FORMER LE MANS WINNER SMITH RETURNS TO HIS KARTING ROOTS FOR CHARITY 2003 Le Mans 24 Hour sportscar race winner Guy Smith competes in a Celebrity Karting Challenge event at Autosport International at the National Exhibition Centre in...
FORMER LE MANS WINNER SMITH RETURNS TO HIS KARTING ROOTS FOR CHARITY
2003 Le Mans 24 Hour sportscar race winner Guy Smith competes in a Celebrity Karting Challenge event at Autosport International at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham on Friday (15 Jan).
Smith, from Beverley, who has become an established star in the American Le Mans Series sportscar category, contests a 90-minute multi- driver race to help raise awareness and funds for Malaria No More UK.
Guy competes in a Racing4Charity event staged on a brand new 0.5-mile, 10-corner circuit in the Live Action Arena at the NEC. Smith began his near 25-year motorsport career in karts at the age of 12, winning four championships and four runner-up titles.
"I love getting back in to a kart and this race is for a very good cause so it'll be great fun but I'm sure ultra-competitive," confirmed Smith who drove a Bentley to a memorable Le Mans victory seven years ago.
"We're all racing drivers and once the visor comes down, it's game on and the race becomes very serious even when it's meant to be a fun event."
Smith is scheduled to be interviewed by BBC TV's Formula One commentator, Martin Brundle, on Thursday (14 Jan) -- his Bentley team-mate from 2001 -- while Guy shares his kart with 2009 Dyson Racing team-mate, Marino Franchitti, Paul di Resta, plus the drummer of Scottish rock quartet, Travis, Neil Primrose.
Guy has already shaken away the excesses of Christmas and the New Year by participating in John Haughland's Winter Rally School that trains both racing and rally drivers to drive in slippery conditions on a frozen lake and snow-covered special stages organised by the Norwegian former race and rally driver in Geilo, 150-miles North West of Oslo.
"John [Haugland] himself was my instructor in a GpN specification Subaru Impreza which was awesome," reflected Smith who is also in training for his London Marathon debut in April.
"I did it to help my rallying and to generally sharpen up my car control. It was also good to try something out of my comfort zone and I'm sure it will help my race driving too - you never stop learning."
Smith tried his hand at Historic car rallying last year, finishing seventh in class on his rallying debut in a Ford Escort Mk1 owned by his father, Peter, on the Mid Wales Historic Stages last June before netting fourth in class on the Roger Albert Clark Rally in November at the wheel of his own Mk1 Escort.
-source: guy smith pr