How did you get started in racing? What initially attracted you to the sport?
Ford Chip Ganassi Racing WEC driver Harry Tincknell: “I started karting when I was eight years old, following a family holiday in Sardinia, Italy. Opposite the hotel was a kart track and I went there every day.”
What is your earliest racing memory?
HT: “I had always watched Formula One from about four years old with my Dad. There was no motorsport history in my family, but I distinctly remember cheering on Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard in the McLarens.”
Who was your favorite racer growing up and why?
HT: “Mika Hakkinen. He has always been my hero. I guess it was because of his hugely fast qualifying laps and taking the title back-to-back in ’98 and ’99. It was always exciting watching Mika as he was often the fastest but also had a lot of setbacks to overcome. They say you should never meet your heroes but I’ve met mine and he was really nice!”
Did you have anyone you considered a mentor in the racing world? Who was it and how have they helped you?
HT: “Yes, Allan Mcnish is my manager. He’s won Le Mans three times and has helped me since I switched from karts to cars in 2009. He has been able to pass on his racing knowledge, not only about the technicalities of driving but also how to act around the team, car setup and representing a brand. He has also helped open many doors through his contacts in the industry and I wouldn’t be where I am now without him.”
What are you most proud of in your racing career?
HT: “Winning Le Mans in 2014. It was my first time there and we had an early issue but we fought back to take an unlikely victory. Taking Ford’s first victory back in the WEC at Fuji in 2016 and finishing second at Le Mans in 2017 are right up there too.”
How would you describe your racing style?
HT: “Smooth with a touch of aggression when required!”
If you weren’t racing, what do you think you’d be doing?
HT: “Probably working in finance. I’ve always been good with numbers and the stock market interests me greatly.”
What are some challenges that are unique to your sport compared to other racing series?
HT: “Compared to other racing series, the biggest difference is you are working as a team with your fellow teammates for the good of the car. In single-seaters and other formulae, your teammate is the one common marker everyone can use, so beating them is the number one priority. In endurance racing you work together to improve each other as ultimately, the faster you both go the more chance your car has of winning. It’s not something that everyone adapts to well after years of the karting and single-seaters mindset.”
What is the best piece of racing advice you’ve been given?
HT: “Work hard, be your own harshest critic and make lots of notes.”
How do you relax when you have free time away from racing?
HT: “I like to play and watch a lot of sport. Golf and running are the two main sports that I do. I also like film, concerts, staying on a few days after races to explore, hanging out with friends and even a bit of cooking!”