Mark Tredwin is a confirmed petrol head with a passion for cars. He has never raced on a track in his life – until this summer. And he’s doing it all for Purple4Polio.
He describes the car as “fast on acceleration, quick around corners, incredibly nimble, but whose aerodynamics are the second cousin of a house brick!”
Welcome to the wacky world of motor sport which this summer sees rookie racer and Dorset Rotarian, Mark Tredwin, hurtling round tracks in a purple-liveried Caterham 7 car.
“I am a confirmed petrol head, but this season of racing is going to scratch an itch which I’ve had for many years,” explained 55-year-old Mark, a member of Lyme Regis Rotary Club.
Rotary will very much be at the forefront of Mark’s campaign in the seven-race Caterham Academy Series, which is aimed at enthusiasts who have never raced before, all battling it out in similar cars. It will be a true test of racing ability.
Mark’s father John was an active Rotary member at Risca Rotary Club near Newport, and his mother Joy was a former President of the Inner Wheel in the South Wales town. She died last year, and so Mark is using her legacy to fund this venture into amateur car racing.
“It’s going to be a challenge.
“I’ve been encouraged by family to do this,” explained Mark. “We thought it would be a good way to race and also promote a couple of charities.”
“As a Rotarian, polio is a cause very close to my heart and so I wanted to do something at these races which raised a bit of money but also created awareness of Purple4Polio and Rotary generally.”
“There is a perception that Rotary is full of old people who don’t do a great deal but rattle tins outside supermarkets. What I want to show this summer is that couldn’t be further from the truth.”
Competing under the brand of Team Treddie Racing, Mark will be doing some fundraising track-side at the different venues in aid of Purple4Polio, but also the Dorset-based hospice, Julia’s House.
This is a high-profile year for Caterham since 2017 celebrates the 60th anniversary of the first Caterham, originally designed and produced by Lotus Cars. There will be 28 cars on two grids for each race.
The season began with a couple of time trial events in Liverpool and Tamworth, before the track season began at Brands Hatch on June 4th.
The series has drawn rookies from a wide range of age and professions, and Mark admitted he was realistic to know he would not be among the front runners.
“It is going to be a challenge,” he said. “I am not going to set the world alight because there are some youngsters on the grid who have better reactions than me. But I am going to have some fun and promote Purple4Polio at the same time.”
There will be television coverage of the Caterham Academy Race Series on Lotus TV and Motors TV.
Main races this summer include:
- Brands Hatch – 4th June
- Donighton – 8th – 9th July
- Snetterton – 5th August
- Rockingham – 16th – 17th September 16th-17th
- Silverstone International – 14th – 15th October
Published: Wednesday 17th May 2017