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Motorsport fan enjoys a look behind the scenes

An online competition brought a young Southland motorsport fan a wonderful opportunity to get a look behind the scenes at the recent motor race meeting at Teretonga Park in Invercargill.

Evolution Motorsport ran the competition on their social pages, inviting people to follow them and say why they would like to spend a day with the team at the event. All entries went into a lucky draw and it was Toby Courtney, a 15-year-old Central Southland College student, whose name was selected. He entered the draw with the comment “I would love to see how you guys’ set up for race day! I also want to learn as I want to race in the future. Would be awesome.”

Toby spent a day with Evolution Motorsport, their driver Jordan Michels, and the crew on the day of Rick Michels and William Reith (car owner Peter Williams and Simon Bradley were absent) as they prepared and raced their Team Williams Racing Marc Mustang in the local Noel McIntyre Drainage Club Saloon races.

Toby got to do some maintenance on the car, shadowing William to learn the ropes, taking wheels off after runs and working to trim the mesh under wheel arches after wear and tear. Toby also spent some time looking at data from the car with Jordan.

Toby, a motorsport fan who is a big Supercar, Shane Van Gisbergen and Holden fan, has just started out racing karts in the Briggs Lo206 class but wants to progress into cars in time.

“It was real good, and fun to do,” said Toby. “It was a good day and overall, I really enjoyed it.”

Michels said it was “nice to have Toby as part of the team”. “He was polite and courteous. It was good that he was cautious with the things he had to do but everything he was asked to do he would get stuck into before we finished asking. While I love motor racing, we are a family team and a big part of my enjoyment is to go racing with my dad, Rick. Toby slotted in really well and was a pleasure to have around.”

While Evolution Motorsport ran the competition to give someone the opportunity to become involved in motorsport it has had an extra benefit for Toby. “I have offered to come out to one of his kart events to give him a hand,” says Jordan, a former successful kartsport competitor and the 2019 National Formula Ford Champion.

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