Motor Sports Association

Sprint

 

Matt Oliver 

Lives: Maidstone, Kent

DOB: 1985

Occupation: Automotive engineer

Currently competing in: 2007 MSA British Sprint

Career highlights: 2007 MSA British Sprint

What got you interested in motor sport in the first place?

My dad used to compete so I was brought up around cars and the performance side of it.

Where/how did you get started?

I started when I was 11 years old. We bought a cheap kart and did club level events at Lyd circuit just down the road. It was just a bit of fun…

What was your first car and how much did it cost you?

When I was 17 we shelled out £3000 on a Sierra Cosworth which we enterd in sprints. It wasn’t a purpose built race car so was actually quite tricky to drive, but that taught me car control and discipline. The only other cost on top of the car was entry fees and a bit of petrol.

What tips would you pass onto someone who wants to start competing?

Use everything you’ve got to be the best you can. Also, use practice as practice. A lot of people try to be fastest in practice which never works. You cannot underestimate anyone. If you do you’ll set yourself up to be a fool – other people can always improve.

Are you a member of a motor club and how long for?

Sevenoaks MC since 2002. It’s good for socialising and you find out about events that are on and how to get involved. People have always got good advice. You’re meeting up with like-minded people who share a common interest.

Why would you recommend taking up motor sport?

If you enjoy cars then you can challenge yourself properly. The social side is very friendly. Sprinting is one of the cheapest forms of motor sport – you’re racing against the clock so any accident damage is really down to you alone. It also teaches you how to lose – no-one likes losing but you learn to dig deeper. I suppose it mirrors life in many ways.