A TEEN racing driver from Basildon won a top prize at the Essex TV Awards.

Emily Linscott, 16, from Basildon, won the Essex TV “Sports Person of the Year” on Saturday.

The talented youngster, who went up against a Paralympian and gymnast at the ceremony in Epping, has proven herself to be a worthy winner, having taken podium places on both sides of the Atlantic in Formula Race Cars and GT cars her in the UK. She also won back to back races at the last round of the season at Brands Hatch, and the title of Active Basildon’s “Young Sports Personality of the Year” two weeks ago.

Emily will fly to America to compete at the 2019 Cooper Tires Scholarship Shootout at the world famous Sebring International circuit in Florida, where she hopes to win big once more and claim the top prize of a full season in the 2020 Lucas Oil Formula Car Series.

Emily said: “The other two athletes shortlisted were a Paralympian and a Team GB gymnast, so I never really thought I had much chance of winning the title.

“This won’t be an easy competition. I know I’m up against some of the best young drivers from cars and karts in the USA, so I’m going to need to be at my very best.

“There’s no room for error here, you’re either on it or out of it. I’ve done everything I can to make sure I’m as ready as I could be so it’s down to my performance over the three days, both on and off track and then the judges need to do their bit.

“I really hope I can pull this off, it would mean the world to me and I’d be so proud to have paid back a tiny bit to my parents, my sponsors and Pippa Mann, who have all shown so much faith in me over the past couple of years. Let’s see what I can do.”

Emily will fly to Florida on Saturday. On Sunday she will be at the track for some reconnaissance work, Monday is her 17th birthday, but instead of taking it easy, she’ll be in the gym and practicing her media and strength work.

She will return to college on the 17th before finishing for Christmas.