Fabian Coulthard has attributed his father’s passion of racing for his long career in motorsport.
Coulthard, a 13-time race winner in the Supercars Championship, has been a main game regular since 2008.
The British-born, New Zealand-raised Coulthard is the fifth-most successful Kiwi in ATCC/Supercars history with regards to race wins.
The early years of Coulthard’s career unfolded with an eye on Formula One, with Coulthard taking up go-karting at a young age.
Coulthard won 13 races between 2013 and 2020
Speaking to Chad Neylon in the new Life before Supercars series, Coulthard was pleased he could live father Riki’s motorsport dream through his own career.
“I was a six-year-old kid wanting a go-kart for my birthday,” Coulthard said of his racing origins.
“I was never pressured by my family; it was always something my father wanted to do, but he could never afford it.
“He kind of gets to live the dream through me, which is pretty cool.
Coulthard on track in 2003
“But to have some success… it started off as a hobby, and it progressed into a profession.”
Coulthard moved into Formula Ford in New Zealand, and a successful outing at the Australian Grand Prix saw an international career take form.
The now Team Sydney driver was a Manor Motorsport teammate to Lewis Hamilton in Formula Renault in 2003, and Hamilton duly won the title.
The two drivers reconnected at the 2017 Australian Grand Prix, with Coulthard then a Shell V-Power Racing Team championship contender.
Coulthard and Hamilton reconnect in 2017
Eight months later, Hamilton would win his fourth Formula One title, and has since added three more.
Coulthard moved back to Australia and was a standout rookie in the 2004 Porsche Carrera Cup season. A year later, he won the title.
The same year, Coulthard made his Supercars debut at Oran Park, four years before Paul Cruickshank handed him his first full-time drive.
Coulthard’s Formula One aspirations were also motivated in part by his distant relation to David Coulthard, who won races for Williams and McLaren.
The Coulthards meet at Albert Park
“For me, I always wanted to get to Formula One,” the father-of-two said.
“That was just something from watching Formula One on TV as a kid.
“But as I grew older, and David became apparent to me, he was successful in Formula One.”
They would meet only once in the Albert Park paddock, but it was a meeting Fabian took great joy in - even if Mercedes and Ford made it difficult.
'It started off as a hobby, and it progressed into a profession'
“I’ve only met him the once, and that was at the Australian Grand Prix,” the 449-Supercars race veteran said of David.
“It was tough to get that meet-up to happen… at the time, David was driving for McLaren.
“Mercedes got wind that I wanted to get in contact with David, meet him and say g’day.
“It was quite tough, but we got a photo and hung out with Dave a little bit.
“He gave me his phone number and said if I ever needed to call him or wanted some advice, then to pick up the phone and call him."