Promoted: The karting star taking on Ginetta Junior

He may share a name with a rugby legend but it is in the world of motorsport that Jonny Wilkinson wants to succeed

Promoted: The karting star taking on Ginetta Junior

The 13-year-old has had an impressive career in karting and is now preparing to make the switch to cars. But it was a birthday party several years ago that started his motorsport journey.

"For my ninth birthday I went to Formula Fast, which was my local indoor karting track, and I really loved it," recalls Wilkinson.

"After a few goes, I went to do a club championship and won it and it built up from there."

His success in club karting paved the way to a switch to the main Super One series and he finished third in IAME Cadet in 2016 with KMS, the small team he had started out with. Then this year he achieved fifth in Junior X30 - one of the most competitive karting series there is - becoming one of only five drivers to win a Super One final this year.

After enjoying that success, Wilkinson is now eager to make the transition to cars. He was one of the finalists for the Ginetta Junior scholarship last month and, although he ultimately missed out on the prize, he gained a lot from the experience, describing it as a "good learning curve".

That learning curve will now only get steeper as he will compete in the championship in 2018 with Elite Motorsport - the team that helped to power Tom Gamble to this year's title - and is busy testing ahead of the season.

"I've got to make the most of it and test at as many different tracks as I can as I'm too young to do the Winter Series," says Wilkinson.

"I think the rookie championship is the main goal for next year but any overall wins and podiums would be amazing."

Elite team boss Eddie Ives adds: "Although Jonny will be the youngest member of our squad next year, with a serious test programme planned we are confident his talent will shine through."

Longer-term, Wilkinson is aiming to make a name for himself at the top levels of motorsport, but not necessarily in Formula 1.

"In F1 there are only 20 drivers but there are a lot more options in touring cars or GT racing," he says.

With that kind of mature attitude, Wilkinson is well-placed to enjoy more success, both next year and further into the future.

Profile

Age: 13

From: Brackley

Results

2017: 5th in Super One Junior X30

2016: 3rd in Super One British IAME Cadet; 4th in LGM National Cadet; 1st in Welsh IAME Cadet

2015: 1st in Welsh IAME Cadet

2014: 4th in Welsh IAME Cadet

shares
comments
Sacha Fenestraz denies Will Palmer in 2017 Formula Renault Eurocup

Previous article

Sacha Fenestraz denies Will Palmer in 2017 Formula Renault Eurocup

Next article

Memories of the greatest junior contest

Memories of the greatest junior contest
Load comments
The 17 penalties that led to a bizarre timetable issue Plus

The 17 penalties that led to a bizarre timetable issue

OPINION: An unprecedented 17 alleged cases of gaining an advantage at Thruxton’s Club chicane in Ginetta Junior made for a set of truly baffling events, and poses further questions about the consistency of penalties in such situations

National
Sep 2, 2021
The question marks resulting from national racing's rediscovered freedoms Plus

The question marks resulting from national racing's rediscovered freedoms

OPINION: When government restrictions relaxed last month, so too did rules surrounding how club events operate, leading to a range of views on the best way forward. Beyond scrutineering, there's also the matter of in-person driver briefings and trainee marshal involvement to consider too

National
Aug 27, 2021
The uncertainty and opportunity of British F3's enforced identity change Plus

The uncertainty and opportunity of British F3's enforced identity change

OPINION: It was inevitable that British F3 would need a new identity someday amid the FIA’s stance on series outside its remit using the ‘F3’ branding. But while its mid-season switch to the GB3 moniker was met with some surprise, many championship insiders are adamant that nothing will change

National
Aug 11, 2021
The E-Type 'Beast' that took on club racing's greats Plus

The E-Type 'Beast' that took on club racing's greats

Thousands of Jaguar E-Types were produced over the years, but 60 years on from its birth, none can quite match the mighty machine that was campaigned with great success in club racing by Malcolm Hamilton

National
Aug 9, 2021
The F1 techniques club racers can use to go faster Plus

The F1 techniques club racers can use to go faster

Mercedes engineer James Wingfield is used to data in his F1 day job, but the Caterham racer shows how grassroots club drivers can also benefit from the tool

National
Aug 1, 2021
Why the Jaguar E-type remains special at 60 Plus

Why the Jaguar E-type remains special at 60

It’s 60 years since the Jaguar E-type arrived and caused a sensation. As our resident racer Ben Anderson discovered when he got behind the wheel of two special racing versions at Brands Hatch, the thrill of driving them hasn't diminished over time

GT
Jul 31, 2021
10 reasons to attend the Goodwood Festival of Speed Plus

10 reasons to attend the Goodwood Festival of Speed

It’s almost two years since Goodwood last hosted a public motorsport event, but the stars, cars and fans are now set to flock back this weekend. Here are 10 of the key elements that will make this year’s Festival of Speed unmissable

National
Jul 7, 2021
The addictive experience of racing a rallycross Supercar Plus

The addictive experience of racing a rallycross Supercar

Racing a Supercar is what every budding rallycross driver aspires to do – and it’s exactly what our reporter had the opportunity to try out. As he found, it lived up to and exceeded expectations

National
Jul 6, 2021