involved, numbers have improved with several 20 plus meetings this year, l think the level of car prep has improved and of course John has made some good tweaks to the cars to make them perform better and easier to maintain.
Family has always been a really important focus for the formula and you and your family have fitted in very well, so just for fun now, if you could pick any driver from any formula past or present, who would you really like to see driving a Mini Super Two?
Great question! I will go for one in the present - Chris Haird, I think he is one of the best drivers the ovals have seen and would be great to see him out there with us.
It would definitely be interesting to see #115 in a contact formula. Best of luck in the National Championship, just before we let you go, are there any sponsors or people that you would like to give a shout out too?
Firstly my wife Amanda for supporting my decision to start racing at such a late stage, my Dad who is chief mechanic and helps me massively, my Sister Hayley and her husband Rob who have helped keep me on track! TIW Fabrications, Nutdust and also Jimmy Morris from 1300’s who has helped me with some welding and advice! Lastly to the Smith family for putting so much into the formula and giving a lot of people the opportunity to be on track when so many other formulas may be out of reach!
Thanks Craig and best of luck at Aldershot in the big race.