"This is racing as a rehabilitation tool"

Motorsport fan and journalist for Autosport & Motorsport News, Jack Benyon, gives us his view on the team, on sharing their story, and the power of racing.

As a journalist, there’s always pressure to remain professional and unbiased, and to stay true to merely reporting the news, and not your opinion on it. 

Blogs like this give me the rare chance to share my thoughts, and those are of absolute admiration for Andy, Tony, Jimmy and Warren who have suffered through events the likes of which mere mortals will never really understand.

The lads would have you believe otherwise; I interviewed the four of them for a feature in Autosport in February, and each one appeared as normal as any other person I speak to on the phone. The one common factor of the people I talk to, working for a motorsport specialist publication, is that they love racing.

But this is something different. This is a bunch of men using racing as a rehabilitation tool. Despite their heroic bravery in defending our country and our freedom, they in turn are normal human beings with families, bills and real-world problems.

And the chance to rehabilitate through racing has been a big thing for them, as they will all attest to.

The fact that Team BRIT is opening its doors to all members of society with a disability of any kind, means the joy that motorsport can bring will be felt by others.

We all get lost in the seriousness of top-level motorsport. When Lewis Hamilton doesn’t win on a Sunday, it’s the end of the world for his fans.

But it’s a profession, in the same way that the lads in Team BRIT were doing their job when they were attacked by gunfire or stumbled across a minefield. And their lives really did change on a Sunday.

What can be shared is the pure joy of motorsport that is sometimes lost when you reach the upper echelons. When Lewis Hamilton first stepped into a kart, he experienced the pure joy or driving, and trying to do it better than everybody else. The feeling of standing atop the podium knowing you’re the best, or packing your kart into the trailer knowing that you gave your all out there and that you can be proud.

Through that same pure joy, I hope that many more people, servicemen and women or otherwise, use that exhilaration to help come to terms with their injuries, and find something that makes them whole again. 

I look forward to charting the progress of the new and existing members of Team BRIT through our publication, and look forward to hearing more of the views and opinions of fellow Team BRIT bloggers and readers.

Jack Benyon

Twitter: @jackbenyon
Instagram: @jackbenyon
Email: jack.benyon@motorsport.com
www.autosport .com

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