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Head has winning formula

PUBLISHED: 09:06 15 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:12 03 March 2010

RUNNING a Formula One racing team is "a doddle" compared to running a primary school, according to a former motor racing boss.

But Ken Marrable is proving the driving force behind Somersham Primary School's acceleration from the bottom 5 per cent of all UK primary schools to the top 10%.

RUNNING a Formula One racing team is "a doddle" compared to running a primary school, according to a former motor racing boss.

But Ken Marrable is proving the driving force behind Somersham Primary School's acceleration from the bottom fiveper cent of all UK primary schools to the top 10pc.

Ofsted inspectors, who labelled the school as "failing" two years ago, have noted rapid improvements in their latest report.

They now say the school is "good", with excellent teaching and a caring environment.

But headteacher Mr Marrable has no plans to wave the chequered flag just yet.

He said: "Now we want to make this an excellent school, and perhaps go for beacon status. We've made some fantastic improvements, but there's still room for more."

The 53-year is a former owner of the Leyton House March racing team, working with drivers such as Karl Wendlinger and Ivan Capelli.

He got involved with Formula One after working as an export director in the Far East, where he acted as an advisor to Japanese businessmen hoping to buy into a motor racing team.

They took control of the Leyton House team, which was owned by Robin Herd, and Mr Marrable was given the role of marketing director.

In 1991, when the team ran into financial difficulties, he bought the company for £1 and kept it going until it eventually folded in 1993.

Mr Marrable said running the team had been "fantastic fun" but admitted it amounted to "big toys for big boys" and that running a school gave him greater job satisfaction.

He said: "I know people won't believe this, but it's more stressful and much harder work running a school. I have never worked so hard in my life.

"Running a Formula One team is a doddle compared to running a school. But making a difference to children's education is what really counts."

Mr Marrable took over as headteacher at Somersham in 2000, and has overseen great changes, including a new IT suite being installed.

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