First day at the circuit at the entrance to the Algarve International Circuit’s paddock

It is hard when you start your degree to know where it will take you and what you will do in your time at university.

So much can happen in three years. Your career ideas may change multiple times, you will develop new skills and find new loves.

One thing you hope is that your passion will remain the same, or grow.

For me this could not have been more accurate. I have gone on a journey I never expected to happen, but my passion for motorsport and telling people’s stories is as strong now as it was the day I applied.

When given the chance of filming and producing a documentary I jumped at the idea but never in a million years did I expect it to take me where it did.

Mid-February I was sent a text by the person I am doing my documentary on asking if I would like to fly out to Portugal to film them testing at the official Aston Martin test weekend.

Team BRIT‘s Aston Martin Vantage

Obviously, I jumped at the chance.

Four days out in the Algarve filming Aston Martins at the Algarve International Circuit is my idea of paradise and definitely something I never expected to happen whilst studying for my degree.

It is after the excitement sinks in however that you realise how complicated it will be and how expensive.

When you tell people that you are flying out to Portugal to film a documentary for your degree, they tend to think the university will help fund it. That was not the case. The one downside of this amazing opportunity is the funding of it.

If you have time you can set up a crowd funder and hope people will help out but with two weeks to go until I flew out there wasn’t time.

So there I was sat at my laptop and having to face the pain of delving into a savings account I had so lovingly left alone for two and half years.

The trip made a serious dent in the ‘I don’t have a job after university’ emergency fund.

But it was worth every penny.

The camera equipment was a struggle in itself. I had to split stuff up between myself and my mum because it wouldn’t all fit in one hand luggage allocation – stressful.

Making sure I had packed it all up on the last day and trying to remember to not leave a GoPro on the dressing table was a scenario I could have done without.

But again, it was worth it.

I spent three days with four incredible men who had battled through adversity to be at that track, testing a car people dream of.

Filming at Turn 11 ‘Portimao’

At times I sat there in the loud, hectic garage unable to believe how much of a privilege this was.

I had the chance to tell the story of Ash Hall, a 27-year-old ex-serviceman who lost both of his legs in 2010 after stepping on an IED whilst serving in Afghanistan.

Although I came close to a break down over whether I felt I’d be able to do his story justice I could not be prouder of what him and I achieved in those few days.

If I was asked what I would be doing for my final project back in first year this would never have crossed my mind but I am so thankful that it did happen.


Take a look at my time out in Portugal in this whistle stop tour video…