Alan Auerbach in action

ALAN Auerbach has been awarded the Motorsport Ireland Dunlop Hawthorn trophy for the first time during an awards ceremony held at the Mansion House last weekend.
The 34-year-old from Clondalkin picked up the award after winning the 2017 Irish Strykers Championship – having finished runner up during the previous three years.
“It is very difficult to win,” Auerbach told the Dublin Gazette. “It is open to every class and I race in a one-make series, which makes it even more special to win it because it involves cars that are all identical.
“It’s a great achievement. It’s high on every competitor’s list as something to try and win each year.”
The car Auerbach now competes in is owned by his father, with the two having built it together back in 2011.
Like most in the Stryker class, they run and maintain the car themselves. The nature of the Stryker class ensures exciting action is always on offer, with each car identical – allowing driver ability coming out on top.
“It is a very enjoyable class to race in. They are very powerful, lightweight cars and they make for great close racing because they are all identical cars and it is literally down to the drivers. They are always a favourite with the spectators because they offer great racing. There would probably be more overtaking in one Stryker race than there would be in a whole year in Formula 1,” said Auerbach.
“I started in go kart racing when I was 13 and raced for about two years before the money dried up. It was a very expensive hobby, especially back then when money was harder earned. Some competitors would throw money in an effort to be successful, whereas we worked on a shoe string budget and used to rock up with our go kart in a little trailer and compete against these guys.
When it comes to racing, it is clear to see where Auerbach gets his inspiration from.
“My father raced in the VW championships back in 1985 and I think he built that car himself as well. When I was two or three years old, I would have been watching him working on cars at the back of the house, trying to steal his spanners out of the toolbox,” Auerbach quipped fondly.
It looks like motorsport will continue to run through the Auerbach family, with Alan’s 18-month-old son having attended nearly all of his races this year.
“He’s already a petrol head in the making so I’ll have to start saving up for a go kart for him for when he’s eight!”
Elsewhere at the awards event, fellow Clondalkin man Andrei Dabija was given the National Novice Cadet Kart title, presented by Brian Kavanagh, for his efforts in 2017.