You don't have to look far to find a Caterham fan at PH Towers. Matt's still going on about his experience in the Academy series six years later, and Ben went as far as building his own 270R in 2015. Those enthused by the notion of following in their footsteps ought to find a calculator and brush up on their Man Maths now, then, because Caterham has just announced a new way to make ownership of one of its machines even more enticing still.
In partnership with Santander, the manufacturer is introducing new finance offers on not only its whole range of new and used Seven road cars but, crucially, its racing cars too. The plans can even cover a season of competition in the entry-level Caterham Academy, with Santander returning as a sponsor of the entire Caterham Motorsport Championships, which remains the largest factory-backed racing series in the UK.
For those of you unfamiliar with what makes this such exciting news, an Academy season includes entrant's ARDS tests, training seminars on vehicle set-up, test and handling days alongside Caterham's Motorsport staff and six championship races at tracks like Silverstone, Brands Hatch and Knockhill. It's a fantastic entry point not just into Caterham ownership, but the world of racing in general - if Matt's ravings are anything to go by, at least.
At the end of the finance term and following a final balloon payment, racers are able to keep their - fully road legal - Seven racer and, if they want to, upgrade it to the level required to compete in the next rung on the Caterham Motorsport ladder, the Roadsport championship.
Commenting on the new finance arrangement, Caterham CEO Graham Macdonald said: "Cost has always been the biggest hurdle for any racing driver, especially those looking to get started in the sport. By splitting the cost of racing a full season in the Caterham Academy across several monthly payments, we are making racing more affordable and open.
"Given the majority of cars today are bought on finance, it was a logical next step for us to include finance offers for our road and race cars. By dividing the cost of ownership across low monthly payments, we are aiming to attract a new, wider customer base of driving enthusiasts and aspiring race car drivers."
Those interested in more information, including examples of the finance packages on offer, can get it here. Looks like another afternoon on the Caterham configurator awaits...