Date: Thursday 09 July 2015
A young go-kart racer from Cwmbran, Torfaen, is gearing up for his second season in the MSA Championships with a little help from our South Wales team.
Caleb McDuff, who is just seven years old and is also profoundly deaf, made his debut in the Bambino category of the prestigious competition last year, competing against other racers aged between six and eight.
Caleb secured 24th place out of 40 at the end of his first season but this year – with our support – he is hoping to better that position and move one step closer towards his dream of becoming the first deaf Formula 1 racing driver!
Caleb’s father, Ian McDuff, explains: “Caleb has always shown an interest in cars since he was very young. He first started driving a small electric toy car when he was just 18 months old and he had his first go-kart when he was four.”
Ian – who is a mechanic by trade – saw potential in Caleb’s driving and what started off as a hobby has since turned into a passion for the father and son duo, with Ian preparing and repairing Caleb’s vehicle in between races.
“I absolutely love watching Caleb race,” says Ian. “It is so rewarding to see him enjoying himself on the track – I am just so proud of him.”
Because of his impaired hearing, Caleb has to make judgements based on the vibrations of his go-kart during each race.
Ian explains: “Caleb has got cochlear implants to help him hear, which means he has small microchips fitted in his skull and wears clips on his ears. But when he races, he has to wear a crash helmet that fits very snug – so he has no choice but to take the clips off his ears which means he cannot hear anything at all.
“He has to work on vibrations to even know if the engine is running – he can’t hear the go-karts behind him, he can’t hear if there’s a problem in the engine and he can’t hear the tyres if they squeal because they are about to lose grip – instead he has to feel all of those things.”
To help Caleb in his mission to become the first deaf Formula 1 driver, we have lent our support to the youngster by providing a professional race awning that offers a dry and clear space for repairs and essential maintenance at race meetings.
“It’s excellent that a big company like Taylor Wimpey has taken an interest in Caleb’s racing,” says Ian. “It’s nice to know he is being recognised so I’d like to say a big thank you to Taylor Wimpey for supporting Caleb, we are so pleased and can’t wait for the season to begin!”
Sara Taylor, Sales and Marketing Director for Taylor Wimpey South Wales, says: “When we heard about Caleb’s dream to become the first deaf Formula 1 driver we knew straight away we wanted to help and offer our support!
“We are so proud to be sponsoring such a talented young driver and we wish him the very best of luck for the season ahead.”
We are currently building new homes at a number of developments across South Wales.