Most 16-year-olds are sitting their GCSEs this time of year, one teenager though will be preparing to set the French countryside ablaze – Matt McMurry.
Son of Dyson Racing stalwart Chris McMurry, Matt will be racing the #41 Greaves Motorsport Zytek-Nissan alongside Chris Dyson and Tom Kimber-Smith when the endurance classic gets underway on Saturday afternoon.
McMurry already has a wealth of experience since starting his racing only two years ago with spells in Formula Skip Barber and USF2000, last year saw him compete in IMSA Prototype Lites and that quickly saw him get his eyes on the prize – a drive at Le Mans.
“I’ve been working toward this specific goal for almost four years now,” said McMurry, who finished fourth in both of the European Le Mans Series rounds this year with Greaves. “That was over 60 races ago, 20,000 miles of seat time, and 175,000 frequent flyer miles ago. I can’t believe it’s almost here and within reach. I feel well prepared by all the amazing mentors I’ve had every step of the way, and am ready to help Dyson and Greaves succeed in the most important sports car race in the world.”
The air miles have already made him a veteran of the skies, competing at the Le Mans test day to get his mandatory ten laps he had to fly back to Kansas to compete in the Lites race before immediately flying back again shows his dedication.
At this point, like me, you may be baffled by the sheer age of the man – at 16-years-old he wasn’t even born when the legend of La Sarthe – Tom Kristensen – took his first victory. That just makes the whole thing completely staggering.
Although – as mentioned above – McMurry has already proved he is no slouch in an LMP2 car, two fourth places at Silverstone and Imola in a class that routinely sees double figure entry lists is an absolute marvel.
“Matt has been nothing short of outstanding in his first two major international races,” noted Dyson. “He has driven like a veteran and has validated our decision to take him on as a Junior Development Program driver. It is very exciting to be taking him to Le Mans, but he is ready for the challenge. It’s wonderful for Dyson Racing to play a role in helping Matt to record such a historic milestone.”
McMurry will be beating the milestone set 55 years ago in 1959, that was Ricardo Rodriguez who ended up finishing unclassified in 43rd place – now though McMurry will be hoping his Zytek can cope with the strains better than Rodriguez’s O.S.C.A.
Www.TheCheckeredFlag.co.uk will be providing flag-to-flag coverage of the 2014 Le Mans 24 Hours both on the site – with hourly round ups – as well as on Twitter @thecheckerflag.