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Veterans Invited to Join Mountain Road Racing Team Program ‘Veterans Into Motorsport’

Start your engines! The Mountain Road Racing Team is about to take on its first rally,

and young veterans are invited to take part. Army veteran and Team Principal, Robert

Kilsby shares their exciting vision.

 Mountain Road Racing "Veterans Into Motorsport"
Robert Kilsby - Founder of Mountain Road Racing "Veterans Into Motorsport"

From Burning Out to Gearing Up!


Veteran Robert Kilsby enlisted aged 17, completing over 21 years in SAS, Commando and

Intelligence special operations. After transitioning out of the military, he moved on to a

career in Crisis and Emergency Management. Unfortunately, these roles culminated in a

post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosis in 2014.


“I had a very unusual and busy career and I always had very strong coping mechanisms and kept pursuing excellence, but it all started to unravel around 2012,” Robert says.


One of the activities that helped Robert through this difficult time was restoring his 1978 Alfa Romeo. This peaked his passion for performance driving, which eventually became a gateway to competitive racing.


 

“I found some people racing their cars in Brisbane and my candlelight started to flicker again. It literally saved me, and I discovered that motorsport can be very useful for Veterans’ recovery,”

 

It was through this love of racing and rallying that Robert had the idea to establish a team

organisation and competition program for other veterans like himself. Fast forward to

today, and the Mountain Road Racing Team is gearing up for their first rally program.


Keys In The Ignition!


Following years of development and experience, and in partnership with the Australian

Special Air Service Association (ASASA), by this September the Mountain Road Racing Team

will have expanded to two Alfa Romeos, two drivers, a Team Manager, Marketing Director,

Sports Psychologist, Physiotherapist, Team Photographer and an ESO LO. There have,

however, been a few bumps in the road.


 

“I’ve done about 15 major tarmac rallies and my last one was in 2018 at Rally Adelaide. My car wasn’t ready, so I ran my tow car,” Robert laughs. The Team motto is “It’s Always Too Soon To Quit!”.


“I couldn’t do much after that, although in 2021 I trained and paddled a sea kayak 2,450km down the Murray River to raise awareness for our homeless veterans. On return home, I was diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.”

 

Mountain Road Racing Team plans were paused for over a year so Robert could focus on his

treatment and recovery. Today, Robert is cancer-free, and the Team’s launch is back on

track. After building their first team of Veteran Participants, the Team will compete in the


Snowy River Sprint, a National-level tarmac rally out of Lakes Entrance, Victoria in early

September.


 

“Our original plan was to have at least two tarmac rallies done in the first half of this season, but delays have occurred as we’ve been concentrating on getting our cars and the platform established for this program ready to go,” Robert explains.


“We’ve been able to quickly build a team of terrific people. We’ve applied a lot of energy to it and now we are well underway with establishing our operating procedures and onboarding Veteran Participants.”


 

Rallying Around Veterans!


Research has shown that participation in extreme sports, specifically motorsports can act as a positive intervention for veterans with physical injuries. This is due to high levels of achievement, team spirit, adrenaline rush, competition, equality and a familiar environment that these activities offer. This in mind, Robert has focused efforts on providing a safe space for young veterans to experience the major therapeutic benefits of motorsport, just as he did in his time of need.


 

“This is all for the veterans – every dollar that we receive goes into this program. We

understand that transitioning out of the military can be very difficult, especially so for those recovering from physical and mental injuries incurred from their service, so this program ‘Veterans Into Motorsport’ brings our onboarded Participants back to something akin to where they’ve come from,”

 

Robert anticipates the program to assist up to 120 veterans nation-wide – all Services, men

and women, all abilities. Each year 12 will be trained as navigators, 8 as Crew Chiefs,

and many others as Service Crews and even Event Officials. Once fully established, the

Team will enter two cars in in at least six national-level tarmac rallies each calendar year,

with our veteran Participants forming both competing car’s teams. Robert and his nephew,

Infantry veteran Alick will be the Team drivers.


Young veterans of all abilities, genders and defence force experiences are welcome to join.

All participants will undergo bespoke onboarding, and with training and travel expenses

covered by the program, veterans can simply engage fully in the recovery benefits such

excellent activity brings.


Find out more and make further enquiries through visiting the Mountain Road Racing

website at mountainroadracing.au.


Contact: robert@mountainroadracing.au

Express Your Interest!



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