A nnewly-crowned British champion go-karter from West Yorkshire has been left devastated after thieves stole his new £10,000 machine.
Raiders struck just weeks after 12-year-old Harry Barlow was named British Easykart Cadet Karting Champion in September.
The Birel Motorsport kart was taken from the garage at his home on Gargrave Crescent, Hemsworth, between midnight and 12.45am on Saturday October 19.
Harry’s father Mark, 35, is offering a £1,000 reward for the return of the go-kart and information leading to a conviction.
The theft has meant that Harry, a Hemsworth Arts and Community Academy student, will be unable to defend his title next year. The youngster, who only started karting in the championships two years ago, would have been able to move up from the cadet section to the junior section.
Mr Barlow said: “We usually keep the go-kart in a lock-up at my business premises but I have been poorly with kidney stones so just stuck it in the garage for ease.
“We are only insured for £1,500 for outbuildings and won’t be able to buy Harry a new one.
“It cost us £9,534, not counting what we paid for the digital steering wheel and other bits.
“We just can’t afford another £10,000. Harry is absolutely devastated.
“He came home from school at lunchtime earlier this week crying his eyes out.
“This means he won’t be able to defend his British championship. We had bought him the go-kart so that he could move up a grade and as a reward for winning the title. My lad is gutted.
“We are offering a reward because we want the kart back.
“More than likely it won’t be any good but we should be able to salvage certain bits, such as the wheels, and just buy a new frame.
“The go-kart is very noisy – people must have heard it being driven through the streets.”