MDM 2008 -A Future in Car Racing? Better Get Ready Now!

MDM 2008 -A Future in Car Racing? Better Get Ready Now!

09.12.2008: Simon Abadie - Bernard Mattana Thanks to his deep knowledge of karting and car racing, built up in over thirty years spent in top motor sports competitions, Bernard MATTANA can now put his experience at the service of young drivers who wish to start a suc

Simon Abadie - Bernard Mattana

Thanks to his deep knowledge of karting and car racing, built up in over thirty years spent in top motor sports competitions, Bernard MATTANA can now put his experience at the service of young drivers who wish to start a successful career in car racing.

His many contacts in highly reputed karting and car racing stables enable him to direct a driver and his entourage along a path often full of pitfalls and unexpected incidents. He himself describes his new manager role, aimed at creating the best conditions for a driver’s success.

Why does a driver already need a manager when he is still competing in karting?

For three main reasons…

1/ There are many more elements to be dealt with than in karting; in order to be successful, you need a more professional and rigorous approach, and strong focus. These qualities cannot be acquired from one day to the other, by simply defining a budget for car racing. Indeed, I have seen excellent kart drivers fail in car racing, but also average kart drivers achieve extraordinary results with cars.

2/ Nowadays drivers make their passage to car racing when they are very young and the outcome is not always positive. Therefore, it is very important to hire a manager the last year (or last two years) in karting, so that the driver, his parents and the manager learn to speak the same language. This also allows parents to assess their child’s motivation, his determination and his competence, before starting planning with him his future career in car racing.

3/ There are many parents who cannot always accompany their children to competitions because they have to work. A manager can follow the driver from the moment he gets off the plane to when he goes on board the plane that takes him back home.

Do you think you have the right qualities to be a good manager?

Experience is not something you learn at school. In 33 years in motor sports, I have worked with the best factory and private teams and I still entertain excellent relations with them. I have met and had contacts with some of those who have competed, or still compete in Renault 2.0 and 3.5, F3, GP2 and also F1. However, I have also

known a higher number of drivers who had the talent and the means to get there, but who didn’t make it... and not just for financial reasons!

In retrospect – but this is by no means an absolute truth – I think I am well equipped to put a young talented driver on the right track, select the best team for him, work on his weaknesses, enhance his strong points and keep in him a fundamental balance between aggressiveness, self-confidence and humility...

How can a manager help a driver more than his parents, who know him very well?

Parents are essential for a young driver’s good balance but they put him, often not deliberately, under a pressure that can be counter-productive. While parents tend to look at the qualities of their son, a good manager will rather focus on correcting his weak points as a driver. In the end, this makes a great difference. Moreover, nowadays teams prefer to have an intermediary between them and the parents.

Does not this risk making relations between the different parties involved more complicated?

On the contrary! Parents create the raw diamond, the manager is the one who "cuts the stone", while the team and technical staff set the gem in a jewel... For a good final result, everyone has to stick to their role.

"MDM, a precious partner for Tech1"

"When I was a kart driver, I had to opportunity to work with Bernard Mattana for several years. He has huge experience in motor sports and he gave me a lot, by making me aware of the importance of focus, motivation and rigour in order to be successful. He helped training many drivers and has an expert eye when it comes to finding the best of them; moreover, he can rely on a very wide network of contacts, both in karting and car racing. I think he has all the qualities necessary to become a manager. I have immediately asked him to collaborate with Tech1 Racing, because a team like ours need someone like him to act as intermediary between us and the drivers".

Simon Abadie, team manager of Tech1 Racing (2007 / 2008 Formula Renault 3.5 Champion and 2007 / 2008 Mégane Trophy Champion)


- KARTcom- also photo




09.12.2008 / MaP

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