Racing driver Matt’s ‘incredible’ rookie season
AN ASPIRING racing driver from Emersons Green has achieved his goal of a podium finish in the 2018 Castle Combe Saloon Car Championship.
As previously reported in the Voice, Matt Parr, who works as a mechanic for Dick Lovett in Cribbs Causeway, started racing two-stroke go-karts when he was 18. After four years, he then moved into sprint racing, where the aim is to drive a road car around a track or circuit in the quickest time possible.
In 2017, Matt was offered the chance to do a test in a race car by Grant Motorsport, a team based in Warmley. Following this, he joined the team and was then entered into the 2018 Saloon Car Championship at Castle Combe circuit, which is split into four classes from A to D (depending on the power of the vehicle). Matt races in a specially-modified Citroen Saxo in class D, which he pays to rent and have maintained for him by the team.
After testing in February and March of this year, he was then put through to race twice in April and May, where he finished second and first in class D, and also achieved the fastest overall lap time in both races. The second half of the 2018 Castle Combe Saloon Car Championship season was a challenging one, with Matt’s team leading their class and the overall championship by just one point. They were in a strong position until round six, when Matt took a hit off the start and broke a driveshaft, which caused the team to lose their overall championship lead and finish third, with the lead in their class.
Speaking of the championship and his future ambitions, Matt said: “I finished third overall out of 35 entrants, with six class poles, six class wins and five class fastest laps! I had an incredible rookie season, and it’s all thanks to my sponsors and team Grant Motorsport for getting me into the grid to show what I could do.
“In 2019 I hope to continue racing in the Castle Combe Saloon Car Championship but in a higher class. We have a potentially very good higher class-winning car, and we are currently in discussion with the team and my sponsors to put a budget together for the season.”
Matt says his goal for next five years is to get to the Clio Cup for Renault Clios, and he would also like to have more sponsors, which he can promote on his ‘Matt Parr Racing’ Facebook page. Since it launched, he has had a lot of support from the public with over 700 people following him within just six months, and he hopes to grow this in 2019 and beyond. In addition, his long-term dream is to enter the British Touring Cars Championship, which is the biggest saloon car competition in the country.
To keep up to date with Matt’s progress, visit the Matt Parr Racing Facebook page.