A TEN-year-old boy who dreams of following in the footsteps of his hero Lewis Hamilton, looks set to compete against other rising stars across the country after just a year behind the wheel.

Talented James Lowther is already filling up the mantelpiece with go kart trophies at his home in Bishop Auckland.

But having claimed numerous race victories in regional competitions during last season, the Escomb Primary School pupil is ready to take on drivers who compete in the national go kart championships Super One.

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His mother Andrea said: “He first got into a go kart when he was eight-years-old and he wanted to go to a track in Durham but he was not tall enough.

“He didn’t race for another year because he was just really slow and then he was only finishing middle of the grid.

“But last year he just excelled and was winning races and trophies, even when he was up against kids who race nationally.

“He has done so well and he has made so many friends. Some of the other drivers have started to notice him now and congratulate him when he has had a good race.”

The youngster is an avid fan of Formula One and hopes to one day emulate the success of former world champion Lewis Hamilton, who also started out his racing career in a go kart.

James was bought his first kart by his father Martin from eBay.

Among his achievements last season, he won the club competition with two rounds at Teesside Autodrome; was awarded the John Surtees Trophy at the Rowrah Circuit, in Cumbria; and finished third at the Tyne and Wear Kart Club, in Sunderland.

Mrs Lowther added: “We don’t know which races he is going to enter yet, we are waiting to see what happens, but it will definitely be national races as he needs to get the experience.

“It is unbelievable how well he is doing and he absolutely loves it. He just wants to race all the time.”