13-Year-Old Go Kart Champion Aims to Become Ferrari Racer

Category: Sports


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. renowned / rɪˈnaʊnd / (adj) – famous

    A renowned writer will facilitate the scriptwriting workshop.

  2. under (one’s) belt / ˈʌn dər bɛlt / (idiom) – earned, experienced, or achieved

    She is a good candidate because she has a lot of training and experience under her belt.

  3. innate / ɪˈneɪt / (adj) – existing from the moment a person is born

    Many musicians have the innate ability to sense good rhythm.

  4. try out / traɪ aʊt / (phrasal) – to try to be chosen as a part of a team, for a role in a play, etc.

    I’m really interested in martial arts, so I tried out for the karate club.

  5. prestigious / prɛˈstɪdʒ əs / (adj) – having a good image or reputation

    My dream is to go to a prestigious university like Harvard.


Read the text below.

Ella Stevens, a 13-year-old British racer, is striving to be part of the renowned Ferrari racing team.

Stevens started competing in kart racing at six years old. Despite her young age, she has a number of championship titles under her belt. She took the top spot at the British Karting Championship when she was only 10 years old and won another title in 2018 at the age of 12.

The young kart racing champion said that she would love to be a professional Formula One racer in the future. She shares her interest in motorsports with her brother and father.

Stevens is enrolled at Electroheads Talent Academy, which was co-founded by Robert Smedley, a former Ferrari engineer. One of the academy’s goals is to give young athletes from different backgrounds the chance to race by lowering the cost of the sport.

Smedley said that when he saw Stevens, he knew that she had the innate talent and skills to succeed as a racer. He added that as long as Stevens has the right support, she can have a successful racing career.

Currently, Stevens is preparing for an audition that will bring her closer to her dreams. The FIA racing federation chose her to try out for the prestigious Ferrari Driver Academy. Stevens will have to undergo fitness tests and show her karting skills so that the evaluators can assess her abilities.

If Stevens passes, she will start attending the Ferrari Driver Academy this fall. She would be joining other aspiring racers such as Mick Schumacher, son of F1 record-holder Michael Schumacher.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• In your opinion, should young teenagers be allowed to participate in dangerous or risky sports (e.g. kart racing, wall climbing)? Why or why not?
• What can be done to ensure the safety of young teenagers when participating in dangerous or risky sports (e.g. make sure they’re properly trained, always have a medical team nearby)? Discuss.

Discussion B

• Do you think the success of young athletes comes from innate talent or training? Explain.
• How can parents help children develop their talents in sports (e.g. practice with them, enroll them in training programs)? Discuss.