Go-karter Robert ups the gears after sponsorship boost

Generous sponsorship from a Leeds business has saved Morley go-kart star Robert Newman's season.

Wednesday, 22nd June 2016, 3:03 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 4:38 pm

The East Ardsley racer was faced with prohibitive competing costs after his father Barry’s ill health forced him to retire two years ago. But thanks to an offer of funding from Berry’s Jewellers, he is still in with a shot at the EasyKart circuit title.

The 20-year-old is currently third in the international competition, which rewards its winner with a spot on the grid at the World Karting Championships.

The former Woodkirk Academy student hopes that the backing of Berry’s and further sponsorship deals could see him step up to compete in the Renault Clio Cup Championship next season after 10 years of racing.

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“The past few years in EasyKart have been thwarted by bad luck, from bad accidents to mechanical failure, when the potential was there for some very good results,” said Robert, whose ambition is to become a Formula One driver.

After managing to avoid breakdowns, the karter placed second in the second round and fifth in the third race, leaving him in sight of second place in the overall standings.

“At the beginning of the year we decided that the only way we could ocmpete is if we made a big sponsorship push. After pursuing some areas we got in contact with Berry’s and TW Steel. After some back and forth with emails we decided on a sponsorship deal and went in to meet Simon Walton who owns Berry’s and collect the funding.

“Hopefully with their help we can focus more on the race weekend than getting there and make the rest of the season as consistent and successful as the first three rounds. This should lead to a minimum top three finish.”

Robert and his team are currently in talks with MAC Tools and Ciceley Motorsport to secure a drive in the Renault Clio Cup, which will see his competition budget increase.