LEETON'S Noah Sands may still just 15-years-old, but when it comes to motorsport, he doesn't kid around.
This year Noah is making the move from go-kart racing to the Australian Formula Ford Championship.
Noah is linking with the Canberra-based CHE Racing outfit, which is a championship winning team, certain to give him some extra zing for his first foray into car racing.
Racing go-karts has been something Noah has taken part in from early on in his life.
His potential and skills have continued to grow and grab attention along the way.
Some of this karting achievements have included club championship victories and second place in the NSW State Championship in 2017.
Noah was also a race winner and regular front runner in the cut-throat KA2 class of the Australian Kart Championship last year.
The national Formula Ford series is contested over seven rounds throughout NSW, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia.
The category, now in its 51st season, is recognised as the primary breeding ground for aspiring professional racing drivers, with its past champions including Supercars stars such as Craig Lowndes, Jamie Whincup, Garth Tander, Chaz Mostert and Anton De Pasquale.
Another Formula Ford champion, Mark Larkham, who also hailed from the MIA, is someone Noah looks up to. Larkham enjoyed a successful career as a Supercars driver, including a pole position at the Bathurst 1000.
"Everyone in Griffith and Leeton still talks about how good Mark was as a driver, and I'd love to follow in his footsteps," Noah said.
Noah will drive the Mygale Formula Ford campaigned by Lachlan Mineeff over the last three years, and has already been testing in preparation for the start of the championship.
"I've driven the car around the Wakefield Park circuit in Goulburn, there's a lot to learn and think about compared to a go-kart, but I'm getting used to it," he said.
"The biggest difference is the brake and throttle application.
"You're applying much more brake pressure, and coming out of corners you're needing to be patient on the throttle."
Noah is being guided in his progression to Formula Ford racing by CHE Racing team manager Cameron Hill, who won the Formula Ford title in 2015.
Cameron has a huge amount of knowledge and experience, and he's really good at encouraging me to get the best out of myself," he said.
"I'm also fortunate to have a fast team-mate in Tom Sargent, who won Formula Ford races last year. I'm able to compare my data to his, which is helping me learn very quickly."
The 2020 Australian Formula Ford Championship commences at Winton Motor Raceway in late March.
2020 Australian Formula Ford Championship
- Round 1: Winton Motor Raceway, 27-29 March
- Round 2: Phillip Island, 15-17 May
- Round 3: Tailem Bend, 29-31 May
- Round 4: Sandown, 24-26 July
- Round 5: Queensland Raceway, 7-9 August
- Round 6: Wakefield Park, 25-27 September
- Round 7: Sydney Motorsport Park, 13-15 November