My dad always used to say to me when I was growing up: “Son, if you want to be a success at anything, then find somebody who is, and mirror what they did.” So, if you are looking for the best way to start a career in racing you need to find yourself a role model.
In Formula One there are many, including Stirling Moss and James Hunt. Somebody that is at the height of his success today is Lewis Hamilton, and a pretty good place to see how you can get into racing, is to examine how he did it.
Lewis Carl Davidson Hamilton doesn’t come from a wealthy family, so that is the first myth we need to discard. To start a career in racing, you don’t need to have a shed-load of cash. Hamilton started his racing career on the Karting circuit aged eight years old in 1993. He showed a natural talent and soon began winning races. Karting is a great way to start to race, and these small but powerful machines can reach speeds of over 160mph. Don’t confuse the amusement park go-kart with the real thing, because this type of racing is every bit as competitive as F1 though obviously the rewards are not as high. For Hamilton, the rest is history as he progressed through Formula Three and Two until he eventually reached the pinnacle.
Starting off in Karting
If you have the nerve and the ‘need for speed’ then Karting is a sport that if you are good enough, will set you on the path to success. Just how far you get depends on how good you are. If you need the practice, then on this circuit, you can race competitively every week. Karting is the F1 racing circuit in miniature, and the fundamental principles are the same. The aim is to take the chequered flag in first place. There are four main categories in the UK for this sport, and these are Gearbox, Senior, Junior and Cadet. The majority of carting events have practice sessions; heats were you need to get around the circuit in a certain time to qualify, and a final.
How do I get started?
If you think that you are another Lewis Hamilton, then you can get all of the information that you need to start off at the Association of British Kart Clubs.