Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Go-karter Sidebottom seals title victory

Echuca's Reece Sidebottom won a Victorian Closed Title at Portland last weekend.

GEORDIE COWAN December 6, 2013 4:04am

Reece Sidebottom was victorious at Portland on the weekend.

Echuca go-karter Reece Sidebottom wrapped up 2013 in style when he won a Victorian Closed Title on the weekend.

The 13-year-old was prominent in the junior national light class races throughout the event, before racing away to win by more than four seconds in the final at Portland and District Kart Club.

It is the second time he has won a closed title after being victorious in the rookies class two years ago.

The win means Sidebottom is the best in Victoria in the class and the win complements the Victorian and South Australian open state titles he also received this year.

‘‘This year has been one of the good years for how we’ve been going,’’ he said.

The successful finish sets him up for next year, which will be a new challenge for the year 7 St Joseph’s College student.

As well as competing in junior national light, he will also further race in junior Rotax, in which he reaches speeds of about 120km/h.

Sidebottom has aims to finish the six-race season among the top three competitors, which would see him qualify for the world championships.

Having so much racing experience already, Sidebottom has enjoyed the new challenges as he rises through the ranks.

‘‘It has gotten a lot harder, which has made it more fun,’’ he said.

‘‘The karts just go a lot faster than in the other classes,’’ Sidebottom said.

Sidebottom has received a lot of help along the way, including that of five-time Grand Prix motorcycle road racing world champion Mick Doohan.

As well as helping him travel to Queensland and Darwin for competitions, Doohan maintains a close relationship with the young racer and sent him a congratulatory text after the title win on the weekend.

Bendigo engine builder Brett Arnett and Peter Gazzard in Mt Gambier also provide a lot of support to Sidebottom and his family throughout his travels.

Echuca’s Shaun Costello also did well at the Victorian Closed Titles, competing in two events.

Costello competed against Sidebottom in junior national light and eventually finished eighth, while he produced a better result in junior national heavy with a fifth-placed finish in the final.

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