11. Racing Driver
Carrie Wilson became a racing driver when she was six years old. She was given a radio-controlled car for her birthday. She entered competitions with it and finished second in a national championship the following year. She was proud that she was winning races against adults. She loved the excitement of travelling to events, and her father thought that she had a natural talent for motor sport.
The next thing Carrie tried was racing go – karts – miniature cars with engines. She was given a go-kart for her eighth birthday and she won races in different countries. On her tenth birthday, she was given a picture of the famous Brazilian 1970s Formula One champion Emerson Fittipaldi and told her parents, ‘One day I want to drive as fast as him’.
Carrie’s parents said they would support her racing career as long as she worked hard at school. She was good at most sports, and represented her school as a basketball player. Her teachers said she was a born champion. She spent every spare minute at competitions or sports training, so it wasn’t easy for her to do her homework, but she managed to make some progress in most subjects.
When she was seventeen Carrie moved on to full-size racing cars. Although it was clear that she was going to have a great future in the sport as a professional driver, she would need to have some help with money if she wanted to continue in the long term. When she left school, her father gave up his job so that he could train her. Before long, Carrie started winning championships and one team called her with an offer, but she decided she wasn’t ready.
Carrie is only 23, but is becoming well know. The cars she drives are getting faster, and she’s competing against people who have been driving much longer than her. She makes money from her successes, and her father is now her full-time manager. She needs him to look after her in a tough profession.
In spite of her success, Carrie admits she still has a lot to do. ‘I watch the great drivers, and read about them’, she says. ‘Some people blame the car if they lose a race, but I know for me it’s usually because I do something wrong. When I make mistakes, I think about them and discuss them with my trainer. That’s the only way forward.’.
When Carrie Wilson took part in competitions for radio-controlled cars,