Swift Rallycross Championships

Swift Rallycross Championships

Rolling with Rodemark!

We catch up with Graham Rodemark, Proprietor of Autopoint Specialist Engineering and winner of the opening round at Lydden Hill for a chat after Round 2.

 

We have seen the Autopoint Swifts return with new livery for 2013, what inspired that

 

Before the Swifts were introduced, my Rallycross experience was always about running and supporting cars on event.  When Pat Doran told me about this new Swift class I thought it sounded brilliant fun and within budget so I just built one to get out there and experience some of the adrenaline they raved about myself.

 

Previously, the focus at events has always been my clients,  my racing was slipped in whilst running the Doran cars and I would simply jump in, tighten the belts and head for the line.  This year I have a totally new approach and with many of the swifts being turned out to a very high standard we have upped our game and are focused on running for that title and delivering for our sponsors.

Graham flying at Lydden Hill - courtesy of Matt Bristow - rubberduckdoes.com

 

Great start to the season!   The Autopoint cars looked very strong at the opening round at Lydden giving you a double win across Sport and Junior Swift Championships with Junior Driver Kevin Hansen.

 

Yeah, that was a big weight off my shoulders.  I had always had an excuse in the past, sat on the start line wondering if Pats wheel nuts were tight etc.  Kevin Hansen is a phenomenal driver and pulled it out the bag in the juniors so I had to deliver as there were no excuses this time, so yes, really pleased with the result.

 

Round 2 - Impressive performance again! - Qualified pole for the final, took the  lead into the first corner however suddenly found yourself in a roll.  Fortunately you made it off the track but how were you and the car after?

 

I was fine!....Big thanks to my Corbeau Seat and Luke Harness though that meant I never shifted during the roll. 

 

The only injury I had was a broken finger which I actually had at the start of the event after slamming it in my van door!!!

 

The car unfortunately whilst not looking too bad cosmetically landed on 3 of the 4 major points so it moved the chassis quite dramatically.

 

Have you managed to test the car since the roll?

No!  I won't have chance to test it either, I will just have to put my trust in the team I have here at Autopoint.

 

You have driven Knockhill previously, how do  you find the Scottish track?  Is it one you enjoy?

Yes very much!  When I was here before I loved it, thought I was on the pace but I was very much slower than the likes of Dave Bellerby.  I plan to put that right this time.

 

Your Junior Swift Driver, Kevin Hansen is currently doing an outstanding performance on track.   Coming from a famous rallycross family himself, does he have much input into the setup of the car etc?

Yes, as I said before, Kevin is phenomenal!  Coming from the best family in Rallycross history with father Kenneth, 14 times European Rallycross Champion and Mum Susann also holding the European Rallycross Champion Status herself, he does not come with a know-it-all attitude. 

 

He is calm and has a very mature for his age, constantly giving me clear and precise feedback not only on his car and how it is handling but also on my driving.

 

He and his father had a big input into my qualifying position at Mallory Park.

Junior Kevin Hansen - Courtesy of Trev Coulson - rallycrossphotos.co.uk

 

Who is your biggest threat out there?

I am under no illusion there are very good drivers out there who can win, last season proved that with 7 different winners across the season.  We will just take each round at it comes, obviously Mallory was a big disappointment to us however we will be heading to Knockhill to get back in the game.

 

Join us at Knockhill on 12th May 2013 to see how Graham and Kevin get on.

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