A TARPORLEY man who manages the Isle of Man TT pit lane has raced ahead with his own car wash business despite suffering a serious heart attack less than two years ago.
Roger Barnes, 64, is calling on other people, who are recovering from similar health problems, to try and get out there and enjoy life again.
Roger, who has lived in Tarporley all his life, is heading off to the Isle of Man today for the world-famous TT race taking place this weekend.
He said: “It’s fantastic I love it. I have been going to the TT race for the past 50 years. I went as a spectator as a youngster, and then started marshalling and then operating the scoreboards during the 60s.
“I now manage the pit lane. I open it up an hour before the race starts. I try and keep everyone calm, because everyone there is on a bit of a high. I generally make sure the pit lane and those in it are safe.
“I have been doing it so long now I know all the guys and it is great.”
Two years ago things were not so good for the father of three. He suffered a massive heart attack and was rushed to the Countess of Chester Hospital.
He had to undergo a quadruple by-pass and spent nearly three weeks in hospital.
He said he felt very low when he came out of hospital.
“I was depressed. I was scared that it could happen again. I was surrounded by pills and had no energy and was just out of breath all the time,” he said.
But then things began to change as Roger got stronger.
“I started going for walks. At the beginning I could only walk very short distances and eventually I got to do more.”
A turning point came when a local taxi firm came to see him about doing some work.
He said: “From then things started to look better and I got my drive back and I concentrated on getting myself fully fit.”
“I had thought about setting up my car wash while I was recovering and spoke to the Rose Farm shop about setting it up there. I was thrilled when they said yes.”
Roger set up his car wash business called Shop and Wash in September last year.
He said: “The business has come through one of the toughest winters, and I am feeling better than ever. I am the healthiest and lightest I have been in a long time.
“I just want to say to other people who are going through what I have don’t give up. You can get back to work and feel better again.”
Shop and Wash, at the Rose Farm Shop in Utkinton, will reopen on June 15. It is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 8.30am.