Kart stars rewarded

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MARUSSIA Virgin Racing are to reward some young stars of the future with a test drive in Barcelona this month.

The karters who finished in the top three in this season’s Formula KGP Championship, along with the best rookie, will be given a test with the Manor Formula Renault 2.0 team on 19th December.

After a hard-fought Formula KGP season, Michael Simpson from Hull was crowned champion, followed by his team mate Tom Fawcett from Pontefract and with Mark Litchfield from Grantham in third position.

The best of the rookies, Jake Hughes from Birmingham, earned himself the test with a creditable fifth overall.

John Booth, team principal at Virgin Racing, who has helped many of the top Formula One drivers reach the pinnacle of the sport, said: “Karting is where it all began for most of today’s top Formula One drivers and it is a category we want to support.”

“In my career I have seen Kimi Raikkonen, Lewis Hamilton and Paul di Resta – to name but a few – take the step up from karting to Single Seater Racing with the Manor Formula Renault Team, so it is exciting to incorporate this opportunity into our wider development programme.”

Tony Shaw, Manor Formula Renault 2.0 manager added: “I want to congratulate our four young karters on a fantastic season in KGP.”

“This is a great opportunity at an early age and I’m sure they will recognise this and make the most of it.”