Ferrari sign 11-year-old prodigy to race academy
An 11-year-old from Canada has become the youngest driver ever to be signed to Scuderia Ferrari, the racing division of the world's most famous sports car maker.
Lance Stroll, who has already had considerable success on the Canadian karting scene, will enter the Ferrari Driver Academy, a project established at Maranello last year to shepherd young talent through the ranks of professional racing.
The director of the Academy, Luca Baldisserri, is already full of praise for Stroll. "He is very young, but he has already shown in karting that he is exceptionally talented. We will follow him step by step in his forthcoming events in North America and he will soon also take part in our courses at Maranello."
Ferrari's programme is just the latest scheme to be formally launched. Motor racing, like many professional sports, is keen to nurture talented youngsters from as early an age as possible and most teams are engaged in the business of scouting future champions from the world's karting championships.
Lewis Hamilton's stunning debut with Mclaren in 2007 proved the value of this approach after the prodigy signed for the team in 1998 as a 13 year old.