His Mum recalls with a cringe, calling him away from his Playstation 3 Gran Turismo game.
She regrets that now because Jann Mardanborough has won a professional racing contract, having won a contest for other motorsport gaming enthusiasts.
“It (professional motorsport) was a dream, but I never thought it would could about through playing a racing game,” – but that’s exactly how it did happen for Jann Mardanborough. Last summer, Jann entered a national (UK) virtual racing competition and won. The prize was to race against 11 other finalists from all over Europe, but, this time in a real car. Jann won that race.
Jann says he originally found the step up to real life racing as “easy” because he was used to it from his Playstation experience. ”In my first race at Pembury, I was okay with having cars whizzing around me at 110mph, because I’ve done that on the computer game all the time.”
Last month, Jann joined three other gaming champions to form a team at the Dubai 24 Hour Endurance race. Their aim was to finish, but they ended up on the podium, with Jann finishing third. Former Formula One World Champion, Damon Hill has declared the transformation from computer game to real life racing as ”Amazing. To transfer from gaming to real life racing like this is incredible. A lot of (Formula One) drivers and teams have started to invest in racing simulators.”
Jann Mardanborough has been labelled the next Justin Hamilton – and not just because of his looks. A new generation of motor racing superstar looks to have been unveiled. Parents everywhere will be gritting their teeth though, once youngsters hear of the key to Jann Mardanborough’s success – playing too much Playstation 3!