22 Ben Norfolk
Invictus Games Racing
BRITISH GT CAREER
2018 British GT4, Invictus Games Racing Jaguar F-TYPE SVR GT4 with Jason Wolfe
When Ben Norfolk left university in 1999, he fulfilled a lifelong aspiration to join the RAF. After 18 months of technical training, the Aircraft Engineer was posted to a Hampshire-based Flying Squadron where he became part of the Chinook Fleet.
Several operational tours to Iraq and Afghanistan followed. In 2008, Ben assisted with a multiple casualty recovery at Camp Bastion, which proved to be a seminal moment in not only his career but his very existence.
The desperate scenes that Ben witnessed that day reshaped his life. It was, in Ben’s own words, “debilitating”. The events of that day ate away at him, culminating in complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD), anxiety and depression.
He was medically discharged from the RAF in November 2017.
A strong network of friends and family helped Ben through his recovery, with several charities helping him to rediscover the self-esteem and confidence so badly damaged by the original event. Mission Motorsport, the forces’ motorsport charity, helped Ben to revive his lust for life. A car-focused placement brokered by them led to him securing a full-time role restoring and racing vintage pre-war Bentleys. The sense of purpose he takes from contributing to a team once again is priceless.
He has also gained his International C Licence, taken part in the Race of Remembrance and is helping other injured service personnel with their own recovery journey. Outside of work, Ben’s passion for cars continues through the care he gives to his Classic Mini Sprint – his first ever car, which he still owns!