POSING for photographs alongside a BMW emblazoned with racing stickers, Andrew Tucker and Luke Pound are getting used to fulfilling the traditional pre-season media obligations.

The Britcar Trophy Championship campaign gets under way at Silverstone this weekend, and the duo will be in the thick of it as they kick-off a second year racing for Dave Player’s Team BRIT, a group of disabled drivers who compete against their able-bodied counterparts.

Tucker and Pound are loving life on the race track, which includes the possibility of a Le Mans 24-hour drive, and it’s all a reward for what they have had to endure over the past decade.

In 2013, Tucker, from Llandevaud near Newport, was riding his motorbike when a car ploughed into him while stationary at the Coldra roundabout.

He tore his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which required partial reconstruction, was left with an inverted right ankle, suffered muscle damage to his lower leg and a large piece of muscle had to be removed from his calf.

He also has limited movement and deformity in his right shoulder, trapped nerves in his neck, scoliosis and spondylitis in his spine and a deformed right hand and foot.

Alongside the physical damage, the 33-year-old, who was the singer in heavy metal band Against Fate, suffers with PTSD, depression and anxiety.

“I’m okay talking about it now,” he said. “It’s good because it highlights how sport can help with mental and physical health. Being with the team has allowed me to open up about it and put it in perspective.

“I used to think ‘Woe is me’ and whether or not I’m going to be able to do something.But now I look at it as I was involved in an RTA and I’m able to race cars.

“Last year was my first full season with the team. I had a double podium, two third places, in my first race weekend and I also had a podium at Silverstone.”

He added: “The incident left me with PTSD and I was in quite a bad place.

“After spending six or seven years in and out of hospital, I wanted to try something that was good for me mentally, as well as physically.

“I started off in the Team Brit academy and it was nice to be somewhere I felt safe and comfortable, and it has helped me massively for when I drive on the roads.

“It has also helped my day-to-day life and made relationships and friendships a lot stronger.”

If things go to plan for Team Brit, they could be the first all-disabled team to compete at Le Mans, and Tucker is confident that will happen.

“The team is working incredibly hard to get to Le Mans,” he said. “Everyone is pushing to get there, but there are lots of hoops to jump through first.

“We’re going to be moving to the British GT Championship, which is the upper echelons of motorsport in the UK.

“The plan, which is a three-year plan, is to move from that to Le Mans, and I can’t see it not happening.”

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As for Pound, who lives in Abertillery, next month marks 10 years since he suffered life-changing injuries after a motorbike accident in his hometown of Swindon.

In trying to avoid a collision with a cyclist at traffic lights, the 32-year-old smashed into metal railings that destroyed all five nerves into his left arm.

This has left him with no movement in his left hand and very little movement in his left arm.

He broke his nose, cheek, jaw and forearm, has metal plates in three different body parts and has had to have a toe amputated. Surgeons also used a piece of Pound’s skull to help restructure his nose.

“It all started with Team Brit about seven years after the accident,” he said.

“I had managed to get back on a motorbike and got in contact with a charity called The Bike Experience. After that I started doing track days in cars and in 2019 joined the Team Brit academy.

“I did two track days with them, sat down with Dave the owner and he asked me if I wanted to go racing.

“I got my racing licence last February and 2020 was my first season – it all went very quickly.

“I was always interested in motorsport but never thought I would become a racing driver.

“I’m ready and raring to go at Silverstone this weekend.”

And on the prospect of competing at Le Mans, an event which has been won by the likes of Fernando Alonso and Graham Hill, he added: “That is the aim.

“Once we’re in the British GT Championship it makes getting to Le Mans more possible.

“We’re all hoping to be the first disabled British team to race there, and me the first one-armed driver.

“Considering where we’ve all come from, and the fact the team only started in 2015, it would be some achievement.”

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Nerys Pearce, whose mother was born in Llanelli, is another member of Team BRIT, although she won't be racing this weekend.

In 2008, she was hit by a car when on her motorbike, leaving the 38-year-old, pictured below, with several serious injuries.

The National Wales:

Her left leg was completely crushed, her right leg was damaged, her right shoulder was badly dislocated and she sustained a serious head injury.

She underwent drug treatments and spinal blocks, until her body reacted badly, resulting in a spinal cord injury which left her paralysed from the chest down.

Undeterred, Pearce took part in Enduroman, a 300-mile triathlon from London to Paris, racing as part of a team of adaptive female athletes who broke the world record.

She then claimed a remarkable 10 medals across three sports at the 2016 Invictus Games – the most any competitor has won in one games.

In 2018, she competed for Wales at the Commonwealth Games in Australia, coming fourth in para-powerlifting, while a year later she conquered Race Across America, regarded as the toughest cycle race in the world.

The Britcar Trophy Championship features four different classes, with some 40 cars on the track for each weekend’s two races.

Tucker drives a BMW M249i in class one and is partnered by team-mate Matty Street, while Pound and Pearce team up together in the class three BMW 118.

The National Wales:

Team BRIT's Luke Pound, Aaron Morgan, Andrew Tucker, Bobby Trundley

Player formed Team BRIT six years ago to give disabled people the opportunity to step up from karting and compete against able-bodied drivers.

The team’s own academy gives those with disabilities a chance to show their driving skills in cars with revolutionary hand controls and adaptations.

“We are one of the most determined teams and we are known as the most inspirational,” said Welshman Tucker.

“What makes us so unique is that we work together in such a good way. No-one feels sorry for themselves and everyone pushes as hard as possible.

“It doesn’t matter what disability you have, the cars are set-up so anyone can drive them. I would 100 per cent recommend it to people and we’ve got the academy to find the talent out there.

“If we can put disability motorsport in the public eye then we’ll end up with more disabled drivers joining. It’s the only sport where able-bodied and disabled people can compete together.”

As well as drivers with physical disabilities, Team BRIT has on its books racers who have autism and dyslexia.

“I’ve benefitted massively from being in Team Brit,” said Pound.

“It’s good to be able to talk to team-mates who are experiencing the same feelings.

“Having these people around you makes it easier to discuss what is going on because they’ve been in the same, or worse, situations.”

Among those on the team is karting champion Bobby Trundley, who suffers with autism, paralysed Invictus Games champion Pearce, Aaron Morgan, who broke his spine in 2006 when attempting a jump on his favourite motocross track, and Matty Street, diagnosed with dyslexia, dyspraxia and Asperger’s at school.