Teenage karting ace Alisha Palmowski has been made an ambassador of Support Dogs.

Fifteen-year-old Aisha, who recently became the Ginetta Junior Scholarship Champion and only the second-ever female to win UK junior motorsport’s biggest, most prestigious prize, is a massive dog lover.

And now she is looking forward to combining her two great passions – motorsport and dogs - in 2022.

Chequered Flag Motorsport, the charitable arm of UK motorsport, has made Alisha an ambassador for Support Dogs – something the canine-crazy teenager is very happy about.

“When I found out I’d been made an ambassador for Support Dogs, I was over the moon – it’s a perfect match for me,” says Alisha, who has a pet dog, a Shih Tzu called Pip.

“I love dogs. I was given Pip on my sixth birthday. He’s not the brightest though and could never be able to do all the amazing things that support dogs can do!”

Alisha, from Glossop,  has a great future ahead of her as a leading young racing driver after winning UK junior motor sport’s biggest, most prestigious prize – the Junior Ginetta Scholarship, beating off competition from over 60 other young drivers.

Although the teenager is still two years away from gaining a driving licence for the road, next year she will be moving on from karts to cars, and from smaller national karting tracks to the likes of Brands Hatch and Silverstone, with driving speeds of over 100 mph.

Support Dogs is a national charity, which trains assistance dogs for children and adults with autism, epilepsy and a variety of medical conditions, including MS and cerebral palsy, enabling them to lead safer, more independent lives.

Alisha has already popped into its training centre in Sheffield to meet some of its dogs and staff and is discussing potential fundraising and awareness-raising events such as a corporate karting day and a no uniform day at her school, St Philip Howard Catholic Voluntary Academy in Glossop, where she is a Y10 pupil, and in the 25 other schools that form part of the multi-academy trust, St Ralph Sherwin.

“It’s early days yet but I’m hoping to be able to promote this fantastic charity throughout next year as I take my racing career to another level,” says Alisha, who says motorsport is in her blood.

“I’m really looking forward to next year and doing everything I can to help Support Dogs raise more funds, and to boost its profile.”

Danny Anderson, fundraising manager of Support Dogs said: “We’re delighted that Alisha is going to be an ambassador for us in the world of motorsport, especially as she is such a big dog lover. We can’t wait to start working with her.”