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Cameron Harbird, from Murston in Sittingbourne, climbs Mount Snowdon to help Dan Rooke, rallycross driver

By Poppy Jeffery

A nine-year-old who was told he doesn’t try hard enough at school decided to embark on a fundraising challenge to prove his teachers wrong.

Cameron Harbird climbed one of Britain’s tallest mountains to help his rallycross hero achieve his dreams.

The youngster, who loves cars and racing, made friends with young driver Daniel Rooke through social media.

Cameron Harbird at the top of the mountain
Cameron Harbird at the top of the mountain

Jade Tong, Cameron’s mum, said: “He’s loved it ever since he’s been walking and goes to watch it every year.

“He found one of the drivers, from Devon, on Instagram and has been messaging him.”

Daniel, who is 19, was British rallycross champion last year and this season he is competing on the international circuit but needed extra funding to take part in the last two events.

Cameron, from Murston, decided to do something to help and made a donation from his pocket money, but wanted to do more.

Jade, 26, explained: “Cameron had been saying for months that he wanted to climb Mount Snowdon and he asked if he could raise money for Dan.”

He completed his challenge on Thursday with his grandfather David, taking just under three-and-a-half hours to reach the Welsh summit and calling his proud mum from the top.

Cameron Harbird at the top
Cameron Harbird at the top

She said it was a big thing for him: “He was so chuffed, he said the visibility was so bad though from up there. He’s always been known as the child who never sat still but he’s not a naughty kid.”

Stay-at-home-mum Jade said he never got the “star of the week award” which is given to each child in the class as a reward and rotates so they all get a chance.

“He thought he’d get it on the last day of term and didn’t – his teacher said he didn’t try hard enough to deserve it,” she said.

Cameron Harbird and Dan Rooke
Cameron Harbird and Dan Rooke

Having raised £170 for the driver, he now hopes to keep proving his teachers wrong by climbing the other two highest peaks in the UK – Ben Nevis in Scotland and Scafell Pike in the Lake District – “after his feet stop hurting”.

In the meantime, he has started go-karting at Bayford Meadows in Sittingbourne and hopes to become a rallycross driver when he’s older.

Dan met up with Cameron at the British Rallycross round at Lydden near Dover at the weekend.

Dan said: “To be honest it’s left me quite speechless to think I’ve had such an impact on someone to the point they go up a mountain for me!

“I’m looking forward to seeing the photos of him on the summit as I know it was a big push against time to get there but his determination enabled him to achieve.

“The lad clearly has a heart of gold and a passion for what I’m trying to achieve."

“I’ve only met Cameron once at the World Rallycross in May and I let him hold my second place trophy for a photo and if you’ve seen the photo you’ll see that his face says it all.

“I can’t thank Cameron enough for what he’s achieved for me and I hope his dreams come true for him, he deserves it.

“I hope to do him proud at the rest of my races this year.”

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