EB: Obviously you’ve raced with someone young like your brother and a couple of other people that you raced against in the series that you’ve done so far, particularly MSA Formula. Why would you encourage kids to start out in motorsport?
PP: I think motorsport is a great sport and it’s unlike a lot of other sports. You can obviously be a driver if you want to and I want to be a driver because it’s so much fun driving in fast cars, karts, whatever. There are so many different areas. Motorsport is such a good sport because it’s not just about the drivers. In Formula One, you’ve got teams of thousands of people all doing specific areas: engineering, electronic, aerodynamics. There are so many different areas that you can get involved in in motorsport. Also you can get involved in other ways as volunteers; marshals etc. There’s so many different aspects to the sport that often people forget about and it’s just such a good sport. In terms of spectacle, it’s the best sport because you get Lamborghini’s, Formula One cars, which look awesome, and those in the World Endurance Championship (WEC). They all just look like awesome cars and the sound and atmosphere at a race track is almost unrivalled and why it’s such a great sport. Especially if you’re a driver or involved in a team, it’s a really adrenaline filled sport.
EB: So did you want to be a racing driver when you were younger or did you have other ambitions?
PP: I didn’t really know what I wanted to do when I was younger. I played a lot of sports: squash, hockey, cricket, things like that. I had a go at all sports but I just got into karting and thought that it was really good fun. I turned out to be alright at it, so I carried on doing it. It’s just what I really enjoy doing. When I was younger, I didn’t say “I really want to be a racing driver”. I didn’t know what I wanted to do but now I’ve raced a bit and done a lot of other bits, I know that I really want to be a racing driver and I’m trying all I can and doing everything I can to make that happen.
EB: What advice would you give to young people wanting to follow in your footsteps?
PP: Well I don’t think I could say follow in my footsteps because I haven’t got that far yet but hopefully in a few years’ time I might be at a stage where I can give advice. I think the main thing about everything, especially in motorsport, is you’ve got to enjoy what you’re doing. I mean I really enjoy racing. I really enjoy everything about it, all the social media, everything. I just love being in the motorsport world. If you enjoy what you’re doing, whatever it is, whether its motorsport or whatever, you’ll have a great time doing it and you’re going to be better at it in general. If you’re not that good at driving, it doesn’t matter. You can be an engineer. You can be a mechanic if you like getting hands on. Even PR and motorsport journalism. Obviously you know a lot about that. So that’s another way to go. It’s whatever floats your boat really. If you like doing something, then carry on doing it.
EB: You say that you’re not fit to give advice because you haven’t been in the sport long enough, but where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time?
PP: Well I’ve been in the sport for quite a while. I’ve been karting since I was 9 years old, so I’ve been in the sport for nearly 10 years now. I feel like I have to wait a few years, when I’ve experienced a bit more, before I start giving a lot of advice. In 10 years’ time I’d like to see myself, if possible, in a premier class of racing, whether that’s Formula 1 or WEC, World Touring Cars, British Touring Cars, anything really. A top class is where I’d like to be racing. Hopefully at the front and with the top team racing for wins and championships. I love driving but I also like winning a lot as well. The buzz you get from winning is something else! So if I could be winning at the highest level and known as one of the best drivers, that’s what I aspire to. That’s where I’d like to be in 10 years.