Children as young as 10 are invited to get behind the wheel of a Skoda to enter a Young Driver Challenge.
The challenge is run by Young Driver, the UK’s largest provider of pre-17 driving lessons, and opens to entries on 30th April 2016.
The scheme has recently started offering lessons to 10-year-olds, and so this year those who have just hit double figures will, for the first time, be able to take part.
The competition, which is in its third year, aims to find the best young drivers in the country – but they must be aged between 10 and their 17th birthday.
Youngsters can enter at one of Young Driver’s 43 sites, including at the MK Academy in Milton Keynes, from now until the end of July.
The Challenge aims to encourage youngsters to consider responsible and safe driving, with top marks given to those who show the best levels of control and awareness.
Entrants drive a real, dual-control Skoda car, with an instructor, and are marked on driving skills and manoeuvres, including parallel parking, figures of eight, turn in the road, steering, judgement and positioning. A second, knowledge-based part of the test is taken via the Goodyear Driving Academy, an online driving simulator which tests a youngsters’ ability to cope with everyday driving distractions as well as quizzing them on road safety and the Highway Code.
The top 40 drivers will then be invited to a grand final, where prizes include Young Driver lessons, ‘on the road’ post-17 driving lessons courtesy of Goodyear, remote control cars provided by SKODA, and £500 off a car insurance premium courtesy of Young Driver sponsor Admiral.
Kim Stanton, who heads up Young Driver, said: “People would be amazed at the level of skill these young drivers show. The aim of Young Driver has always been to create a safer next generation of youngsters on the roads.
“At the moment one in five have an accident within six months of passing their test and 400 people are killed each year in the UK in accidents involving young drivers. The current, traditional way of educating youngsters is clearly not working.
“We strongly believe that by educating young people from a younger age, and over a longer period of time, you create much safer drivers – and the research figures back us up, proving it halves their risk of having an accident.”
Motoring expert and presenter Quentin Willson said: “My 11-year-old daughter took part in last year’s challenge and I’m proud to say she’s doing it again this year. The Young Driver Challenge helps kids learn that driving should be a craft not a chore.”
For more information about the challenge, or to book a Young Driver lesson, please log on to www.youngdriver.eu or call 0844 371 9010.