Dean Johnson, 50 from Northiam East Sussex, is a disabled life-long Formula One fan that has professionally ‘pimped up’ his TGA mobility scooter with official Ferrari Testarossa paintwork and wheels.
Dean is a positive, lively individual who lives with considerable mobility difficulties resulting from heart disease and type-1 diabetes. Before experiencing a heart attack in 2008, Dean was a highly successful Contracts Manager who was responsible for over 90 staff operating a network of serviced offices across London. He would begin his commute from home each day at 4:30am and was a driven professional that was head hunted for his final job. Due to illness, Dean had to take early retirement from his career and as his condition developed, his ability to walk became severely restricted. Independence outdoors was becoming impossible until he was fortunate enough to inherit his late Father-in-Law’s, top-of-the-range mobility scooter – a TGA Breeze. Built by TGA, who have a motorsport and engineering heritage, this robust 8mph mobility scooter appealed to Dean’s F1 interests and resulted in its conversion to a Ferrari red finish.
Dean explained: “When sadly my Father-in-Law Percy Judd passed away, the family kindly said to me I could start using his Breeze scooter. They’d seen me struggling to get around and getting so frustrated whereas driving around on the scooter would give me my independence back. Percy had always only selected the best in products and his top spec TGA scooter was no exception – it was fitted with long range batteries and had great power and performance. Now I’m in the driving seat, I can really appreciate the build quality and smooth ride. As time has gone on though, I wanted to make it unique somehow. As I am a huge fan of Formula One, I decided to spray it Ferrari red so it would appeal to my motorsport interests. I managed to find a company who could supply official Ferrari Testarossa paint and undercoat lacquer that would adhere to the body shell. I began work by meticulously dismantling the complete scooter so I could complete a professional paint job on its entire chassis, including the addition of eye catching black gloss to the alloys. I had completed a motor mechanics course many years ago so was able to tackle this complex job relatively easily, the paintwork was more challenging though.”
Dean continued: “Following many hours of detailed masking and re-spraying, I am chuffed to bits with the end result. Everywhere I go, whether it’s to the newsagents or when driving through the local Northiam Recreational Park, passers by comment on my scooter. ‘Great paint work!’…. ‘Wow, where did you get this from, I want one!’ are common statements – people have never seen such a striking scooter before. My Ferrari Breeze has made such a massive difference to my life, I’d be lost without it as walking is pretty much impossible for me now. I even have extra bits of kit if I ever need to visit the pits, from spare wheels to puncture sealant, so my freedom is assured.”