No Fear

Steven Marsh wants to be a motor racing driver- can he achieve his goal? Lets find out together...

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6. Formula Three

The fallout from the final day of the karting championship had been short-lived but intense. Peter Sullivan had won the title by winning the race and Steven had been very happy for him- just gutted to have not won it himself. Philip Dicenzo had spoken to the stewards about getting Steven disqualified but Steven had explained himself and there would be no action taken- much to Philip's fury.

Michael Stone had been more reasonable- he'd gone straight to Peter at the end and shook his hand- Peter himself had scarcely believed that he'd won- he'd been on the verge of happy, emotional tears, and Steven had been stabbed with jealousy. He'd been so close!

There'd been the temptation to have words of his own with the backmarker who'd scuppered his own chances, but Steven had realised it would accomplish nothing. The lad responsible had given him a look of utter sorrow, but had stopped short of actually coming up to him and apologising. Steven took that for what it was and got on with the rest of his life.

As it turned out, his life was about to get more interesting...

****

"We've had a phone call."

Steven was seated in the 'office' of Rodger Harris, his team boss (though it was more of a small box room attached to the garages where the team tinkered with the karts). There was barely space to swing a cat, yet somehow a small mahogany desk and two small chairs had been squeezed in- along with photos on the wall of Rodger's past team members and races. Rodger was seated behind his desk, eying up the cigar tin that sat there, but not yet lighting up.

"Basically..." Rodger clasped his hands together and leaned forward. "The big guys at Formula 3 are recruiting. They've had their scouts around these parts and they've phoned to ask about you. They were asking me if I felt you were ready to take such a big step forward."

Steven leaned forward himself, unable to keep the excitement- and anxiety- from his face. "What did you say boss?"

Rodger leaned back. "I told 'em the truth- you're quick, committed and determined. A bit rough around the edges sometimes but not afraid to have a go. They liked the sound of that."

"Ah... thank you." Said Steven.

"Don't thank me just yet. If you sign up you'll have to spend a lot more time on the road. You'll have twenty races, across ten weekends. You'll have to quickly learn new tracks, real race tracks like the Nurburgring, Magny-Cours and Hockenheim. You'll be living with your team mates- you prepared to do that son?"

Jeez, twenty races? Tracks like Hockenheim? Damn, that sounds both fun and terrifying at once. "It's what I've always wanted to do."

Rodger leaned forward again. "I've always believed that about you, but speak to your mum and dad first. You'll be getting a taste of the glamour- and the hardships- that go with being on the road all the time."

Steven sat there, silent for a moment. He'd stayed away for a week or two here and there on school trips and the like- but this was going to be different. Very different. Even so, it was an amazing chance. Someone had watched him and recommended him- he couldn't turn this down.

"What team would I be joining?" Steven asked.

"They're called Team Rosberg, set up by former F1champion Keke Rosberg. His son is set to join them and he's tipped for big things. If you can match him you'll be set for big things too."

Wow, the chance to work with Keke Rosberg! The 1982 F1 champion, former team mate of Nigel Mansell and Alain Prost- if there had been any doubts before there were none now- he had to do it!

"Like I said Steve, talk to your mum and dad. Think it over. This offer isn't going anywhere. You've got time. Other offers for other series might come in and you don't want to sign up to something quickly and rule something else out."

"Yeah yeah, sure." But Steven wasn't really listening. He was already imagining what it would be like to race across circuits like the Nurburgring.

"I mean it Steven." Rodger's voice had a little bit of an edge to it. "You can't rush this. I want you to succeed and I believe you can, but the best racers are thinkers too. Be a thinker now and go home and call me when you've talked to your parents. I'll be right here."

Steven was a little deflated- he was all set to say yes but he suspected Rodger wouldn't let him.

"Ok fine, I'll have a word with them."

"That's a good lad. In the mean time, if anything else comes up, I'll give you a bell."

****

Steven walked home- the cool November air felt good and soothing- plus he hadn't passed his driving test yet. He was looking forward to telling his mum and dad the good news! Part of him knew his mum would be a little upset that her baby boy was going off for any length of time, but she'd also be happy that he had such a great chance to fulfill his dream. Such an opportunity couldn't be turned down!

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