Western Suburbs Weekly - - Drive Way - Bill Buys

TAYLA Dicker (pic­tured) is not what one would call an av­er­age teenager.

While her friends are off to the movies and hang­ing out at trendy cof­fee shops, the slen­der dark­brown-haired lass spends most of her free time in the cock­pit of a po­tent sin­gle-seat rac­ing car.

A fast mover in more ways than one, Tayla is one worth watch­ing in the su­per-com­pet­i­tive world of For­mula Ford.

She's been rac­ing in karts for more than half her life, took the WA and North­ern Ter­rito- ry State ti­tles in 2013, won the 2014/15 Women in Aus­tralian Mo­tor­sport devel­op­ment schol­ar­ship, and was in the top 10 of the CAMS Ju­nior Acad­emy Group in 2014.

The elo­quent 16-year-old lives at The Vines, and at­tends the Swan Val­ley Angli­can Com­mu­nity School, where she’s in Year 11.

When she’s not study­ing or work­ing on her leased Stealth racer, she helps out at her dad’s Malaga kart shop; the same one Daniel Ric­cia­rdo fre­quented in his kart­ing days.

She also gets some sage ad­vice from Asia- Pa­cific rally co- driver cham­pion Bill Hayes and, in turn, men­tors Bill’s young daugh­ter, Emily, who is in the cadet class in kart­ing.

Tayla, who will be the only girl in the field at Barba­gallo Race­way on Sun­day, April 12, is high on am­bi­tion and hopes she'll get a good re­sult.

“I’m aim­ing at a top three in the WA cham­pi­onship this year,” she said. “I’m al­ways try­ing to im­prove my driv­ing and lap times, and to also learn some of the tech­ni­cal parts of the car.”

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