Mitchell Sparrow, a twelve year old from Tuakau College, won the 2018 National Schools Karting competition two weeks ago, in Hastings. After competing at the Auckland Schools Competition and winning the final against eight other racers he went on to shine at the National competition.
“In driver training they get you to make a goal,” said Mitchell. “My goal for Nationals was to get in the top three.” As the competition went on this started to become a reality. Then, in the final Mitchell was sitting on the grid and the kart wouldn’t start! “We were trying everything we could to get it going and thank goodness it finally started!” said Mitchell. “I couldn’t believe I’d won it really! That was out of 20 of the best kids in the country.” He now gets a special plate that says ‘NS’ to use instead of his number on his kart.
Twenty schools are represented at Nationals and Mitchell represented Tuakau College. “There’s schools like Saint Kentigern there so it’s awesome to win representing a little town like Tuakau. It’s quite surreal! I got fantastic support from the school.” Mitchell got into karting mainly because his Grandad always raced. At eight years old he asked for a kart and at nine years old he got budget from a sponsor to get one. “It’s just developed over time from there really,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell’s long term goal is a career in motor sport, but his short term goal is winning a series that starts in about a month. “It goes for four months and my goal is to make the top three in every round and hopefully win the series! I now move up a class too, so I want to do testing with formula Fords and race cars! It’s all about focusing on what’s next and just staying humble.”
“Karting’s not only a career but you find life skills in it,” explained Mitchell. “For example, I run every day to keep fit. You give speeches at prize givings, so I gave one at Nationals. I also write a report after every event for my sponsors.” The closest track for Mitchell is in Hamilton, so he’s away most weekends practicing.
Mitchell said, “a special thanks to Brian from Lascom Motorsport for the amazing CRG chassis. It’s thanks to him we have the opportunity to do what we do. Also, thanks to mum and dad for everything!”