An interview with Ginetta GT5 driver John Bennett
Interviewed by Tom Evans, Edited by Harshi Vashee
First of all, who are you and in what series do you race?
John Bennett, 18 years old and I race in the Ginetta GT5 Challenge.
When did you start to take an interest in Motorsport?
I watched F1 with my Dad from as young as I could remember, he started racing Caterhams when I was about 4 and I just always loved everything to do with it, got in a rental kart from as young as I could and that was it.
Who were your biggest idols growing up?
Motorsport idols would be Senna, Button, and probably my Dad.
Why did you choose your driver number?
My race number is 27, my Dad used to race with it! He currently races in the Castle Combe GT Championship, and has just been crowned champion for the second year running.
How did you start your Motorsport career?
Started corporate karting very young, but only for fun really, never anything serious like other drivers who kart internationally, I was always quick in the rental karts, lap records at Thruxton Kart track and Wessex Raceway, we started doing some Junior Rotax when I was 16, again just for fun. My Dad always thought I had a lot of potential, so we tried out a car for the first time in January 2020 with the Ginetta GT5. I loved it and learnt the car very quickly.
I then had my first season in 2020, ended the year with 3 podiums from the last 4 races, and set a lap record at Silverstone. This year we entered GT5 again, currently have 4 wins and 9 podiums, 2 poles, 4 fastest laps.
How much of a confidence boost was it after you won your first race in Ginetta GT5?
It was a great confidence boost getting my first win – it was the first race of the season which was good to get the year underway, but inconsistent finishes is what has cost me in the championship.
You’re currently sitting 3rd in the standings, how far do you reckon you can go with 1 round remaining?
For example, at Donington earlier in the year, I went from 8th to 1st in Race 1, 11th to 2nd in race 2, but then got into contact in race 3 and only finished P12. Whereas Josh Steed has been able to finish 6th at worst! I’ll definitely be able to fight for second in the championship, but the gap to Steed is just too big to seriously contend at this point – but you never know.
And finally, what are your plans for the future?
I have very big plans for next year which can’t quite be revealed just yet, if you ask me again in a week or two I might be able to reveal them!