Written by GUBA Foundation Team Member: Reginald Ofori Kyere
For many kids, karting comes as a weekend pastime or as a Christmas treat from a doting parent. For Timothy, it represents a firmer push on the accelerator onto the famous, more adrenaline-induced circuits of Formula One. There, the Champagne is glistening- cold, tyre screeches are legitimately melodious and sparkling water sits at the finishing line- just to smother thirst.
Four Years separated from race tracks of Buckmore Park where he outwitted his friends to win his first race, Timothy has moved up to the Iame X30 Junior class. That was after he won several races in the lower classes including the Josh O’ Malley Memorial Cup in Rotax Minimax class in 2014, ending the season as Vice Champion.
Perhaps in Formula one folklore then years from now, the ultimate heroes in Timothy’s epic would be a mother, whom by organising karting parties at Buckmore Park for her son and his friends, unearthed his amazing talent and a doting father come biggest fan who serves as mechanic, fund raiser, organiser and a trainer among others to his son.
Hopefully, perhaps, (If we are to allow ourselves to dream for a moment) the headline in the Guardian a decade from today would read: “Defending Champion Timothy Amadi extends his Formula one lead with a peerless display to win the Italian Grand Prix”
GUBA caught up with talented kart racer and GUBA Young and Talented Award winner Timothy to talk about racing, family and the future.
Congratulations Timothy. You won the GUBA Young and Talented Award. How did you feel about such recognition?
I felt very honoured to be nominated and shortlisted in the first place let alone win it. It was such a lovely evening. Thank you
What do you think about the GUBA Awards?
The GUBA Awards is an amazing event. Bringing together so many prominent Ghanaians and Africans across the UK and Ghana. The involvement of the GUBA Foundation in ending Infant Mortality in Ghana is fantastic.
Let’s talk about your passion, racing. When and how did it start for you? Did you always want to do it or you just chanced upon it?
I started racing when I was 10. My mum organised a “karting party” at Buckmore Park, Chatham for my friends and I. It was an amazing experience. I beat them all! I Joined Buckmore Park Junior Kart club a year later, and then passed my MSA driving licence later in 2012, which would allow me to race in MSA meetings.
How are you able to balance tournaments and practice with school work?
Well, we have a tutor who comes home every week. And I do more school work in the week to make up the weekends I’m racing.
You won the Hoddesdon Kart Club Rotax Mini Max in April and June last year. Describe the feeling when you are standing on the podium.
Yes Hoddesdon Kart club is a special track for me with lots of good memories. I stood at the podium there 10 times last year. I Became Vice Champion there for the first time in karting and won many races there. Your dad is a big fan of yours, how supportive has your family been?
Without my family’s support, it won’t be possible to race! My dad is a huge part of my racing. He’s my mechanic, fund raiser, organises the races, sorts the engines with engine builders etc. He works with me at race weekends to find a perfect setup, transports the kart, engines and other things we need to race with in his van. I owe a big thank you to my family!
You idolise Lewis Hamilton. How much has he influenced you as a racer?
Yes I idolise Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen. They are drivers who had nothing, worked really hard to get to the top in motorsport. Most people underestimate how hard working and dedicated racing drivers are.
Hamilton talks about practising to perfect his start before a race. How much work do you put into getting a good start?
Yes, I discuss race starts and strategy with my dad or team boss before every race. Plan A and B starts we call it. But it’s never certain, as actions from other drivers may influence your start and you are forced to instantly change your start.
As a kart racer, where would you like to be 10 years from now?
In 10 years from now, I’ll hope to be an established driver for any of the F1 teams, Indy Car in America or DTM touring cars in Germany. However I am taking a step at a time. I am looking to graduating from karts to cars (Ginetta G40 Junior to start with) by the age of 17.
Find out more about this talented and focused young man at www.timothyamadi.com