An interesting person always draws lots of attention and brings good mood. That was exactly the case with Formula One racing driver Karun Chandhok. The lively talk about his life and career and the numerous autographs he gave after that made this Tuesday Coventry Conversation one of the most exciting and well attended meetings for this term.
Karun was born and raised in India where, ironically, there was never a Formula One race when he was a child. His family were those who “pushed” him into racing and he does not seem to regret it at all:
“It is one of those businesses where you have passion for the job,” says Karun, “There is no other sport in the world that combines so much competition, technology, sport itself and drama.”
Written by Galya Dimitrova, First Year Student
It turns out, however, that behind the scenes racing is much more hard work than a mere pleasure:
“You need a huge understanding of the business and how complicated it is.” says Karun.
This is of a significant importance especially when it comes to dealing with brands trying to promote a certain value.
“You need to understand what each brand is trying to achieve with its association,” adds Karun, “What I do is sit down and make clear what each company wants.”
According to him, if you are in this business you have to think about a lot of circumstances and consider costs. He describes it as an ultimate challenge to all – drivers, engineers, designers.
That is why apart from inspiring Karun defines his job as “tremendously infuriating” at times:
“Formula 1 is a sport for 1or 2 hours a day, in the rest of the time is business,” he adds. “You have to sell your stuff yourself. People want to see you not some agent’s face.
So it is not about the adrenaline and the pleasure of racing. Karun says he faces challenges sometimes like trying not to fall asleep when driving for many hours.
He also points out that there are a lot of great drivers but what makes you different is the ability to be a leader.
“Everyone wants to be a F1 driver but not everyone can.” He pointed out.
But surely everyone who wanted to meet a real one and make a picture with him did not miss the chance to attend this unforgettable conversation.