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British youngster aims for Le Mans

Louise Richardson aims for a run in the Le Mans 24 Hours as she continues to work her way up the motorsport ladder
Young British racing driver Louise Richardson will hope to take more small steps towards her goal of one day competing in the Le Mans 24 Hours when the Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup season resumes at Snetterton this weekend.

Her entry into the G50 class of the BTCC-supporting Ginetta series is the latest step on Louise's journey, which she hopes will end with her becoming one of a select band of female drivers to compete in the biggest endurance race in world motorsport.

The journey towards the Circuit de la Sarthe started when Louise was just eleven years old when she first got behind the wheel of a kart, and what was initially meant to be a bit of fun soon became much more as she joined older brother Andrew in moving towards a career in motorsport.

“I started karting when Dad took me and Andrew when I was eleven, and I continued in karts until I entered the Ginetta Junior Championship when I was 16,” she says. “When I first went karting I really enjoyed it, and I moved up to compete in the national championship. I started to improve and then decided to take it more seriously.

“At first, there was an element of me wanting to do what Andy was doing - he was going karting, so I wanted to go karting. When I got into Cadets however, I wanted to do it for the love of it and my desire to go further just grew.”

Being run by dad Gwyn from the rear of the team's van, Louise forged a successful career in karting before she was given the opportunity to compete for a scholarship with Ginetta.

Despite the fact she hadn't been behind the wheel of a car before, Louise impressed the judges enough to secure the scholarship and with it, a place on the grid for the 2009 Ginetta Junior Championship.

Moving into cars with a British Women Racing Drivers' Club Elite Gold Star under her belt as a reward for her achievements the previous year, Louise finished inside the top ten in her debut season despite a lack of testing and also used her move into cars to help promote the Teenage Cancer Trust.

A second season in the Junior Series followed, with her scholarship extended due to the progress made on track in 2009, and Louise took the opportunity with both hands to come of age on track.




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