Solihull teenager Mark Kimber has today, Monday, 30th November, signed a headline-grabbing deal with top karting team Strawberry Racing to compete as an official ‘works’ Tony Kart driver in 2016 in the Junior Rotax category.
The 14-year-old, whose motorsport career is looked after by Rupert Svendsen-Cook’s Veloce Sports management stable, will embark on a busy season next year with dovetailed challenges in both the British Super 1 Junior Rotax Championship and Euromax.
Off the back of an excellent season in 2015, which delivered a top six championship finish in Mini Max, Kimber’s performances didn’t go unnoticed and he will graduate into Junior Rotax with one of the most successful teams in domestic and international karting.
Strawberry Racing, which is based in Sheffield, has been the UK importer for Tony Kart since 2002 and is renowned for its preparation and attention to detail which has delivered multiple successes in a variety of categories.
“We gave a lot of thought about the right move for Mark in 2016, between stepping up to cars or staying in karts”, said Kimber’s manager Svendsen-Cook, “The opportunity with Strawberry is a great one and we hope for a successful and winning year.
“The team's history speaks for itself and we are delighted to join them. As well as Mark’s racing commitments in Junior Rotax next year, we are also going to begin preparations for a move into cars in 2017 in FIA Formula 4.”
Kimber’s 2016 campaign will begin with a visit to the Middle East on 22nd/23rd January for the Dubai ‘O’Plate at Dubai Kartdrome before then taking part in the Euromax Winter Cup in Valencia, Spain, in February.
From there, the opening round of the British Super 1 season will take place on 19th/20th March next year with the championship concluding over the weekend 24th/25th September at PF International near Grantham. The main Euromax season starts on 2nd/3rd April at Genk in Belgium and reaches a conclusion at Salbris in France on 27th/28th August.
Commenting on his 2016 deal with Tony Kart and Strawberry, Kimber said: “I'm very happy to join Strawberry as I really think we will be able to achieve a great deal and challenge for the British championship next year. The team is great, the guys know the setups for all the tracks and are a great group of people to work with – hopefully we can push for the title next year!”
Legendary Italian manufacturer Tony Kart was established in 1958 and is a multiple title winner at World Championship level with a roll call of past drivers which is a veritable ‘who’s who’ of global motorsport – including the likes of seven-time Formula One World Champion Michael Schumacher.