Team Talk: Getting to know… The “Irishman”

Yeah, OK, we get it. Everyone in V8 Supercars keeps going on about how it’s a team sport. But really, c’mon, how the hell is driving a car a team sport? We don’t see the big dog, RD, in the passenger seat changing gears for Lowndesy now do we?

Well, in the name of all things common sense, we thought it only sensible to introduce the rest of the motley crew that make up Red Bull Racing Australia.

Yeah there’s the glory hunters like Lowndesy and J-Dub, ATB, JJ and Dutto, but behind the scenes is a bunch of blokes who work furiously around the clock to put the “racing” into Red Bull Racing Australia.

While Dutto works on his lats and JJ sips on his soy latte, somebody has to do some work. So in between his barista and spotting duties, we caught with a little guy by the name of Irish.

You mightn’t recognise his face but if you take another look at our Harlem Shake video you’ll be able to identify him quite easily – he’s the shirtless git wearing a helmet atop a team-mate’s shoulders.

Q: Irish? What sort of a nickname is that…

A:  Well, ironically, I’m not even Irish. I’m British! And William John McGregor is my real name, but my parents call me John. Don’t ask me why, I just am. If anything, my nickname should be Scottish if you take my surname into account. Confused yet?

Q: A little… We’re more confused about what it is you do for the team. You always seem to be sitting in front of a computer screen and Dutto reckons he’s caught you on Facebook more than once during a race…

A: Haha. I’m a data engineer or more appropriately, a data bitch. And the job entails doing what I’m told and not answering back. Seriously though, it’s my job to monitor the cars’ data and report back to ATB and the engineers. You have to do this job to become a race engineer and Dutto, JJ and Cauchi all did this job to get where they are.

Q: If you weren’t working for a V8 Supercars team, what would you be doing?

A: From what I have seen so far, everyone that is in motorsport complains about motorsport but would never leave it. It’s just like a relationship really. So I would probably be working in another race series.

Q: What did you do before joining Triple Eight and how do you become a race engineer/mechanic?

A: I was wiring Motec systems into Lotus cars in Sydney and I wanted to be in V8 Supercars. So in 2011 I went to the Sydney 500 at Homebush and gave my CV to Adrian Burgess. He, of course, ignored me but in the end my rugged good looks and boyish charm became impossible to ignore.

Q: Tell us one thing about the Triple Eight team we don’t know?

A: Nuri Paterson, the chief financial officer, actually runs the whole show. And may I just say, what a wonderful job she is doing and that she is the best damn CFO in the world…

Shhh… I’m angling for a pay rise.

Q: Tell us one thing about Roland or Adrian they don’t want us to know?

A: My Visa is not permanent enough for that, sorry.

Q: What’s your most embarrassing moment as part of the team?

A: I took Ty Freele, Casey’s number one mechanic’s, car out for a quiet spin one day, looped it and managed to hit a kerb. It would have been alright had he not been sitting right beside me. I could have blamed it on Ludo. I had only just joined the team so yeah, it was a good start.

Q: Can anyone work in motorsport?

A: Yes. If they are willing to put the work in and have the right attitude, it’s very attainable. But unless you have a very thick skin, don’t bother applying. Did I mention I’m not even Irish?

Q: Be honest. If you could replace Craig or Jamie, which one would it be and with which celebrity would you replace them?

A: I’d replace them both and with smoking hot Victoria’s Secret models. And as part of my checklist I would ensure they were safely strapped in. Ask Dutto for a second opinion if you don’t think it is a good idea…

Q: What’s your dream job? And what’s the worst job you’ve ever had?

A: I like the job I have, but it would be my dream job if it paid ridiculous money and ATB gave me more time off. But then I think that is why it is called a dream job! Haha. I actually used to stock shelves in a servo but I got sacked from that, as I’m fairly sure I ate more food than I stocked.

I’ll just stick to what I know and hope Nuri comes through for me.