Mud, Marshals and Mission Motorsport
Mission Motorsport returned to Anglesey Circuit for it’s fourth edition of the Race of Remembrance, and in the traditional style of the race, there was always something that cropped up that made it a little bit more challenging!
A sense of achievement as we crossed the line after 231 miles.
Last year you may have remembered the six marshals and their two support crew who took on a 231 mile bike ride over three days to raise money for Mission Motorsport? If not thankfully, I wrote a blog on it.
In 2015, the Race had again a challenge with less pedaling but more precipitation. With a large amount of the event still to go, it had to be halted as the amount of rain meant the driving conditions were un-driveable. This mixed with the high wind speeds made marshalling a miserable task. I remember trying to hold two yellow flags, white flag and a safety car board; all this was going on whilst a car was being recovered from a tyre wall. After many hours of safety cars and rain, the race was red flagged.
So what was the challenge this year?
Mud, and lots of it. The heavy rainfall over night had saturated the ground at the side of the circuit. Whilst this was an issue for the marshals to watch where they were putting their feet so as to not sink into the quagmire, it was the cars that had the issues.
Up to the axels: the NSX gave us a taste of what was to come.
The first victim, for want of a better word, to the mud was a Honda NSX which was part of the Supercar Saturday. A small moment coming out of the Hairpin led to a big problem, and a rather embarrassing one. After pulling the car free though, it did show the extent of the challenge that lay ahead in the race.
Marshalling by Numbers!
The calm before the storm: little did we know what the weather had planned for us.
As I mentioned the mud was bad, the cars sunk, everything got dirty and you would have thought that it would mean a marshalling misery. Not a chance! With the number of orange bodies around the circuit and the determination of them, meant that every car was recovered from the mud and most of them were able to continue the race.
It may seem a scary thought going out to a car in darkness with only a set of headlights coming at you to identify what a car is doing, and the trust in the drivers seeing the yellow lights to slow down, yet once a car is moved the feeling of achievement is through the roof.
The event is a big one for the marshals in terms of it being an endurance race and being able to help a charity, centred around a sport that we love. For the people at Mission Motorsport, this is their Le Mans. A year long project is all based around getting the beneficiaries to finish the race. The ultimate goal. Whether that means pushing a car over the line, or getting one custom built, everyone groups together.
I mean the video below shows the length they went to, to get people on the track racing.
The aim is still to win and be competitive, but the victory may come against something else. We all think that winning means beating another person, another team. Lewis Hamilton is a winner, a champion. However, every person who has come through the ranks of the charity to race, to engineer or to work within Motorsports mean they have won. Won against themselves and their personal battles.
The weekend is also about the past as well as the future. You’ll be hard pressed to find any race track that falls silent mid-way through a race to remember those that have fallen. A pitlane full of drivers, mechanics, marshals, officials, families, soldiers, photographers and more, to show their respects all with a Safety Car that had been liveried up specifically for the event.
#poppycar @MM_RoR what a car… What an organisation @Missionmotorspt pic.twitter.com/pnrbU1weCv — Drew Faulkner (@faulknerdrew) November 10, 2017
I’m sure after all that and the inspirational people who just can’t stop competing, it will make you want to see first hand what the race is all about. So, I’ll see you at the fifth edition of the Race of Remembrance, wherever that may be.
Written By – Robert Lee (@RobLee559 – Twitter/Instagram)
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