Stephen Corrado. *Photo by Don Burgess
Stephen Corrado. *Photo by Don Burgess

FRIDAY, JAN. 18: It’s not always a case of like father, like son.

Stephen Corrado wanted nothing to do with karting. When his father Michael was racing down at the Southside track, he would beg his mother to leave as he was not interested in the sport.

What a difference a little time makes.

The 2012-13 season marks Stephen’s third in the sport. The Mount Saint Agnes student is competing in both the TAG (Touch and Go) and Shifter 125cc class. He’s even been away to Washington to compete.

He is one of the rising stars of the sport.

Corrado, 16, said: “In all honesty, I never used to like it. When I went down to the track to watch my dad, I’d bug my mom ‘I don’t want to be here. I just want to go home’.

“But a couple of years back, my friends and I got a yard cart. We used to zip around the yard to see who had the fastest lap.”

He said that provided enough of a spark for him to go down to the Bermuda Motorsports Park and climb in a kart to see how he could do competing against others.

His first time out Corrado said others thought he “was pretty good. For a beginner I was really talented. Everyone used to say that’s because my dad used to race, but that’s not it.”

Corrado said he now loves everything about karting.

“If you want to become a mechanic, its good because you can start on little engines and build up to 200cc, four strokes.

“I’m not a mechanic like my dad, but I thought it was interesting to work on the kart.”

He added that the Bermuda Karting Club is one big happy family and he gets along with everyone who competes or who are helping out in the pits.

“One time I had a little mishap with somebody while coming down the straightaway and spun him out by accident.

“He got all mad and I let him cool down. He got over it and we’re good now. But other than that we’re always friendly — we’re like family down there.”

Corrado prefers racing in the Shifter Class as it adds more excitement.

“Starting is pretty hard, but I’ve got that down, but there’s also going around the corner and making sure you’re in the right gear.

“I enjoy it more than TAG just because I enjoy changing the gears but they’re both very challenging.”

Karting has allowed him the opportunity to go away to compete. He was 15th in his first outing, but in his second adventure he placed third.

He said racing away he got to compete on a top quality paved track with banked corners.

“It’s much easier on the tyres. If we got the track here paved we would save a lot on tyres as the one now shreds them up pretty fast.”

He’s hoping to be a consistent third on Sunday.

Corrado said one of his goals is to finish ahead of Scott ‘Skitchy’ Barnes.

“If you can beat Scott, you’re good.

“He’s had a lot more track time than the rest of us because he’s been racing since he was a kid.

“Not that he’s old, but he’s older and has been racing his whole life. I’ve just got into the sport and it’s about practice just like everything – practice makes perfect.”

Karting is on Sunday at noon at the Bermuda Motorsports Park in Southside. Admission is $5.