KARTING: Career-best effort for Louis Harvey, 9, in Welsh Championships

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Louis Harvey with his Welsh Championship trophy Louis Harvey with his Welsh Championship trophy

LOUIS HARVEY had the best result of his karting career so far when he finished fifth in the Welsh Championships at the Llandow circuit over the weekend.

Harvey, a nine-year-old from Malmesbury, improved throughout the two days of competition, coming through various qualifying stages in 11th, ninth and then seventh before saving his best for the final.

Louis also competes in two season-long championships at Rissington and Llandow and, as was the case in the Welsh Championships, he regular gives several years to his rivals.

His dad Chris said: "Louis got a real buzz from finishing fifth in such a substantial national event. It was definitely the best race of his career and he was on cloud nine when he got his trophy.

"He is currently lying third in the Rissington Championship, behind two lads who are much older, but their lap times are only 2/100ths of a second apart.

"With the boost he has got from his latest race, there is nothing stopping him from going back and winning that championship.

"He is also competing in the Llandow Championships in which he holds seventh place."

Louis took his first drive in a go kart the day after his fifth birthday as a treat while on holiday in Cornwall.

Closer to home, he started practising in a Bambino kart at M4 Karting in Hullavington in 2010 and soon became one of the quickest around their track.

The following year he raced his own Cadet kart and in 2012 he joined forces with Shark Motorsport.

In September of that year he picked up a first place novice trophy at the Clay Pigeon circuit in his new Shark Motorsport Kart sponsored by Seven Electrical Systems Ltd.

During 2013 Louis gained backing from his main sponsor, Swindon company Ideal Displays which enabled his family to purchase an RPM racing engine, new body kit and a race suit.

This all led to Louis gaining his first national licence win in the September B final at Rissington.

He is now also a sponsored driver for Power Maxed Racing. 

"It's an expensive sport," said Chris. "We run on a tight budget but some parents are throwing £80,000 a year at their kids' karting.

"Louis can race for four more years at this level but he does want to step up to Super 1, which is a Grand Prix-style competition taking place at different tracks around the country.

"And, like all boys who kart, he dreams of Formula 1.

"Our Sky Plus box at home is always full of motor racing and Louis thinks nothing of getting up at 3am to watch F1 qualifying."

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