Is this Britain’s worst driver? Woman spends 14 years and £5000 on 250 driving lessons and still can’t pass her test
Could this be Britain’s worst driver? Ditsy Janine Mars has been BLACKLISTED from her local driving schools – after failing to pass her test after more than 250 lessons.
Janine, 31, has forked out more than £5000 desperately trying to pass her test – but after 14 YEARS of lessons, her driving still isn’t up to scratch.
The construction site manager, from Chatham, Kent, has driven for the equivalent of two weeks’ straight, used five different instructors and failed her practical test FOUR times.
The average learner drives about miles in each hour lesson – meaning Janine has driven tha same distance as from London to Perth, Australia – but still can’t master pulling away from a junction without stalling.
And now she says she can’t find an instructor to take her – because she’s so bad, all her local driving schools have banned her.
Jinxed Janine said: “After a few years I stopped counting how much I’d spent.
“It’s definitely more than £5,000 now, which is crazy.
“I could have bought a brand new car for that!
“I can’t give up now though, I’ve invested too much to stop.”
Janine started driving as soon as she was old enough, but changed instructor after 15 lessons because they didn’t get on.
When she moved to her second teacher, she had more than 100 lessons before realising he wasn’t going to put her forward for a test.
As work got in the way, it wasn’t until 2012 when Janine got back in the driver’s seat.
After switching to a fourth tutor and even sitting double lessons with him, she moved to her fifth instructor last August but still couldn’t pass her test.
Janine said: “Every year since 2001, passing my driving test has been my New Year’s resolution.
“I took a break after my last test in October but I want to do an intensive week course.
“I reckon that’s the only way I can pass now.
“The last time I tried to get an instructor in Kent nobody would take me because they know how bad I am.
“It’s as if I’ve been blacklisted. I don’t blame them though!”
Forget kangaroo jumps and stalling, even after failing four tests, Janine has never had a crash or accident while driving.
Instead she puts down her abject motoring skills down to a complete lack of confidence.
Janine said: “Driving doesn’t come naturally to me.
“I can’t quite master using both legs and hands at different times.
“I’ve had the same problem for the last 14 years.
“I’ve never had a crash or accident.
“Everything will be going really well, calm driving, and then suddenly I fall to pieces.
“It might only be a minor thing, like I miss a junction or turn, and I’ll be thrown completely off course.
“Everyone tells me I’ll get over that – but 250 lessons later and I’m still waiting.”
In an attempt to conquer her nerves, Janine developed a routine to stick to ahead of each and every driving lesson.
She said: “Before I get in the car, I eat a big breakfast and drink a mug of tea.
“Then, without fail, I play Happy by Pharrell to get myself into a more relaxed mindset.
“I’ve experimented with different music, but some of them would get me too pumped up.
“Even with doing that I still have the same issues.”
Currently Janine is an avid user of public transport to get to and from work.
But when she’s out and about socially, a mixture of family and friends act as her chauffeur.
Janine’s exasperated mum Radha, 62, said: “I can’t wait for her to pass.
“She’s a real diva in the car.
“Despite the fact she hasn’t passed her test she’s the world’s best backseat driver.
“She’s always saying ‘Mum, don’t do that’ or ‘go here’.
“I’m so desperate to stop carting her round, I’ve promised I’ll go halves on a new car once she passes!”
However, as she gets older, Janine wants to finally conquer her driving demons to regain her independence.
She said: “Maybe I’m just one of those people born to be driven.
“I’m fed up of planning my life around train and bus timetables too.
“It takes almost twice as long as driving.
“My mum has promised to go halves on a new car once I pass so that’s even more of an incentive.”