Alastair's Blog

Rush The Movie, James Hunt and Me

- Thursday, February 07, 2013

The January 24th edition of Autosport ran a series of features on James Hunt, F1, McLaren, Ron Howard's movie, Rush, which is released in the UK September 2013 and a full page feature on me and 'The Race of my Life'. All of these features  gave me a chance to revisit some glorious, funny and outrageous moments during my career. Head over to Autosport to read more.

The article on James bought back many outrageous memories - because when James and I were together it often got out of hand!. It gave me a chance to share a couple of the more amusing moments with James being James! It also reminded me about the hard work required to recall and draft a recollection of memories. I'm just in the middle of producing a book about my motor racing career, which of course will include a lot more stories about James. Make sure you post a comment at the bottom of this article with your details and when we have more news I'll let you know. It will be a great read full of lots of 'can't miss' stories!

And finally when you pick up your digital or newstand edition of Autosport don't miss the full page article on page 90 'Final Drive - Race of my Life'. It's all about the Japanese GP at Fuji on October 24th 1976 where James needed to finish third to win the F1 championship. It was run in appalling conditions and James' refusal to read the race boards caused endless amounts of 'Pit Rage'!


When Anne met Alastair

- Thursday, October 04, 2012

If you are a listener of Anne Diamond’s BBC Radio Berkshire show, you may have heard her chatting recently with Alastair Caldwell, the founder of Space Station. During his conversation with the TV and radio legend, Alastair talked car racing, movie making and, of course, self storage.

It is not long since Alastair returned from completing the month-long Trans-America car rally, and Anne was keen to hear about his amazing adventure. The journey took the competitors from New York on the east coast, through some of North America’s most spectacular scenery, to the freezing north-west coast of Alaska. As is typical of Alastair, rather than relying on modern motoring technology to help him on his journey, he chose to complete the endurance challenge in style, driving a 1962 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud. Oh, and, like any good son, he also took his 94 year old mother along for the ride too! To Anne’s astonishment, Alastair explained that, in total, the pair travelled a staggering 18,000 miles. 

As Alastair reminisced about his time leading the Maclaren Formula One racing team in the 1970s, Anne asked how a boy from New Zealand, with little in the way of qualifications, could rise to such an enviable position. From Alastair’s answer it was clear that it was sheer drive, determination and a passion for the job that took him to the top of his field.

As Anne and Alastair chatted about all things motor racing, the listeners may have been wondering if this is the same guy that owns and runs Space Station, the longest established self storage company in the UK. But then it all started to make sense. Alastair explained how he had first encountered the concept of self storage in Long Beach, California. He used the facility to store his Grand Prix car. At that moment a lightbulb went on in Alastair’s head and he could see the future. Starting in 1983, with rows of painted shipping containers, Alastair became the first person in Britain to offer that kind of self storage facility. Once again, that same drive, determination and a passion for the job meant that Alastair found himself in pole position in a whole new industry.

If Alastair’s life reads like the script of a Hollywood movie, it is appropriate that he was sought out by top Hollywood director, Ron Howard, to advise on the making of his new film, Rush, about the heyday of Formula One. After chatting with Anne about this unexpected turn in his career, Alastair mentioned that his next trip would be down the red carpet, at the film’s first screening.

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