Motorsport UK

Circuit Racing


Chris Hignell

Lives: Yate, near Bristol

DOB: 1958

Occupation: Tea and coffee distributor

Currently competing in: Castle Combe Saloon Car Championship

Career highlights: Starting and finishing every race bar one in four seasons. Also in 2017, finishing 9th overall in the championship out of 45 scoring competitors, and with probably the lowest powered car in the series.


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

My Father took me to the RAC Rally overnight stops at Aust services as a young boy. The cars, the noise, the lights had a massive impact on me that has never left.


Where/how did you get started?

I lost the sight in my left eye in a life-threatening accident in 2008. To spur my recovery from constant operations, and with a modest amount of compensation, I bought a Robin Hood track day car. I live near Castle Combe circuit, and having checked with their insurers, I started doing track days there. I had always wanted to race, and this spurred me on to give it consideration. However, I had to wait to get my racing licence. My brother Stuart started racing at Combe, so I assisted him in this for a season. He then bought another car, which allowed me to buy his Fiat, which coincided with me obtaining my race licence.


What car do you use now and how much does an event cost you?

I run a Peugeot 106, having started with a FIat. Typical costs are entry fees £235, race fuel £35, and of course other costs along the way include tyres, oil and brakes. Assuming no major dramas, my total cost for a season is £3500.


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

Introduce yourself to current competitors, and tag along for a few rounds to help out. This reduces the stress of your first few races, as you are more familiar with everything. Also sponsorship can have a dramatic effect on your decision to race, and ongoing costs. I would recommend making a sponsor prospectus, and visiting businesses for support.


Why would you recommend taking up motor sport?

I recommend taking up racing, as it’s an enormous achievement to become a racing driver, but with family, friends and sponsors around you, it’s a very social sport. We have great friends in the paddock.


What do you enjoy about your particular form of motor sport?

That you don`t need a huge budget to race in a high profile, and very competitive championship, with a chance to win it outright. Also we very much enjoy the sponsor and social side of racing. The whole family comes and takes part, helping with preparation, timing, hospitality etc.