WHEN Robert Reid won the 2001 World Rally Championship (WRC), the stratospheric rise to potentially becoming the top global official in motorsport never crossed his mind.

Now 20 years on, and the motorsport hero is days from submitting the official documentation to the Federation de l’Automobile (the world’s governing body for motorsports) for the position of Deputy President for Sport.

If successful, Robert’s life is set to change forever again – and as fate would have it, the papers go in on the very same day that he and his driver, Richard Burns secured their WRC title victory on 25 November 2001.

HeraldScotland: Robert Reid is set to land the new roleRobert Reid is set to land the new role

The 55-year-old retired rally driver who was born and raised in Scotland has spent the last 20 years working in various roles in both UK and Scottish Motorsports including Performance Director of the UK Motor Sport Association and served as an adviser on the Scottish Closed Roads Group which brought rallying back to Scotland.

He is also currently the President of the FiA’s Closed Road Commission.

However, this year Robert and the senior campaign team for Mohammed Ben Sulayem’s presidential bid been working around the clock on their manifesto for the FiA presidential elections.

Speaking about the upcoming election on December 17, Reid said: “This is a huge opportunity to showcase Scotland and the UK’s motorsport heritage. As a young boy, my dream was always to be part of team whose purpose was to work together on a shared passion – and that drive has never left me.

“If you would have asked me in 2001 what my plan was for the next 20 years, my answer would have been to make a positive difference in the sport. And by that, I mean making it accessible so that more young people can experience it. Motorsport brings people together and that’s what makes it special.

HeraldScotland:

“Our manifesto is strong, and our team is focused on making the sport more accessible to youngsters who through circumstance have not have been able to participate. That must change and one of the first things I will be doing is driving forward with our Diversity & Inclusion plan. I believe that diversity and inclusion in motorsport serves to make it stronger and will be putting in place scholarships for developing countries and fast track talent from those regions.

“Through research we know that role models and local heroes are critical and currently no scheme exists to elevate these people to where they should be. This will be my legacy. If elected, I will strip down these barriers because the only barriers this sport needs are the physical ones on the tracks that are there to keep us safe.”