ITH – Will’s Picks – The Interview {{favouriteCount}} Quantity of Likes

13 Dec 2017

If you’re reading this you’re obviously a fan of BOTB, so you must know about the man who started it all, right? No? Well in that case you’ve come to the right place. The founder of BOTB, Will Hindmarch has chosen the cars that are In the Headlights this week and he’s chosen very well indeed. But don’t let us tell you that, here are some words on why he chose those cars by the man himself…

AC Schnitzer ASC2

The BMW M2 is a great little package, a good looking sports car with decent practicality and that M-badge pedigree. But I like my sports cars to have that little edge, something a bit different so this is why I chose this AC Schnitzer ASC2. Schnitzer are one of the oldest BMW tuners around and that shows as this comes with more power and a purposeful bodykit that doesn’t look aftermarket at all. M4 power in a smaller package is always going to be a winner for me.

Litchfield RS3 Stage 2

I have a real thing for the RS3 at the moment. We’ve given quite a few away and recently a winner came to the office in his to show us and I really fell for it. The combination of subtle looks and monster all weather power means it’s the perfect car for London. But as I’ve said I like a more personalised touch, so this has got Litchfield’s Stage 2 upgrade which takes the power up to a GT3-matching 500bhp! I can only imagine how hilarious that is to drive…

Range Rover P400e Autobiography

Even though I’ve just said the tuned RS3 is the perfect London car, it’s a little too small for family duties – that’s where this Range Rover comes in. There’s nothing like a Range Rover for wafting around in luxury and this one can do it better than any before as you can cruise around on electric power, silently. No worries about range anxiety though as there’s a petrol engine too should you venture out of the city.

Mercedes-AMG GT-C Coupe + VIP Monaco GP trip for two

There’s something very old school about the AMG GT, the long bonnet, the angry exhaust note and the aggressive looks give it a real muscle car feel. But then you sit in and realise that you’re sitting almost on the rear axle with that long bonnet stretching out and you feel like you’re in a proper supercar. This GT-C sits just below the track-focused GT-R so it’s got more power, wider looks but still usable. You won’t need to drive it to the south of France though as the other part of this prize is a VIP trip for two to the Monaco Grand Prix in May 2018. We’ll fly you out there and you’ll spend the weekend in luxury, watching the spectacle of all spectacles from Auto Vivendi’s luxury yacht – it really is an incredible prize. Then fly home to the stunning AMG on your driveway.

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So those are the prizes, but we need to delve deeper. So we strapped Will to a chair and played loud Xmas music until he talked…

It was a passion for cars and a relentless lusting for the next one which inevitably led Will Hindmarch to set up BOTB in 1999.

“It was my desire to be around, and ultimately own, a lovely car (and not being able to afford one!) that made me start BOTB. The idea was simple - to give people a great chance to win the car of their dreams for a small amount of money.”

But his love of all things four-wheeled was developed much earlier, thanks in no small part fo his father.

“My father was/is a major petrolhead and cars were always before anything else in our family,” he recalls. “When my parents were newly married they were building a little house together but ran out of money to finish so there was a ladder to get to the bedroom instead of a staircase.  My mother of course understood this and realised they had to save up but then one day he came back in a new E Type….

“I’m not sure how he got away with that but he is playing the same game now in his seventies.”

Will’s first motoring memories involve trips to Brands Hatch.

“My father would take me to a race and I was just awe-struck at seeing these cars. The noise was sensational.”

There was plenty to look at on the drive, too.

“He had lots of cars but always talks of the Lotus Elite with the Coventry Climax engine as the most exciting. The E Type was the best for me.”

As for Will, he matches his father’s passion for speed but also adds in a splash of something sensible.

“I drive a Caterham Supersport R - with stage 2 engine upgrade - and a Fiat 500 (I live in London so it’s just very easy to park, etc). The most exciting car I ever had was the Lotus Elise when it first came out as it was so different to anything else on the road at the time. I also loved the RS4 Avant - it was so incredibly fast but also very understated. As for the worst, that’s easy - the BMW X5. Kids came so say no more. Add to the fact that it sounded like a tractor, had a boring interior and was just so big.”

Will documented the building of his Caterham through the BOTB blog and has given the Bobcat plenty of outings since. Any other trips he can remember?

“I drove down to the South of France in a Frog Eyed Sprite which was great fun until the brakes failed. Everyone thought I was waving at them for fun but actually I was about to run them over! I also did some ice driving in Sweden but getting the Caterham on an open road is hard to beat.”

So if he wasn’t running BOTB, what would he be doing?

“I’d love to be in Formula One in some capacity…probably now as a team manager (I think the driving days are past me!!).  I love the tech in F1 and have always been fascinated by it. I tried to get an unpaid job with Williams F1 when I was 18 but sadly did not get it!”

Did he ever think BOTB would become as successful as it has?

“I am very proud to say that this dream of owning an incredible car has been realised for hundreds of people who are now driving vehicles that they merely dreamt of when they were little boys or girls!

“It has been hugely rewarding both starting and running BOTB and although hard work at times, we are fortunate to have the dedicated support of a great team at our head office in South West London and a tireless team of staff at our airports sites. I must thank them for all their hard work and my wife for being incredibly tolerant for all the late nights moving cars into and out of airports!

“So, as we celebrate our 400th winner this week, thanks to everyone who plays with BOTB and for your support in 2017 - many congratulations to all the winners, and for those who missed out, I hope next year you get the car of your dreams!”

So lastly, if BOTB were to pull up to Will’s house with the car of his dreams, what would that car be?

“It would have to be a Singer 911. Nothing else comes close.”

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