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Petrolhead invited to drive at Silverstone

ben warren in his wheelchair next to a sports car
ben warren in his wheelchair next to a sports car Image credit: oxfordmail.co.uk

We are not sure if Ben Warren’s preferred mode of transport is available under Motability, but if it is he should watch out for those speeding trips.

The 32-year-old from Middleton Stoney, near Bicester, Oxford, was born with Lumbosacral Agenesis which left him paralysed from the waist down and no sacrum.

Despite his physical setback Ben has been a keen online ‘slim racer’ for the past eleven years where his driving skills haven’t gone unnoticed by a racing team of disabled drivers.

Mr Warren was approached by Team BRIT to take part in a Racing Academy track sessions at Silverstone and drive their VW Academy Polo around the world-famous circuit on Saturday.

Speaking to Oxford Mail Ben said: “I’m still slightly in disbelief over the opportunity that has been created for me. I’ve been a keen sportsman for years, playing wheelchair basketball since I was 14 and playing with the Great Britain Under 22s training squad, and I’ve always been a fan of many sports including motorsport.

“I’ve watched Formula 1 for years, my Dad has always been a fan, but I’ve never thought that motor racing, outside of the online world, would be something I could take part in."

He added: "It’ll be the chance of a lifetime."

Ben’s driving skills can be traced back to his days behind a games controller in 2009, a few years later he upgraded to a full racing rig with a steering wheel.

Ben met the principal and founder of Team BRIT, Dave Player, at Silverstone last year who suggested Warren coming out on the track.

Accepting the invitation within a couple of months Ben was being fitted for a custom-made seat so he could try out the team’s state-of-the-art racing simulator.

The seat is compatible with one of Team BRIT’s racing cars, allowing Ben to drive round a circuit for the very first time.

Because of his shape Warren has never been able to sit in any standard car seats until now.

Mr Player said: “We’re really looking forward to giving Ben the opportunity of driving at Silverstone. This is one of Britain’s most iconic race circuits, so for a major motorsports fan like Ben, it really will be something special.

“This is something he never thought would be possible because of his disability, but we’re all about achieving the impossible. Hopefully this will be one of many visits to the track for Ben.”

Ben Warren has starred in CBBC’s ‘Desperados’ and supports a local wheelchair basketball team.