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SIM RACING TEAM
Andy Morgan Age: 62 Lives: Saundersfoot, Wales, UK Andy   first   came   across   sim   racing   in   early October    2012.        He    was    watching    some rallying   videos   on   YouTube   when   he   came across   an   iRacing   video.      He   sat   and   was glued   to   the   screen   for   the   full   two   and   a three   quarter   hours.      It   was   the   2.4   Hours Of   Daytona.      Two   weeks   later Andy   had   his first rig.   Andy    had    been    a    rally    co-driver    for    25 years,   competing   at   all   levels   from   club events   up   to   WRC.      But   when   he   retired from     competition     he     desperately     missed     the     adrenaline     buzz     of competing.  Sim racing now gives him his fix. Andy’s    rallying    career    spanned    25    years,    during    which    time    he    rose through   the   ranks   of   events   from   club   rallying   to   WRC   events.      Andy competed   all   over   the   UK   and   as   far   afield   as   Yugoslavia,   Belgium   and Ireland.      Twice   crowned   Welsh   National   Rally   Co-Driver.      Andy   won   the inaugural     Welsh     National title     when     it     was     first introduced   back   in   1990   in a   Ford   Escort   RS.      He   had   a year      long      battle      with another    co-driver    to    win that   title.      That   was   Phil Mills,   who   went   on   to   win the            World            Rally Championship        alongside Petter      Solberg      in      the Subaru Impreza in 2003. Andy   also   went   on   to   win the   title   again   in   2007,   this time in a Subaru Impreza. Finally,   in   2012   and   decided   to   hang   up   his   helmet   and   retire,   much   to the   dismay   of   his   then   regular   driver   in   the   Subaru   who   tried   to   get Andy to   carry   on.      Andy   would   be   a   liar   if   he   said   he   didn’t   miss   the   thrill   of competing,   but   what   he   doesn’t   miss   is   the   aches   and   pains   for   days afterwards   from   the   pounding   you   get   through   competing   on   the   forest roads of the UK rallying scene. So   it   was   time   for   something   new   to   occupy   his   time…   enter   sim   racing.     The rest as they say is history… His   wife,   Sandra,   is   not   a   great   lover   of Andy’s   new   found   passion   for   sim racing   and   banished   Andy   to   his   garden   shed   to   nuture   his   love   of   virtual competition.      “If   he   wants   to   play   with   his   toys   he   can   go   outside   like most   kids   do…!”      So   every   day   Andy   disappears   to   his   shed   where   the sound   of   high   powered   race   cars   can   be   heard   echoing   amongst   the   trees in his garden.   “If   she   thinks   this   is   just   a   fad   and   I’ll   lose   interest,   she’s   in   for   a   very long wait…!” says Andy with a wry smile.   Andy’s   day   job   is   delivering   newspapers,   but   he   has   been   off   work   since the   beginning   of   August   with   joint   and   muscular   problems.      Doctors   are still   trying   to   get   to   the   bottom   of   it   all,   it   seems Andy   is   somewhat   of   an enigma   to   them   at   the   moment.      It   has   affected   his   sim   racing,   most recently   during   the   Le   Mans   24   Hour   race,   when   Andy   elected   to   sit   out the   race   in   the   pits   as   he   didn’t   feel   well   enough   to   get   behind   the   wheel and    drive    the    HPD.        So    he    just    looked    after    the    team    strategy    and spotting   duties.      It   comes   and   goes   in   waves,   like   a   rollercoaster.      Andy can   have   a   couple   of   good   days   followed   by   a   couple   of   bad   days   when even   getting   out   of   bed   is   a   struggle.      “When   I’m   like   that,   if   I   was   a
horse   they’d   shoot   me…!” he says gravely.   He   is   one   of   the   founder members    of    4X    Racing, along     with     team     mate Marc   Figueras.      The   team are   an   enthusiastic   bunch of   guys   of   all   ages   ranging from   20   to   62…   Andy   has the     dubious     honour     of being   the   oldest   member of   the   team   by   4   months from       David       Sustello.       They    both    reckon    they have   pairs   of   shoes   older than         the         youngest member of the team.   They   never   take   themselves   too   seriously,   but   do   race   hard   and   fair.   Andy   also   organises   the   4X   Racing   Lotus   79   Trophy   series   on   Friday evenings    (20:00    UK    time)    with    trophies    awarded    to    the    top    three finishers in the series each season. Andy   currently   races quite   a   range   of   cars on    a    regular    basis.      Mostly      on      league races     or     endurance events,     tending     to stay        away        from official    sprint    races as    they    tend    to    be too   full   of   first   turn heros      these      days. The      HPD,      Dallara Indycar,      Lotus      79, Mercedes    AMG    GT3, Formula   Renault   2.0, Aston     Martin     DBR9, Mazda   MX5   and   Skip Barber   being   some   of the     most     favoured mounts    of    late.        Mostly    a    road    course driver,    but    also    enjoys    the    larger    oval tracks too.   His     rig     is     an     ever     evolving     piece     of hardware.      From   the   initial   GT   Omega   rig and    Thrustmaster    wheel,    it    now    has    an AccuForce   wheel   and   a   SimXperience   Stage 1    motion    platform    and    Heusenveld    Pro pedals.        Currently    running    on    triple    23” screens   with   a   fourth   USB   monitor,   two   10” tablets    for    irPitCrew    and    JRT    (Joel    Real Timing)   plus   a   5”   HDMI   homebuilt   screen for   a   dashboard   and   finally   an   Arduino   Pitboard   and   Arduino   iFlag module…   oh   and   don’t   forget   two   DSD   button   boxes,   a   Fanatec   H pattern   shifter   and   a   DSD   sequential   shifter.      All   this   is   run   from   a purpose   built   Intel   i7   based   system   with   a   Zotac   Nvidia   980Ti   Amp Extreme   GPU,   16Gb   of   RAM   and   two   SSD   hard   drives.      He   has   thought about   getting   a   Rift,   but   feels   he’d   like   to   wait   and   see   if   the   next evolution brings better resolution, before he heads that way.    People   seeing   his   rig   for   the   first   time   are   rather   shocked   at   the   size and   complexity   of   it.   The   usual   comments are    “Oh,    it’s    a    bit more   involved   than   a PlayStation then…!”   Andy       also       paints most   of   the   cars   for 4X    Racing    and    feels he   at   last   is   getting to         grips         with Photoshop   and   keeps trying   to   improve   his skills. One   of Andy’s   biggest fans    is    his    6    yr    old c        r        o        s        s        Terrier,    Henry.        He can   usually   be   found sat   in   the   chair   behind   Andy’s   rig   avidly   watching   to   see   the   outcome of the races. “He’s   quite   an   iRacing   fan”   Andy   said,   “He   very   rarely   misses   a   race unless of course its dinnertime, which does take priority still..!”
A Welsh made rallycar... this one had a huge Rover V8 in the back... a real beast...! Andy's 2nd Welsh National Title The good old days - a real cool dude back in 1986 Funny... the water only came halfway up the ducks...! Rolling Reg Davies's Vauxhall Nova out of the Cambrian Rally The car - Mitsubishi Starion Turbo Group N The Fram Welsh Rally... a round of the Welsh National Rally Championship