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Young Thai driver makes karting history

Young Thai driver makes karting history

KARTING: Nong Enzo Tarnvanichkul made Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) Karting history last weekend when he became the first ever Thai champion in the sport.

By Ben Tirebuck

Friday 23 September 2022, 11:20AM

The 13-year-old Thai, who is now based in Italy, was competing in the OK Junior class (12-14 years) at the 2022 FIA Karting World Championship at the Circuito Internazionale Napoli in Sarno, Italy.

More than 110 drivers from 40 countries all across the world were competing at the three-day (Sept 16-18) annual competition, which is considered the world’s largest go-kart event.

Despite some inclement weather, Nong Enzo, driving for TONY Kart Racing team in car number 105, managed to successfully navigate the seven qualifying heats on the first two days, winning five to place him in pole position going into Sunday morning’s Super Heat.

However, there was to be a dramatic turn of events in this final session as Nong Enzo got into a tangle with Switzerland’s Kian Fardin, resulting in both drivers retiring early from the race.

Despite the disappointment, however, Nong Enzo only ended up dropping five places on the grid, thus starting the final race from sixth spot.

It didn’t take long for Nong Enzo to show his intentions as he powered around the 1550 metre track with a stunning drive, finally passing all his opponents to take back the lead on the tenth lap of the 17-lap race before storming to victory at the chequered flag. Hungary’s Adam Hideg came in second place with Poland’s Jan Przyrowski in third.

After learning of his success, Acting Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan extended his congratulations to the youngster.

“General Prawit congratulates Nong Enzo for his dedication and determination and for training so hard in his sport,” said Miss Traisuli Traisornkul, deputy spokesperson of the Prime Minister’s Office.

“He has brought great pride to Thailand with his victory,” she added. “Gen Prawit says he has every confidence Nong Enzo has the ability to step up and fulfil his dreams by becoming a professional racer in time.

"Gen Prawit added that Nong Enzo should serve as an example to all Thai people in how perseverence and hard work can help you achieve great results.”

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