UK – London-based entrepreneur Ribi Adeshokan has entered his country into the lavish and highly-competitive world of car racing and has ambitious plans to drive African motorsport and build a multi-million dollar racing industry on the continent. Called Nigeria Racing Eagle (NRE), the team says it hopes to compete at major motor racing events over the next few months, including the FIA GT3 series and sports car endurance races.
“My philosophy is whatever I want to do, I go for the best,” Adeshokan, team principal and owner of NRE said Monday, moments after unveiling a green and silver Audi R8 LMS as the team’s car at the Africa Village, a London Olympics exhibition site designed to highlight the continent’s cultural, artistic and sport assets.
Adeshokan says his team will proudly “fly the flag of Africa,” being the first Nigerian racing team to represent the continent at world motorsports. An engineer by training, Adeshokan’s association with motorsport first started as a hobby in early 2000. But he soon turned his passion into business and in 2007 he set up a racing company called GRC Motorsport.
“The biggest challenge is people believing in my dream,” he says. “I found out that people struggle to understand and most people never can imagine that motorsport can come to Africa or to Nigeria.”
Adeshokan, who recently appointed veteran British motorsport executive John Wickham as team manager, says that right now there is a “50-50” chance for NRE to be ready for the GT3 race in Moscow in early September.
“Motorsport is the richest sport in the world — it’s a multi-billion dollar economy, so why don’t we also tap into it.”
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