Friday, 21 April 2017

Thinking of you Billy23.

How many of us are guilty of watching motorsport with a little hope of seeing a bump or spin? I know it's partly what got me hooked... the drama, the thrill, the adrenaline! Never did I expect or want to see something so horrific as what I saw on Sunday 16th April 2017! Billy Monger is 17 years old and so so talented behind the wheel. I have seen him on track for a few years and I am absolutely shocked by what I saw on the track and the news that followed this week! Please share, donate and send him love (Link at the end of post)!

As you may have seen from my surprise post and my life update posts that I wrote previously, you will know that I started to take an interest in motor sport a few years ago. We had been to see the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) a few times and always watched the coverage on ITV4 but once I had seen the action live, I was bitten by the bug! In September 2015, I introduced Serena (one of my closest friends, the girliest of girls, given the title of princess by us uni friends for a reason and an absolute hoot) to the BTCC as Dan and I were visiting her home track, Silverstone. We thought she'd like a day out. Even though we decided to sit in the wind tunnel AKA the stand on Luffield on what was actually a glorious day,  Serena totally understood why I loved the sport so much. It wasn't long before we were planning our next touring car adventures.  We even did a girls only 'Girls on Tour' trip to Brands Hatch for the final round last year! Incredible! I have been to a fair few weekends and race days at this point and I have more planned! It's extra special that I can chat to a really close friend about the racing and drivers too. Okay, there's quite a lot of talk about drivers I admit! *wink*

Racing has got so obsessive for me that I don't class the year as started until the touring car season has begun. Yes I am aware of how sad that makes me but living with a diary that is filled with hospital appointments and doctors check ups it's pretty awesome to actually have things to look forward to! I count down for the media day which is usually held at my home track, Donington Park. It's where you get the first fix of the sights, smells and feels of the amazing cars on the track. And yes, I do mean feels... If you have ever stood track side of 30 odd cars all belting round a track close together then you will know how you feel it in your feet, your chest and your throat vibrate. Its AMAZING! As you might know, my brain condition prevents me from the thrills of a rollercoaster ride and the like so for me this is as close as it gets... well, this and fast planes - another love!

As it happens Donington Park is round two of the championship and it is the first round that we tend to go and see track side. (One year I will get to Brands Hatch Indy). There's a small group of us that go. (It started as a lads day out but I gatecrashed and then this year we took Serena too so it was the guys plus two). We were treated with some spectacular racing, some brave driving and some dramatic weather however there was some very unwanted drama on the day.

During the formula 4 (support race), there was the worst racing incident that I have ever witnessed. The racing was fast and close and 17 year old Billy Monger in the number 23 car was working his way up through the pack of cars after he had spun earlier in the race. It was during an overtaking manoeuvre when he shunted into the back of what looked like a stationary Pasma in car 21. It was a fast and hard impact. The race was being shown as always on the big screen opposite us on Hollywood although the incident happened to our left up towards the old hairpin. We could obviously see the seriousness of the impact and the race was immediately red flagged. Within seconds there were marshals running to the aid of both drivers. The bravery, quick response, support and team work that these volunteers offer to provide the best support and safety for the drivers and spectators is incredible! The medics were also on scene within a couple of minutes too. As a spectator, we enjoy the thrill of seeing the odd punt off into the gravel or spin here and there - it adds to the drama but I think I can safely say that no-one ever wants to see an injury! It brings the reality home that motorsport is dangerous! These are real people driving real cars and occasionally they do break! It's gut wrenching!

So, it was clear that one, if not both of the drivers were seriously injured. Both were taken to hospital and Pasma was later reported to be okay. Billy was airlifted to Queens Medical Centre and it is now known that he has had to have both lower legs amputated. I know from my experiences at QMC (albeit a different department) that Billy will be well cared for. It is a specialist trauma centre and the staff in major trauma are great. However, he has got such a long road ahead of him and his team have set up crowd funding through just giving. Please, please go and read the page, donate if you can but at the very least please leave a message of love and support to Billy and his family. I have found that the motorsport community is absolutely amazing, but lets expand it! Please share with the hashtag #billywhizz use the hastag to send love, thoughts, wishes and prayers his way.

Please go here for the justgiving page.

Billy, if by any small chance you get to read this: You have a whole world of supporters out here rooting for you and wanting nothing but the absolute best for you. You have always had a very strong head on your young shoulders and whilst times may be very confusing and frustrating, lean on those you need for support. Keep your dreams, aims and goals because you will achieve them! You will be the champion in all that you do!

Take care and please spread positivity and love wherever you are.


  1. Thank you so much for this beautiful post. I am Billy's cousin and I will ensure he reads it when the time is right. The unwavering support for him and our whole family is amazing & totally overwhelming. Thank you from the bottom of my heart x

    1. Lucy, Firstly thank you for stopping by and reading this and for the lovely comment! I genuinely haven't stopped thinking about Billy and your family. I know first hand that when something so shocking happens it rocks everyone. I have learnt how amazing the motorsport 'family' is and how they rally together (great pun there) to support one of their own. It sounds like Billy has got an incredible support network close to him and like I said in the post, he really does seem to have an incredible determined attitude to his goals. He's going to go far! We will be supporting him every bit of the way! Thank you so much for making sure Billy gets to see this one day. He's already an inspiration from what has been said by his team boss! I hope that things continue to show progress and he is back home and in comfort soon. Love, prayers, best vibes and every other good thing imaginable being sent! Hannah xx