A YOUNG karter has turned his skills playing Mario Kart on Nintendo Wii to real life and has just completed a sensational hat-trick of Novice Cup wins.
Joe Turney has only been racing for 15 months but the 10-year-old has already made fantastic progress in junior karting and has even been tipped for greatness by former Formula 1 driver Anthony Davidson.
The Fulbrook Middle School pupil first took to the track at Daytona Milton Keynes for a treat on his ninth birthday, but after impressing on the city circuit he has now gone on to earn his novice racing license and enjoyed success in his first three competitive outings.
Mum Siobhan said: “We didn’t realise that a one-off trip to try karting would turn into this, but people kept on telling us how good Joe was and it’s really just snowballed since and been an incredible year.
“He completed the Race School programme held at Daytona and started racing in the local championship. He won a few races and then we got the biggest surprise of all when Anthony Davidson came over and started telling us that he’d been watching Joe and was very impressed.
“Since then he’s got on to club carting and taken his ARKS test. Doing that he met the team principal of a local team and was invited to race for them. And things couldn’t have gone better because he has now won the Novice Cup in his first three major races.”
Joe now drives for Protrain Racing who help to subsidise the cost of his driving, likely to be in the region of £20,000 per year as he continues to progress through the ranks.
Siobhan says the family is willing to find the money to help Joe fulfil his potential, but is also hopeful that his talents will be spotted by Joe’s local F1 team on his doorstep.
She said: “The dream would be for him to get on Red Bull’s young stars programme but we know it will be really tough.
“They take on kids from all over the world but it would be great to see a youngster from Milton Keynes given an opportunity.
“Karting is now a huge part of our lives – Joe’s two older sisters and young brother are all involved and love it.
“It’s amazing to think this all started from Joe playing his computer games and wanting to try it for real.”