Christopher Ward welcomes motorsport racer Jody Fannin and Rallycross driver Paige Bellerby to their unique Challenger Programme, following the Need for Speed competition.
Premium watch brand Christopher Ward is delighted to announce that British racing driver Jody Fannin and Rallycross driver Paige Bellerby are winners of the brand’s Need for Speed competition, which launched in September 2017. The competition, which was open to UK-based grass-roots level¹ motorbike or car racing drivers, invited entrants to apply for a place in the Christopher Ward Challenger Programme. After initially setting out to recruit one motorsport star into the Challenger Programme, Christopher Ward Co-Founder Mike France was so impressed by both Jody and Paige, and their passion for their sport, that it was decided to offer both a place in the Programme.
Since its introduction in 2013, the Christopher Ward Challenger Programme has worked to provide support for budding grass-roots sports men and women, with genuine world-class potential but limited resources, to help them reach their sporting goals. Current and previous Challengers have included world-record holder Team GB Paralympian Sammi Kinghorn, Olympic Gold Medallist Will Satch, Olympic semi-finalist Team GB skeet shooter Amber Hill, explorer and ultra-marathon runner Jamie Maddison and inspirational adventurers ‘Team Horsepower’ who have climbed some of the most challenging mountain peaks in central Asia.
Jody Fannin is a 24-year-old British racing driver, from South Godstone in Surrey. Having won the 2012 British GT4 Championship and the 2017 European Le Mans Series, Jody is now hoping to compete in the ELMS and Le Mans 2018. Throughout his career Jody has been nominated for a number of awards and was a finalist in the Racing Steps Foundation Young Driver of the Year category.
Paige Bellerby is a 21-year-old rallycross driver from Darlington, North Yorkshire, and has gone from strength to strength in her career. At the age of 14 she competed in the British Rallycross Championship and won – making her the first female and youngest person to win the Championship. Paige now dreams of winning next year’s Championship, before taking her driving skills to an international level in the RX2.
The Need for Speed competition was launched in September to celebrate the launch of Christopher Ward’s new C7 Rapide motorsport collection and ran for six weeks to reflect the six watches in the range. Entrants were asked to complete an entry, explaining why they would make a good Challenger, what their ultimate career ambition is, and what they need to do to achieve this.
Jody and Paige were among shortlisted entries, and after a series of meetings with the Christopher Ward team, Jody, Paige and the Founders of the premium watch brand, agreed to form a partnership.
Jody and Paige will join the Challenger Programme officially in January for two years, joining current Challengers Olympic Gold Medallist Will Satch, Para-athlete Sammi Kinghorn and ultra-marathon runner Jamie Maddison.
Co-Founder of Christopher Ward, Mike France, said: “Here at Christopher Ward we’re huge motorsports fans and regularly find the passion of motorsport and motor racing inspirational, therefore it felt right to launch the Need for Speed competition to honour our new C7 Rapide collection and start our hunt for one of the UK’s best talent’s in this field of sport.
We’re thrilled to welcome both Jody and Paige on board the Christopher Ward Challenger Programme. We established this Programme to ensure that up-and-coming sportsmen and women have the support they deserve and it’s clear to see that they both possess a real talent in their sports and we look forward to working with them on their journey to success.”
Jody Fannin says, “I’m absolutely delighted to become a Christopher Ward Challenger! What really attracted me to the Programme is the brand’s ethos for helping individuals who have had to overcome challenges to get to where they are today. I’m also a huge fan of their motorsport collection, and already own one of the timepieces, so I am really excited to see where the partnership takes us and I’m looking forward to sharing the journey with the brand.”
Paige Bellerby says, “I’m thrilled to win the Need for Speed competition and I can’t wait to work with the team at Christopher Ward! Specialising in Rallycross means that I’m one of very few women competing and whilst I’m so proud of my achievements to date, there is still a long way for me to go to break down stereotypes and achieve my dreams. I believe that the support from the Challenger Programme will really help me on this journey and I’m excited for what the future holds.”