Born for speed, he is Ireland’s top professional racing driver but if it had worked out differently Matt Griffin (34), from Ballincollig, would love to have been a professional cyclist …
What’s the one thing you can’t live without? Probably my Bose headphones. I do an incredible amount of travelling, usually over 200 flights per year. My headphones and music really help me relax while in airports and aeroplanes, etc.
What would I find in your fridge right now? Not too much as I have been in France racing and only home for a day before heading to Mexico. You will always find some Franciscan Well Rebel Red beer though!
Name one element your sport could/should take from another? Because of the commercial nature of motorsport you often have to be very careful how you conduct yourself and what you say, especially if you are angry or upset. Any professional sport pushes the limits both mentally and physically. I like in boxing/UFC that the fighters are allowed to be themselves and say what they think. In motorsport you need to be very controlled even in the heat of the moment and while composure is very important in sport and life, sometimes it’s nice be human.
What do you think about when you’re alone in your car? When I am in my road car I usually try to relax so will often use the time to catch up with friends on the (hands-free) phone or listen to music. I don’t often think about racing, as the brain needs a rest from it sometimes.
Who has been the biggest influence on your sporting career (and why)? I didn’t really have a big influence from anyone in particular. Obviously I have huge respect for guys I watched growing up like Senna, Schumacher, etc., but they didn’t really influence me. From a very young age I loved cars, speed and pushing myself so my hunger grew from there. I also had and have a lot of support from my family especially my father.
Pick two celebrities to be your parents: Steve McQueen and Marilyn Monroe because of the cool factor.
What do you think cats dream of? Mice.
If you could play any other sport for one day what would it be? I love cycling and am a member of the Ballincollig Crusaders Cycling Club so definitely a professional cyclist. I like how as athletes they push themselves to insane levels.
If you joined a circus, what would you perform? The ringmaster as I like to be at the top of the pile.
If you could get rid of one county in Ireland what would it be and why? Dublin – because Cork is the real capital!
What would you do if you found a penguin in your freezer? Offer him a cold beer.
Before we let you go, teach us something that we don’t know: Honey doesn’t go off… you could actually eat honey 2,000 years old.