AFTER pushing for glory in two national junior championships, an ambitious North Yorkshire teenager is in pole position to move into senior car racing – if he can find the necessary sponsorship.

Sixteen-year-old Ethan Hammerton ended on the podium 21 times in 26 starts this season, finishing runner-up in two competitions.

Like his hero Lewis Hamilton, Northallerton-born Ethan started racing in karts.

His father, Paul – his mechanic and mentor – bought Ethan’s first kart when he was seven and took him to the Warden Law circuit near Sunderland.

He said:“Ethan has always had the perfect racing temperament – very calm but fiercely competitive.”

He added: “He was a great runner and represented his school at both athletics and football - playing regularly for Northallerton Juniors and winning several league and cup trophies.

“He still plays now when he is not racing, he also works out in the gym and attends boxing classes to maintain his agility and strength and to keep his weight down for car racing.”

For most of the recently-completed motorsport season, Ethan was leading the Junior Saloon Car Championship (JSCC) with wins at some of the UK’s most famous racing circuits – Silverstone, Croft, Knockhill and Rockingham.

The youngster set new lap records at Knockhill, Rockingham and Croft, near Darlington – his home circuit.

The title was decided over the final race weekend at Brands Hatch, Ethan gaining two podium finishes to end as championship runner up in only his second year.

Paul said: “Ethan gave it his all and finished on the podium twice in second place which meant that he had finished the series as championship runner up in only his second year. He competed in a total of 18 races and had finished on the podium a staggering 16 times with one ‘did not finish’ when he was challenging for the lead at Rockingham and his steering broke. His lowest finishing position all season was fifth.”

Ethan also entered the UK Renault Clio Junior Championship, in a race car hugely different to the one he had been driving.

He said: “I had to drive two completely different cars in the same race weekend with only a 25-minute gap between races. The two cars could not have been more different – one a left hand drive, factory-produced race car with more grip, faster acceleration and better brakes and the other right-hand drive converted road car with standard gearbox, less grip and not as good brakes meaning that the braking points, grip and corner speeds were completely different.”

He won his second race in the car at the Snetterton circuit, setting the fastest lap.

After two more podium finishes in South Wales, Ethan finished fourth and second at Brands Hatch in the final round to clinch the championship runner-up spot.

In doing so he secured a £3,000 prize to reduce the entry fee into the UK Senior Clio Cup Championship. This senior competition runs with the British Touring Car Championship, with up to 40,000 spectators and aired live on ITV 4 to millions of viewers.

Ethan thanked his father, the rest of his family and his sponsors – Walter Thompson, HMC Group, Hadrian Health Care, AEL Electrical, Sigma Catering, Geoffrey Robinson, BC Stewart’s, ISL scaffolding, John Flowers Roofing, Northern Floorcraft, Fenetec, Boss Contracts, Heron Joinery, North Yorkshire Timber, James Burrell’s, Harvey Cooper Cars, Barwick signs, Phil Bell Paint and panel Repairs – for their support throughout the season.

Paul said: “His performances this season have shown he has the talent and determination to succeed in his ambition to be a professional driver in a British Touring Car Championship or British GT Championship car.

“In order to do so, however, he will need more financial backing and we’re hoping local and regional companies will step forward to offer their support.”

l To sponsor Ethan in 2018, contact him on Facebook, via his racing page @Ethan Hammerton Racing or email him at