Made for Trade Remain On Track for Fast-Paced Racing Results

12,12,23 | News

by Daniel Hirst

Made for Trade’s Racing Success | Management duo behind North East company’s game-changing Korniche product line conclude 2023 ahead of plans for yet more competition.

Whether it’s an award-winning marketing campaign such as ‘Faster to Fit’ or engineering a new fenestration product that knocks valuable minutes and seconds off a day of fitting for trade installers, the concept of chasing time gains has long become synonymous with success with Made for Trade and its Korniche brand. This is something that was capitalised upon in the most visceral sense in 2023 for Managing Director Bradley Gaunt and Engineering Director Ashley Gaunt, as the pair applied that drive to be one step ahead of the competition by participating in the Hagerty Radical Cup UK for the first time.

Competing in a club-level car circuit racing championship against other drivers – ranging from fellow novices to experienced championship winners – the MfT duo applied their sharp vision and technical backgrounds to the new venture as well as raising awareness of the company in front of huge crowds and on national television. The pair were behind the wheel of Radical SR1 racing cars; like all Made for Trade products these lightweight ‘sports-racing cars’ are proudly manufactured here in the UK and have also gained an enviable reputation for quality and value in their respective marketplace.

The Gaunts’ racing season kicked off at Donington Park in the East Midlands, where the brothers soon realised some of the challenges that would lie ahead during their rookie racing year. Like an off-balance builder struggling to install lesser fenestration products, there were a few accidental trips backwards into gravel traps along the way, but it wasn’t long before the pair started to get to grips with their 185bhp, 490kg racing machines.

Next up, the championship headed to Brands Hatch in Kent, before visits to Snetterton in Norfolk, and Oulton Park in Cheshire – supporting the British Touring Car Championship in front of a mammoth crowd of motorsport enthusiasts. Those BTCC events saw race coverage by ITV, which meant that the Made for Trade and Korniche brands appeared on screens in people’s homes around the country; whether it was from an impressive overtake or a miscalculated mistake – the camera never missed an opportunity.

Whilst the fast-paced world of fenestration innovation was second-nature to the brothers, the opening events were certainly a baptism of fire as they battled at the back of the grid, as well as learnt their way around so many of the UK’s circuit racing venues for the first time in a variety of weather conditions.

Come mid-season, not only did the racing pair go on to compete at the home of British Motorsport on the full Silverstone Grand Prix circuit, but the also made progress up the order both within their novice category but also overall in their class for the bike-engined and sequential gearbox-equipped cars.

The brothers’ Radicals were resplendent in contrasting Made for Trade and Korniche teal and maroon liveries, and they applied their extensive engineering knowledge to refine the set-up of the cars with the team throughout the year. Along the same lines as Made for Trade in its 40th Anniversary year, Radical Motorsport has enjoyed unprecedented growth as it heads into its 25th year, with a total of 14 factory-supported Radical Championships taking place across four different continents.

Having been ably-equipped with the support of bike-engined racecar specialists North Motorsport throughout the season, the Gaunts were also coached along the way by multi-experienced North East-based racer Simon Walker-Hansell, and all the hard work paid off. Come the end of the season and after a return to Donington Park, the Made for Trade office mantelpiece duly featured a selection of new silverware to sit alongside the countless awards for fenestration and Korniche innovation; reflecting some of the pair’s best results gained during their novice year.

Speaking of the experience, Made for Trade Engineering Director Ashley Gaunt, said, “At the beginning of the season, we were literally at the back by laps and several times I think we both felt way out of our depth. Racing with so many top drivers however, has allowed us to level up to the podium in a short space of time and advance enough to be amongst the main action. Plus, getting on the big stage in front of a full touring car crowd is something I will never forget.”

As Made for Trade enters its fifth decade of leading the way in fenestration design and manufacturing, the Gaunt brothers are set to return to their second season of Radical competition, aiming to build on the successes of 2023 and this time lead the way on track alongside. 

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