Racing debut for Ben at Loton Park

A Shropshire teenager who is too young for a licence to drive on the public roads will take to the hills at speed this weekend when he competes at the county’s premier motor sport venue at Loton Park Speed Hill Climb.

Ben Cross, aged 16, who is from Claverley and currently studying for his GCSEs at Bridgnorth Endowed School, will be following in his father’s footsteps by racing against the clock up the narrow and demanding tarmac course through the deer park of Sir Michael Leighton’s stately home at Alberbury. near Shrewsbury.

Ben takes up the story: “I have been at my father’s side in racing carrying tools and tyres as ‘pit crew’ since being very young and have developed a shared passion for motorsport in general, but speed hill climbing in particular.

“Dad and I have worked together over the winter months to prepare the car, which is a Toyota Yaris with a 1-litre engine and following lots of practice on private roads and circuits I will make my debut in the Hagley Car Club member’s championship on Sunday.”

“Ben’s father, motor dealer Tim Cross, is an instructor at the Loton Park Driving Schools and added: “I am so proud of the effort and dedication that Ben has put into helping with the preparation of the car and also his mature attitude towards responsible motor racing.

“After years of bringing him to spectate and assist at events it will be absolutely fantastic to actually see him in action competing against fellow members of the club and I have every confidence that he will thoroughly enjoy himself in this growing sport.”

Tim himself will be competing on Monday sharing an OMS sports racing car with veteran driver Charles Williams, also of Claverley, together with Charles’s son James, an engineer with the F1 Mercedes team, who will be driving his own RPM single-seater racing car.

The separate Sunday and Monday one-day events will see several brand new machines in action together with some first time competitors in a variety of classic, sports, saloon and racing cars and motorcycles, alongside reigning British Champion Scott Moran of Ludlow in his Gould GR61X racing car.

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Pete White Pete White

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