Driver & cO-dRIVER: ben backhouse
Ben was born on the island of Jersey however at a young age he moved to Guernsey and has been there ever since. Living on an island it is no surprise that from a young age Ben was discovering the seas in anything with a sail. Optimists, toppers, gp14s, wind surfers and any other dinghy someone would lend him, very occasionally Ben would sail larger yachts with his family. Finally after almost his whole childhood Ben discovered boats with engines. Since that point he has enjoyed spending the weekends with Tom, Jack, Paddy and his other mates ‘speeding’ across to the neighbouring islands. Unfortunately Ben’s first boat (aka, the block of flats) was not the fastest vessel to grace Guernsey’s waters, however it did give Ben and Tom a lot of mainly good experiences. Now they have found ThunderCats, the speed and thrills they were looking for. There was some hope that Ben and Tom would no longer need to be performing boat repairs every weekend, however this has hardly changed, now they just spend their time working on Whiskers. Ben also has an interest in technology which is why 'Whiskers' is usually covered in GoPro's, Garmin cameras/speed recorders, intercom between team mates and anything else that is waterproof and holds a battery.
Ben bought Whiskers in 2014 with team mate Tom after watching friends Paddy and Jack (Team Catnip 99) whizz past his boat in the summer months. Now all four of them take to the seas most weekends.
Ben and Tom spent hours and hours tinkering with Whiskers now known as ThunderCat Guernsey to ensure that the boat was race ready. For the 2016 season the team have invested in an Aquarius hull and are looking forward to being able to compete at all the events.
Tom's day job is an accountant.
DRIVER & Co-driver : tom zierer
Tom was born in the UK and moved to Guernsey when he was eight years old. His first experience of boating was when he was six whilst on a camping holiday in France, his parents decided to hire a boat and teach him how to sail on nearby lake. All was going well until the boat started sinking in the middle of the lake and rescue mission later from the hire shop left him slightly scared of being out on the water. After moving to Guernsey he decided to give it another go through the school’s CCF and instantly fell in love. After many trips out to the neighbouring island, Herm, on friend’s boats the natural progression was for him to own his own boat. Fuelled by his adrenalin junkie tendencies he jumped at the chance to own a ThunderCat. Tom is very technically minded and thrives at the chance to tinker with the engine in the hopes of getting every last bit of power out of her. Tom is a Trust & Company Administrator.
Team Manager: ben backhouse
Ben is also Team Manager for Cams Hire.
Quick Fire Questions
Worst wipeout; They have been lucky enough to stay in the boat up until now, they wait with excitment and a small amount of fear fopr their first flip!
Best Venue; Wait and see in the 2015 season but at home it is The Mermaid at Herm Island
Preferred prop; Polecat 14
New to racing in the 2015 season, team ThunderCat Guernsey saw plenty of air under their boat! At the 1st event in Boscombe the guys experienced their first flip but it did not put them off and they continued to battle through challenging conditions. They returned for their 2nd Circuit event at Swansea and also the longhaul at Christchurch. After 3 events, they achieved 21st in the team standings.
Ben is actively looking for support from sponsors, so please contact Ben on the email above if you could offer any type of assist to enable this team to enjoy a full racing season.
2010 - present
2010 - present