Some are able to make that huge transition, many realize that due to a lot of factors it won’t happen and continue in the kart scene happily for many years. For a lot of people it is easier to keep treading water, until at some point in time they realize they have missed the boat and they are too old, married or settled down for serious Motorsport to be a possibility.
And then there is the group that have the ambition, the talent and possibly the budget to have a go and get it all wrong. Due to bad advice, dodgy race teams and the inability to put together a sustainable long term plan that will see a driver develop a career in Motorsport.
Mark Williamson has been through it all in his own racing career of 33 years starting in karts. He has seen drivers go on to great success as well as talented drivers who fall by they wayside when it could have been possible for them to have long and successful racing careers.
Tracktime Asia partner Mike Reedy has a record as one of Australia and Europe’s foremost driver trainers with vast experience of all of the latest categories in Europe, as well as the New Zealand Toyota racing series.
One of the real difficulties facing young Australian drivers is knowing which step to take and when. There are so many possibilities where it can all go wrong, but you only have to look at the success of Mark Webber and Daniel Ricciardo to know that the dream can become reality.
Therefore the first steps taken from kart racing are absolutely critical. You need to be in the right series driving the right car, with the right advice and training.
If an Aussie driver wishes to become a V8 driver the path is quite straight forward, success in karts, Formula Ford in Australia, V8 development series and then the main game. All it takes is money.
On the other hand if a driver wishes to build a career on an international level, perhaps looking at a path in single seaters, sports cars or even Formula 1 the path is full of multiple directions and many pitfalls. The upside is the chance to build a really interesting career with opportunities in many directions.
For the driver who wants to make the first steps, there is a cost effective way that can lead to the path of becoming a professional driver. This first step involves a step out of most peoples comfort zone and into another country.