‘I started selling car parts as a hobby – now I sell to F1 and Prince William teams’

To exclude, to expel:

A company founded in a garage selling racing car parts and accessories now employs four members of the same family and supplies equipment to professionals, royalty and TV stars

McGill Motorsport
The company was founded in a garage, but McGill Motorsport went from strength to strength

A sports car parts business founded to help fund her husband’s racing hobby has grown into a family business that supplies Formula One teams – and even Prince William.

McGill Motorsportbased near Kirkaldy, Scotland, sells all kinds of racing car parts and apparel to racers.

It was founded by Rachel McGill, 61, from her garage in 2005 to help her husband Billy with his hobby of racing and buying auto parts.

Rachel’s three sons now work for the company and they have enjoyed resounding success, supplying the Rally WRC and Formula One teams.

Unusually, they have also provided racing clothing for the royal family – Prince William, who wore the brand’s suit when he participate in electric car racing in May 2021.

“There is no cheap form of motorsport,” explains Rachel. “My husband is in contact sport on the oval track, so cars hit the wall a lot and there’s a lot of things that need to be replaced.”

He worked for an American company at the time, and found replacement parts much cheaper in the states.

The interior of the McGill Motorsport store

Local racers in Scotland took notice and started asking Billy to bring back parts for them – and the idea for McGill Motorsport was born.

Rachel continued: “We had more stock and we decided we needed to sell it. “We started it on eBay, as it has low cost and maximum exposure. We did it and never looked back. “

At that time Rachel had 30 years in the banking industry.

“I was a mortgage consultant at a bank at the time and I was very cautious, but in the end I was so busy that I decided to quit,” she said.

The company was founded by Rachel and her son Ross, who holds a degree in structural engineering.

The company’s eBay sales never slowed down, but as the product catalog grew larger, McGill founded a website of its own and had its own storefront.

“We started out from our double garage,” says Rachel. “But as the product range grew, we moved to larger facilities.”

Later, her two other sons, Ryan and Liam, both in the oil industry, joined the board.

All of Rachel’s sons love motorsport, which she says means they can put themselves in their customers’ shoes in every interaction.

But McGill’s doesn’t just sell racing car parts and kits – they also invent them.

An example is an innovative scale, which is used to weigh cars while adjusting them for maximum speed.

Their innovation was to use Bluetooth wireless connectivity to do this, instead of old-fashioned cables, and the idea was a huge success.

“It was faster and it was a first in the world,” explains Rachel.

Part of the McGill ethos is to sell parts at competitive prices.

“We were selling very cheaply, and at first we found it difficult, because people were suspicious and asked how we could sell things so cheap,” explains Rachel.

“We had that until we became famous. It was in 2008 when we were having financial difficulties. A lot of people gave up the hobby at that time, but motorsport is not what it is. hobby but passion, and people don’t want to give it up.”

Now, McGill Motorsport sells parts to several Formula One and racing teams – although Rachel couldn’t say who.

They also sell products and clothing for a number of TV shows, including racing clothes for a BBC the program is called The Fast and the Farmer-ish, where farmers compete to race tractors.

An upcoming computer game also wants to buy racing car parts from McGill Motorsport, to make their game more realistic.

But the company’s main goal is to support drivers in “every area of ​​motorsport,” Rachel said, from individual drivers to car builders.

The company currently employs 13 people – although Rachel joked that it had to hire non-McGills due to “running out of family”.

The Coronavirus The pandemic has hit many businesses hard, and Rachel says this is true of McGill — but only for a few months.

“Within six weeks to two months, the turnover was gradually decreasing, but then it increased at a knots rate,” she said.

“I think part of it is because these racers have a passion for it. A lot of people need a project during the lockdown. They’re always looking for ways to improve the speed and quality of the car, so they’re still working. spent money on its cars – and of course had more time at home to do that. So parts of the business did a great job.”

Rachel said the future of McGill Motorsport will involve slowing growth, but not at the expense of cutting out their existing customers.

“One thing I want to say about our industry is that it’s a niche business so we can’t rely on customers buying once and leaving, we need to keep them coming back,” she said. We have many loyal returning customers.

“We want to see increased revenue and reasonable margins.” We have grandchildren, and we like to think we’re leaving a legacy.”

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Fry Electronics Team

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