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Les Hayes

An Extraordinary Fan

Over the years we’ve marked the passing of many in motorsport, drivers, team owners and administrators – Today though we mark the passing yesterday, in tragic circumstances, of a fan.

Les Hayes was a well known figure in racing paddocks up and down the UK and the reactions to her untimely passing from drivers, marshals, team owners, journalists and not least from her fellow fans tell just how much she added to the show.

An ever present in my time covering the British GT Championship in the early days of DSC, she could be relied upon to be there, rain or shine, always smiling, enjoying the sport and the banter, enjoying it all but, in particular, bouying up the teams that she had 'adopted'.

She had her favourites of course and it’s a mark of the lady that those friendships extended far, far beyond race weekends.

Speaking earlier to a tearful Stuart Scott there were many happy memories, in particular from a windy day in 2003 at Knockhill (are there any other sort there?) when circumstances saw the Scott/ Wood pedalled VW Golf running in a strong third place with a Morgan, recovering after an earlier incident, trying to find a way back past the bright yellow machine:

“Every time I got to the hairpin I could hear Les and one of her friends screaming, urging us on!”

There are similar stories from those she particularly followed in the BTCC, a true superfan, a real lady and an individual that will be sorely missed by all that knew her.

RIP Les and our sincerest condolences to her family and many, many friends in motorsport and far beyond. 

GG