Anderson school students on motorcycles with British Superbike team

Students at our Anderson School were given a career boost recently, following a visit from a leading British Superbike Championship team. In this blog, David Howard, the school faculty leader who organised the visit, writes about what happened. David was a motorcycle racer in the 1980s and is still involved as a technical official at British and World Championship level racing.   

What a fantastic couple of days for Anderson School students. On Thursday 13 June the OMG Suzuki racing team and a young racing driver called Nathan visited us with their racing motorcycles to run a mechanics masterclass.

Nathan, who is autistic, wanted to come and meet our students and talk about how he sees his autism as a superpower. He revealed that although he had a very difficult time in school, he went on to be a very talented and successful sportsman. The students in school listened to Nathan in complete silence and concentration when he spoke to them in assembly and showed them his bike. I have never seen them more engaged. This was particularly amazing given that many of our students can find it difficult to interact with new people.

As well as Nathan, the visitors included Alan Gardner, the owner of leading British superbike racing team OMG Racing, and his chief mechanic Darren. They brought one of the team's Suzuki racing motorcycles to the school and let our students take turns to sit on the bike – and make appropriate engine noises.

Anderson school student on a motorcycle with British Superbike team member

Darren then spent a couple of hours working with our students, explaining his job and answering questions about the £100,000 motorcycle.

If this wasn’t enough, Alan and Darren also donated a brand-new tool kit to the school for our student to use and kick off their engineering education.

And then, on the following day, a group of our students visited Brands Hatch race track in Kent. We arrived in time to see the British superbikes practising on the track. To help cope with potential sensory overload, the organisers let our students watch from a private viewing box overlooking the start and finish line.

We also visited the team garages and were shown around all the computer systems and the equipment that the mechanics use to build the bikes. The team were working on the bikes at the same time - and answering our students' questions too.

This link will be something that we hope to build on, so our students can understand more about different jobs and industries. The possibilities are endless.

Thank you so much to Brands Hatch, MSVR Racing, Nathan and David Drury and the OMG Racing team, Alan Gardner and Darren for your amazing support.

Anderson school students with motorcycles and British Superbike team member

Find out more about our Anderson School on the school’s website.