I trained as a clothing designer in Manchester and had my own successful couture wedding and special occasionwear business for several years, before re-training in interior design.
During my time in the Manchester / Cheshire area and through local car clubs I became involved in the rallying scene on the marshalling side, and loved every minute of it. There is nothing quite like the smell of hot engine oil (or men in Nomex suits and race boots … )
I have been lucky enough to own and or drive a great variety of cars from the classic E-type and Healey, the 80s legends of Opel Manta and Audi UR Quattro to a supercharged Jaguar, the stunning MX5 and the Tesla Model S and although my working life has been much more to do with “girlie” design things, I remain a petrol head at heart.
In 2004 I tried out for the Formula Woman track racing series, but despite getting through to the final 50, sadly it was not to be.
I moved to live in France in 2005, and found the French attitude to women and cars very out of tune with my own!
However, I also discovered the Rallye des Gazelles, and vowed that I would compete in it before my 50th birthday. I will achieve that aim assuming we make it to the start line in 2019!
Since 2014 I have travelled regularly to Morocco and it is a country that I absolutely adore. The people are warm and welcoming and the colours, patterns and smells of the country itself alert my senses like nowhere else. Being a keen photographer, I always return with images to treasure, and I am looking forward to capturing a new side of Morocco during the rally.
For me the Rallye des Gazelles represents a real challenge.
As my formative years were in the 80s when there was a culture for making the best of yourself, I have always held the belief that you can do anything and be anyone you want to be. There are no limits unless you set them for yourself.
I am particularly passionate about women being given the opportunity to prove themselves in traditionally male dominated arenas, and as the step mother of a focused and inspirational Paralympian who is also pushing hersef to the limits of her ability, this quest is close to my heart.
My brain does not naturally align with mathematical type functions, so learning the art of navigation with a map and compass will be a challenge in itself.
I love driving but have never driven in sand before, so that is another new skill to learn.
But, I love challenges and learning new things, and am ridiculously excited about taking part in the event.
I also like to do anything I take on to the best of my ability, I think that is my Virgo nature, so my goal is to rank quite highly in the final standings!
Lastly, I am really looking forward to sharing this life changing experience with other like minded women.
I hope that you will support us and follow our journey all the way to the beach in Essaouira!