Tag Archives: IAM Roadsmart

Win VIP lunch at Silverstone

If you’re a grown up and perhaps it’s been quite a while since you had a driving refresher course, we always recommend members look at IAM Roadsmart options.

And here’s a fab offer to encourage you to find out more…

To celebrate the launch of their Mature Driver Review, IAM Roadsmart is offering two competition prizes (each for two people) to win a three-course lunch with legendary rally driver Paddy Hopkirk at the (BRDC) British Racing Drivers Club Clubhouse at Silverstone Circuit on Thursday 15 June 2017.

The BRDC Clubhouse is not normally open to the public so this is an added venue bonus where prize winners will meet the great man himself and hear some of the amazing stories that have made Paddy such a legend in the world rallying scene.

Motorsports legend – Paddy Hopkirk MBE

Most famous for winning the 1964 Monte Carlo and 1967 Acropolis Rallies, Paddy also raced at the fearsome Le Mans 24 Hour race as well as many other circuits around the world. He was also greatly admired for giving up a sure win in the 1968 London-Sydney Marathon to rescue a fellow competitor from his burning car.

But the photo we’ve chosen to illustrate is Paddy re-taking his Advanced Driver test which is testament to his commitment to being as good and conscientious a driver as possible on today’s roads.

Just imagine trying to tell him where he was going wrong! As if…

How to enter this competition

For a chance of winning this unique prize, just email your answers to the following three questions to events@iam.org.uk by noon on 1 June.

1. What car did Paddy Hopkirk drive when he won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally?

2. Who was Paddy’s co-driver in the 1964 Monte Carlo rally?

3. What was that car’s registration number?

Paddy Hopkirk MBE is IAM Roadsmart’s Mature Business Ambassador.

Who’s going to drive at Christmas?

We all drink more alcohol than usual at Christmas. After all ’tis the season to be merry, so it’s almost as if it’s expected of us.
But when you’re going out as a family or group of friends, someone has to drive afterwards and she or he who takes on that job has to stay off the booze to keep us all as safe as possible.

Because the facts are that

+ 35,000 drink drive offences were recorded in the first nine months of 2015 – that’s excluding Christmas of course.

+ Having alcohol in your system, even when it’s below the limit, increases your chances of dying in a crash six fold.

+ The total number of drink drive related accidents of all severities totalled 5,620 in 2014. Plus the drivers, passengers, pedestrians, families and friends that are affected by these.

Make a fuss of your volunteer driver

But how many of us think to make a fuss of the one who volunteers to stay completely sober all night? Especially ones who like a tipple as much as the rest of their family and friends.

If your family is like mine, when alcohol or the pub is involved, it’s a given that I’ll drive and be expected to be happy with an occasional J20 whilst they get more ‘cheerful’ than me, topping up with beer.

So let’s raise a glass to our unsung driving heroes, female and male, ie the designated driver on the night.

Maybe someone could come up with a better name than ‘designated driver’ for starters…

Reward her with afternoon tea?

One business that is doing their bit to recognise and celebrate designated drivers is IAM RoadSmart. They’re offering afternoon tea at The Savoy in London as a competition prize. To enter just tweet a picture to the @IAMRoadSmart Twitter page using the hashtag #herooftheroad showing your volunteer driver being celebrated by their family or group of friends.

Former F1 World Champion Nigel Mansell CBE, IAM Roadsmart’s President, equates this support to his career success which he’d never have achieved without the backing of his team.

Similarly, he feels, a group of friends need to work together as a team to make sure the designated driver feels a part of the evening. So there is no temptation for her or him to down a swift pint/glass of wine and then risk the lives of everyone in the vehicle.

So we’d like to echo Nigel’s advice to make sure these (designated driver) heroes of the road are rewarded by either treating them to a meal or their soft drinks during the evening.

As we see it, the least you can do is say thank you after the evening so they feel appreciated. Then maybe those drivers who think that a pint or so doesn’t impair their driving ability might reconsider this, when driving, because you’ve made them realise that this matters to YOU, with safety in mind.

The alternative is to organise a taxi in advance of course.

Let’s make this festive season one to remember for all the right reasons in 2016.

Lessons Louise learned from her car accident


I met Louise Budgen of Utility Warehouse at a recent Athena business meeting in Brighton. We agreed to talk to each other about our respective businesses afterwards and it was during this exchange that Louise told me about a serious car accident she’d been involved in when a friend was driving.

They were merrily travelling in lane two at the side of an overseas lorry when it pulled out just when they were nearly in front of it. The lorry clipped the rear offside of the car, sending it spinning round and round and then rolling over a couple of times before landing upside down in some bushes, just off the hard shoulder. Thankfully not onto the motorway or any barrier or wall but still a totally terrifying experience.

Whilst such instances are thankfully very rare, Louise learned several valuable lessons and we asked her to put these in writing so we could share them with others who might appreciate this advice and support.

This is Louise’s story

“My accident has taught me a lot on a personal front. Life can be taken away from us all in a second. Life is precious and can be very short so we need to enjoy everyday as if it is our last. After all, we don’t know if it is going to be…

My accident left me suffering with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) for the best part of a year. This was a very frustrating time for me as I simply couldn’t do the things I would normally be able to do. I’m talking about simple things like walking the dogs or thinking about more than one thing at a time. I simply couldn’t concentrate, relax or enjoy myself for ages.

