Norfolk karting sensation Harry Webb is keen to step up
04:30 15 January 2015
After an impressive karting career, Harry Webb is keen to progress to single-seater racing cars in 2015 –with his ambitious eyes firmly on graduating to the BRDC Formula 4 Championship.
Webb, from Topcroft, near Bungay, tried hard to make the transition last year, but was unable to raise the necessary budget and so returned to his karting roots and claimed the European Rotax karting title, despite missing the opening round, with a perfect winning record.
Webb is hopeful that he can follow in George Russell’s footsteps, as the Norfolk-born racer, himself an outstanding kart racer, managed to secure the 2014 BRDC Formula 4 title and was selected as the top young racer in Britain at the Autosport/McLaren Awards and the prize of £100,000.
“Having raced karts for the last seven years and won two European and one world championship I feel the time to move into cars this year is essential for me in order to progress my racing career,” said Webb.
As a precursor to making the jump, Webb tested a Formula 4 car for Virtuosi Racing, the Carlton Rode-based Auto GP team, who are keen to join the junior championship this year with a pair of the Snetterton-built cars.
To help attract drivers, Webb, along with four other drivers, was invited by the local team for a recent try-out of the Ralph Firman Racing-built, Cosworth-powered car at Brands Hatch.
Webb was given two sessions, one in the morning followed by a second in the afternoon which afforded the local racer the chance to sample the car on dry weather, slick, tyres as the earlier session had required wet, grooved, tyres.
“With karting this year I have only done two or three days in a F4 car, so it still feels a bit alien, but I’m getting used to it,” admitted Webb.
“I think we have proved a lot and hopefully we will be in it in 2015.
“It’s a good car, it’s good fun, it’s got a reasonable amount of power and it’s quite well-balanced in the fast bits.”
Webb also left a good impression on the local team, with team principal Declan Lohan giving some good feedback.
“Harry exhibited a very professional approach to his driving and having not driven at Brands Hatch before he quickly came to grips with the track despite the cold conditions,” he said.
“Moving forward Harry could work a bit on his braking points and brake application and also on mid-corner speed, but this will all come to him with more time in the car.”
Overall Lohan believes that “Harry could have a very strong season in 2015 in the BRDC Formula 4 Championship”.
To this end the Carlton Rode team are working with Webb and his advisers on securing a budget to enable the Norfolk youngster the opportunity to show off his talents and hopefully follow in Russell’s impressive wheel tracks.