Any motor racing enthusiast will still be revelling in the afterglow of the F1 finale show-down. No matter where your allegiance lies, it was a thrilling ride right to the very end. So to keep the adrenaline flowing we popped up to Sharm’s very own raceway to interview Ghibli’s recently acquired racing star Maxi Czyszek.
Maxi joined the Ghibli team in July 2013 as a professional coach for the new karting school for kids and to give private lessons for beginnings upto a professional level.
She brings with her a whole heap of experience and style.
So who is this quietly spoken 20 year old? Maxi is a professional race driver for karting and the winner of the 2012 season of the ‘Karting Champions Series’.
She started her adrenaline fuelled career at the young age of 10, when she surprised professional competitors on her ‘rookie’ race by beating them all and coming in first.
The previous year her Mother enrolled her into the summer camp called ‘moto camp’ in her native country of Poland. She tried karting and “didn’t really like it” but the following year she thought she would give it another try.
This is when she was encouraged to enter the professional competition and found herself on the podium for 1st place. After this she decided to make karting her career and got her Professional Karting Licence from C.I.K (Commission Internationale de Karting) and the F.I.A (Federation InternationaleAutomabile).
The next years saw her zooming around Europe racing in Poland, Italy, Spain, Germany and the Czech Republic competing as a Professional racing driver and picking up sponsorship deals from X’zuit ( Hong Kong racing gear producer) Aerostyle (Italian helmet and airbrushing specialist), JM Racing (importer/exporter of Kart parts) and X Design (Graphic Designer).
Her main achievement to date is becoming the Senior Winner of the Karting Championship Series and also 5 times Champion of indoor karting championship.
Maxi explains that at Ghibli they have 6.5 horsepower karts for novice/normal drivers and 9.0hp karts for experienced expert drivers. As a professional driver she drives a kart of 28hp which can reach up to speeds of 120 kph. A karting team consists of the driver and a professional mechanic team which all adds to the expense.
One championship racing weekend can add up to over 5,000 euro – so sponsorship is necessary. Indoor karting is different as everyone drives the same kart and there are no team mechanics to ‘tweak’ the karts, putting the emphasis on the driver rather than the kart. She has also raced in the DD2 category which is 32hp with two gears. It’s a different style of driving and feels faster.
Obviously Maxi loves the adrenalin rush of her sport, but there is a lot more to it than just sitting in the kart and driving around the track.
She is a slim and fit woman, but one month before a race she starts intense training.
There is nothing specific but she swims and cycles and completes gym exercises to strengthen her arms and neck muscles. She has also had her fair share of injuries, broken or fractured ribs being the most common complaint.
When I asked her about how she mentally prepares or what is the personality of a racing driver she says she is a quiet person, but very competitive and completely concentrated on racing.
She never gives up, even if she is at the back of the pack and will always keep pushing until the end.
This is a determined young lady with a passion to drive and achieve.
When talking about her future; Maxi hopes to compete in the Egyptian Championships. She enjoys her work with Ghibli as a coach and is keen to encourage new and young drivers.
It has been a fairly quiet year but she assures me that 2015 will be a fun and exciting year to watch. Ghibli are planning to host the “Egyptian National Rotax Max Challenge” and the “Ghibli Speed Challenge”.
She is also excited to watch her friend Max Versteppen become the youngest ever F1 driver at 17 competing in the Red Bull Junior team.
Maxi is a joy to talk to; she is articulate and savvy. She knows her racing and says she is very impressed with Ghibli’s standards “even in Europe not all of the raceways have racing overalls – here it is very impressive, everyone gets an overall, balaclava, and helmet”.
She also says that Ghibli gives everyone a chance to really feel like a professional racing driver – so why not give it a whirl and go racing around the track, who knows you could be signing up for one of her private lessons and find yourself joining the Professional drivers rank.
Ghibli have ‘Sunday super special’ deals for residents which includes a five minute warm-up and a 10 lap race at discounted prices, or you can race any day of the week between 11am – 10pm at regular rates.