This month we chat to Gail Swart
Tell us a little about yourself?
I was born in Edinburgh, Scotland and immigrated to South Africa at the age of 9 years old. My first exposure to motorsport was in 1982 at Aldo Scribante race circuit in Port Elizabeth, where my dad took me to watch Sarel van der Merwe in action driving the Audi Quattro.
We later moved to Cape Town and regularly visited Killarney Race track, my dad also took me to Goodwood show grounds to watch stockcar racing, and I guess that’s where the bug bit me!
What’s your latest racing accomplishment thus far?
We have developed a new chassis with a suspension derived from American Late Model dirt oval race cars.
What are you driving right now?
We race a flexi in the American Saloons V8 class, the car has a modified Toyota engine and a new generation chassis.
What has been your favorite car to drive on and of the track?
I drive Toyota on and off the track! My favourite road car to drive is a Toyota Fortuner. I am inspired by American high performanced muscle cars, and would love to one day own a 350 chev camaro.
I did enjoy racing Formula K / karting, although my passion for racing is V8’s and I really enjoy the power of the Toyota V8 engine we are currently racing.
What advice do you have for aspiring drivers?
Never give up, stay focused. Get loads of track time, and don’t forget the stop watch never lies!
What is the highlight of your racing career?
To have been given the opportunity to race amongst top South African race car drivers at Tygerberg Raceway in Cape Town in the American Saloons V8 class.
In your spare time what would we find you doing?
I guess you’ll find me at the gym, I train at Virgin Active. I also enjoy visiting the different race tracks throughout South Africa as a spectator.
Who or what has been your inspiration & how has this guided you throughout your career?
Many racers from different forms of motorsport have inspired me throughout the years, such as Dale Earnhardt – NASCAR and Ayrton Senna – Formula 1.
Although I have been inspired mostly by the legendary Cape Hell Drivers that raced V8’s during the 80’s and 90’s at the Goodwood Dirt Oval in Cape Town.