Why a professional racing driver is learning French

head_shoulders_Chris_DymondWe love to get to know our language learners a little better. Today we are talking to one of our French learners. Meet Chris Dymond! Chris is a 25-year-old professional racing driver from Buckingham, England.

Why did you decide to pick up French?

“My job brings me often to France. Our championships are often organized by a French management team. If they do not speak English, all speak French among them. With French skills I can be competitive also off the track, speaking to the organizers in French. It is important for me to be able to communicate with my French team as well.”

When did you decide it was time to start learning French?

“I had the idea floating around in my head for a while. Although I had French at school, it was never enough to get by. A couple of months ago, I decided that it was time to start learning it properly. And for now I can say it works. (Chris learns French with Rosetta Stone.) I’ve found myself several times now seeing certain objects, mostly plates and tea cups bizarrely, and thinking the French word for them, sometimes before the English!”

Why does Rosetta Stone work for you?

“It is a very intuitive way to learn. You see pictures and hear the sentence that goes with it—you connect images with words over and over again. At a certain point you recognise how it is reprinted in your brain. The words just stick in your head. This method clicks with how I work.”

Which feature do you like best and why?

“My work sees me travel, a lot. With the TOTALe phone app and MP3 files, I can continue learning whilst on the move, waiting for a plane or even in the pit garage. The flexibility is fantastic!”

How often to you learn with Rosetta Stone?

“I use the program at least three times a week for 45 min.”

 Would you recommend Rosetta Stone? Why?

“I recommend this program, because it simply works. You speak from the start in the new language. It is all varied: It’s not only about repeating, but sometimes you read, then you write, listen or speak. The mixture of these activities brings it all together.”

A funny story:
“I guess it was one of my first races in the French GT championship. Before every race we have a drivers’ briefing where all the aspects of the weekend are explained—start procedure, safety things, etc. It’s very important, and you get fined if you miss it! Naturally the briefing was held entirely in French; I didn’t have a clue what was being said. It was at that point I decided I have to learn French!

During the briefing I did have my teammates translate some parts, but for a bit of a laugh, as everyone knew I was the only Englishman in the room, at the end of the briefing when I was told “was there any question!?” I raised my hand and just said ” What!?” The race director wasn’t best pleased but everyone else burst out laughing.

Success in French since then has been great. I’ve seen my old French team several times this year at various races, and each time I can talk more with them in French rather than having to default to English, and they’ve even commented on how my French is progressing.”

Do you want to learn a new language, too?

Choose from over 2o languages at the Rosetta Stone website.

Miriam Melchers

Miriam is Social Media Manager EMEA at Rosetta Stone. She said ‘Dag Amsterdam. Hello London!’ and moved to the most multicultural city in the world. She speaks Dutch, English, un petit peu Français and thinks German is ‘ganz toll’! That’s why she’s improving her German with Rosetta Stone. She loves languages, but she loves engaging with our learners and fans even more. Follow her on Twitter.

TIP: if you want to learn a language too, try a free Rosetta Stone demo.

1 Comment

  1. Ellis - July 11, 2013

    I want a bike! Keep up the good work.

Leave a reply