I now make sure I take time for me and do not rush around like a headless chicken ALL the time.

To help me, I needed some coaching from different specialists to get me back on track. The enormously positive impact they had on me encouraged me to train to become a coach myself.

On reflection, many good things have come about as a result of this awful accident too.

I am much more appreciative of the small things life offers and grateful for my life as it is; no longer wishing for more. I am definitely living more in the moment which is such a lovely thing to do, enjoying each day by day. Yes I have big plans for my future but today is what matters most for me now.

From a motoring point of view, I faced my biggest fear which was of dying in a motorway accident. I have always been a nervous passenger on motorways yet, having survived this experience, my accident has taught me that there are just some things that will happen for no apparent reason and nobody can control everything in their life including what other vehicles and drivers get up to on the road. So I have at last been able to put this event behind me – why should I worry or waste my energy on being worried? Yes, I’m still a nervous passenger (more than a driver) on the motorway but I’m working on this – I am determined this accident will not hold me back in future.

In life, whilst bad things do happen, it is how we deal with them that matters.

blindspot_graphic_700From a practical point of view – always give foreign lorries a wide berth because, when you are in their blind spot, they sometimes can’t see you in the middle lanes of motorways, even though they SHOULD be sufficiently alert to know where all surrounding vehicles are likely to be.

In our case they misjudged the distance and speed they took to pull out into lane 2.

If you are there at the time they won’t see you and will hit you.”

Please see the blind spot image above which illustrates a similar event but not the one Louise experiened.

Thank you Louise for this insight.

For help re PTSD please contact their website.

We’d recommend any motorist in the same situation consider taking the IAM Roadsmart Confidence After Incident course designed to boost their confidence levels.

We all need a confidence boost and coping mechanisms when we are nervous. Knowing what to do and how means that your driving skills are more intuitive and become automatic.

The more you learn, read and practise the better, more alert and more confident a driver you become.

Coping with foreign lorries is covered within the IAM Roadsmart’s Advanced Driver Course and, having done this programme myself, I can thoroughly recommend it!


The Club provides a range of support services for females in need of encouragement and a confidence boost. If you know a female who is struggling to cope with everyday motoring matters, suggest she join the Club or buy her a subscription as a gift. We are then here for her to contact us for advice, information and support whatever the motoring situation. Not only will we save her time and money but we’ll also provide priceless reassurance during the course of a lifetime membership.

You can join the Club online HERE and NOW

Calling all road smart women drivers


Women drivers come in all shapes and sizes including petrolheads, the mechanically savvy, those that are happy to delegate motoring matters to the man in their lives and those whose car is the workhorse that they couldn’t do without in their busy family lives, and which needs regular professional care and attention to keep it safe.

In all cases, the common denominator is the driver, and we’d suggest that females are generally a lot more honest than men about any concerns about motoring concentration or confidence levels.

To address these areas and more, the newly branded IAM RoadSmart (previously the Institute of Advanced Motorists/IAM) has conducted research suggesting that as many as 40% of mums and grandmothers would like to become more confident when driving to unfamiliar places.

And whilst on-road training continues to be important for occupational drivers it seems that many busy motorists, including women, would prefer online courses because they take less than two hours to complete.

IAM Roadsmart research

IAM Roadsmart research highlights a number of important common-sense findings. Not just that drivers’ biggest concern is actually other drivers but also that reducing the cost of motoring and insurance (as a result of driver training) is a highly powerful motivation for younger motorists.

So these are the key areas that IAM RoadSmart is now addressing for motorists and motorbike riders alike.

IAM RoadSmart CEO, Sarah Sillars OBE said

“The most important thing for the majority of drivers and riders is getting from A to B with as little hassle as possible. The daily commute, travelling to a business meeting, or the drive to the shops, can be made so much more enjoyable with just a bit more awareness of the challenges on the road ahead. This is where IAM RoadSmart comes in.

We’ve been around for 60 years now and in that time roads, vehicles and distractions have changed, in some cases, beyond all recognition. The advanced driving and riding tests will remain core to what we do and will continue to be seen as the ultimate achievement, but if you just want to get more confident driving in bad weather for instance, we can help with that too.

We’ve helped create nearly half a million better drivers and riders already and as we become recognised as IAM RoadSmart we hope to be able to help many more.”

FOXY Steph Savill added her congratulations and appreciation of the philosophy behind the new IAM Roadsmart brand.

“I learned a huge amount taking my IAM advanced driving test. As a result, we promote this programme to FOXY Lady Drivers Club members who receive a discount on their Skill For Life programme. We now look forward to promoting their new online and confidence courses to women.

Whilst it’s not just women who have had road accidents that have shaken their confidence, we do know of many who choose to drive the long way round on A and B roads to avoid motorway travel, regardless of the statistical evidence that more accidents occur on country roads. So anything IAM RoadSmart can do to help women regain their lost confidence and become better drivers into the bargain has our support.”

For More Information:


To find out more about the new IAM Roadsmart website.

Why not join FOXY Lady Drivers Club to enjoy motoring savings, FOXY Lady Approved businesses and support services that complement IAM RoadSmart driver training options.