At 28-years-old, Andy Meyrick is no stranger to life in the fast lane and the glare of the media spotlight.
But now the racing car driver, who lives in Delamere, will be watched by packed audiences across the world as he makes his movie debut in this year’s high-speed blockbuster Rush .
The former King’s School student spent months rubbing shoulders with directors, producers and big screen stars, as he raced around some of the world’s most famous race courses to recreate the scenes for the Formula One film.
Andy, who missed the official world premiere of the multi-million pound blockbuster held in London last week, said that he felt excited as he watched the film for the first time at a special cast and crew showing earlier this year.
“In reality it probably took about 50 hours of footage to film the bit that everyone else sees in the cinema, there’s a lot missing from everything we did,” said Andy, who spent four months travelling around the world with the crew last year, advising them on the driving scenes.
“It was a very exciting time. One thing about most movies that surround sport is that they don’t show the reality of what it was like in real life. To modern-day F1 fans it is very graphic, but you have to bear in mind we lost a lot of drivers back then.”
Andy, who races as up to 15 different drivers in the film, including Niki Lauda’s rival James Hunt, advised the movie-makers on how to recreate the infamous scenes, dining with the film’s director Ron Howard, who also directed Apollo 13 , to teach him about the sport.
The film, a dramatic retelling of the 1976 title battle between Britain’s James Hunt and Austria’s Niki Lauda, showcases a playboy lifestyle filled with parties, champagne and girls. But also highlights the dangers of being a racing driver at that time, where up to three drivers were being killed every event.
“We are very lucky that the safety is a lot better than it was,” said Andy, who said that he doesn’t think about how dangerous it is before he gets in the car.
“Nevertheless it’s still a dangerous sport.
“A colleague of mine died recently and that was a wake-up call. But at the end of the day I choose to do this. No-one is forcing me to get in the car, I do it because I love it.”
Andy, who will be jetting off to Austin, Texas this month to compete in the eighth round of the American Le Mans Series at the Circuit of the Americas, said he hoped to work on more movies in the future.
“I just sort of fell into this and I would be very lucky if this came around again for me again,” said Andy, who was approached for the film after driving vintage F1 cars previously with his dad Peter.
“But I have a friend who is involved with the James Bond films, I would love to do something like that in the future.”