A 12-year-old aspiring racing driver from Nottingham has had his first taste of life behind the wheel of a car thanks to a new motorsport initiative.
Jacob Jukes, who is currently in year 7 at Toothill School in Bingham, is a driver for Team X-Kart, which was formed last year and has been stunning the competition on the track this year.
Jacob is a major racing fan, having started karting at the age of 8. Now described as ‘living and breathing racing’, he hopes to pursue a professional career and has been helped along his way with his first ever track session in a car at the age of just 12.
Through the TeamKarting / X-Kart ‘Karting to Cars’ initiative, set up by Team X-Kart Founder Matty Street, Jacob got behind the wheel of a BMW 116i on the 13th July at Teeside Karting. The project offers grassroots, entry level racing and coaching for drivers looking to move from karts to cars, and despite Jacob being two years away from being able to apply for a race licence, this gave him the chance to try out on track for the first time.
Jacob joined fellow X-Kart racer, 14-year-old Sandro Ballesteros from Rochdale and despite the wet weather, the two had an unbelievable experience, racing around a track in a full spec racing car.
The day came just two days after Jacob secured yet another title in a recent kart race. On Sunday 11th July, in his fourth ever Motorsport UK-Sanctioned race held at Whilton Mill, Jacob was named ‘top novice’ after climbing from P28 to P9 in the final. He is now leading the championship’s novice category.
Jacob said “It was so much fun to driving a car rather than a kart for the first time – something I’ve wanted to do for ages. It was a brilliant experience and I’m really grateful to Matty for making it possible for me and Sandro – I can’t wait to do it again.
“I’ve had some great successes on the track so far this year and I’m pleased to have made top novice at Whilton Mill. I had a major engine issue after heat two so thank my team for helping me get to the final.”