I recently had the pleasure of meeting 12 year old Ryder Brown and his father Jeff at the Mosport Karting Centre located at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Ontario, Canada. I instantly liked them both and agreed to take a look at his driving over the weekend. As a coach who has worked with some amazing drivers over the years, I’m not easily impressed by skill alone, but this young man showed remarkable smoothness behind the wheel.
Ryder has been racing karts since he was seven and at the time of meeting him, he was leading the championship in Briggs Junior Lite. Considering he hasn’t had any proper coaching, he’s doing quite well and it is clear that he has some natural talent. He’s shown excellent consistency with his lap times and he really shines in wet condition. After offering up a few tips, he was able to improve his lap times and his technique and the track walk we did later really helped him sharpen his lines through the corners.
In typical Mosport fashion though, the weather changed quickly and sure enough, it rained. After watching his first wet session I realized that although he wasn’t bad (better than most of the other kids), he needed a lot of help with finding the proper wet line on this course. This extra guidance helped him secure 2nd place in some sloppy conditions. His final race didn’t go so well though when drivers ahead of him checked up prematurely and caught him off guard. He went off the track and dropped well back but with a lot of effort, he was able to work his way back up to 3rd place.
When I asked him how far he wants to go with racing, he told me that he would love to be a Pro driver in ALMS and one day race at LeMans. With the right guidance, funding, and a bit of luck, I think he can certainly get there. I look forward to working with him again in the future.