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Inspired by the Olympics? Get karting says RSF
The limelight may not have shone on motorsport over the last two weeks, but as London 2012 fever subsides, the Racing Steps Foundation and Daytona Milton Keynes have highlighted the importance of nurturing the next generation of motor racing talent.
With an unrivalled track record of producing world class racing drivers – Britain having had no fewer than 10 Formula One World Champions – there are also plenty of home-grown idols to inspire youth to get into motorsport.
So if your progeny are seduced by the idea of being the next Jenson or Lewis, where do you start? For ambitious young petrolheads, ‘arrive and drive’ karting facilities like the renowned Daytona Milton Keynes circuit are the place to begin, reckons RSF coordinator Derek Walters:
“There may not have been any motor sport to watch at the Olympics to inspire young people but there’s been a hugely exciting F1 season to follow – that will hopefully inspire another generation of British motor racing stars to check out karting.
“As motor racing goes, it doesn’t get any more competitive and is the only way to get a foot on the ladder. From that perspective circuits like Daytona are a fantastic place to get to grips with the sport and are an obvious first port of call.”
The Racing Steps Foundation was set up to support youngsters from grass-roots motorsport upwards, providing funding to help the most talented drivers rise through the ranks. Also on its books are F1 hopefuls James Calado, currently campaigning in GP2, and Jack Harvey who competes in the British F3 International series.
Karting is where young motorsport ambitions evolve from dream into reality though. Amongst the promising young drivers being mentored by the RSF is 15 year-old multiple national cadet champion and KF3 kart title holder Ben Barnicoat:
“Karting may not be an Olympic sport yet, but the training we put in to ensure we’re competitive on-track is not much different to the regimes followed by the likes of Bradley Wiggins, Jess Ennis and Victoria Pendleton when they were our age.
“The big difference that karting provides is the buzz you get from racing at 80mph with your backside no more than a couple of inches off the ground.”
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