Doncaster karting ace Katie is racing ahead

Katie Evans, 15, of Wheatley Hills, is leading the way in her karting class. Picture: Andrew Roe
Katie Evans, 15, of Wheatley Hills, is leading the way in her karting class. Picture: Andrew Roe

A teenage motoring ace is streets ahead of the rest in her bid to become Britain’s youngest ever female Formula One star.

For that’s the amazing ambition karting star Katie Evans is revving herself up towards after zooming to glory on the track.

Kirk Sandall-based Katie, 15, has already picked up a clutch of trophies, beating off the challenge of scores of boys in a typically male dominated sport.

She said: “My ultimate ambition is to get into Formula One. That’s a very long way off at the moment but its something I want to aim towards.”

Hungerhill School student Katie was introduced to the fast and furious world of karting as a ten-year-old by her dad Mark.

“He asked me one day if I’d like a go and that was that. I was really keen to get started.”

Katie, from Longton Road, races and practices every weekend at Tattershall Karting Centre in Lincolnshire - driving her own £15,000 kart at hair-raising speeds of up to 80mph.

She said: “All my friends think its fantastic. I’ve done really well to get where I am because I’ve had to juggle my sport with school work. I am also competing mostly against boys and it is a very expensive hobby but I love it because it really gets the adrenalin going.”

But following the road to glory is not without its pitfalls - and Katie suffered injuries after catapulting through the air in her kart in a high speed crash.

She said: “I was racing in second place and jostling for the lead when the lad in front of me lost control and spun in front of me.

“I swerved to try and avoid him but ended up flying over the top of his him and ended up cracking my ribs.

“It can be dangerous but if it happens, it happens. That’s the risk you take.”

Last year, at Woodthorpe Kart Club, Katie took on 21 boys and finished third overall in the championship and was also awarded titles for most improved driver and the junior driver award.

Added Katie: “I really hope I can go all the way to the top. To become a Formula One driver you are looking at twenty years or so from now so there is a very long way to go but that’s the plan.”

Only five women racing drivers have taken part in Formula One since the inception of the World Championship in 1950, although only two ever qualified and started a race.

First behind the wheel was Italian Maria Teresa de Filippis, who raced between 1958–1959. Fellow Italian Lella Lombardi, who enjoyed 17 Grand Prix entries and 12 starts, is considered the most successful F1 female driver, racing in the 1970s, while Britain chipped in with Davina Galica.

South African Desire Wilson became the only woman to win an F1 race of any kind when she won at Brands Hatch in the British Aurora F1 series in 1980.

The only other was Italian Giovanna Amati, who competed in the early 90s.