Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia will play an important role in the progression of young drivers with a new motorsport initiative, led by leading Carrera Cup racer Steven Richards.
A former V8 Supercars stalwart, Australian Formula Ford ambassador and now Carrera Cup driver, Richards has used his ties with the Australian Formula Ford Championship and front-running V8 Supercars team Ford Performance Racing to establish a tiered program that will aid young drivers to climb the Australian motorsport ladder.
As part of the initiative, the driver who wins the 2012 Australian Formula Ford Championship will receive a test in Steven Richards’ Laser Racing Porsche.
If the Formula Ford Champion then enters the 2013 Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia championship, Porsche Cars Australia will waive the driver’s participation fee for the 2013 season, valued at $35,000.
The initiative extends to drivers in the 2012 Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia championship, with the highest placed 2012 Carrera Cup driver aged under 30 awarded an evaluation drive with V8 Supercars team Ford Performance Racing; the outfit with which Richards has raced since 2007, including the 2012 Phillip Island and Bathurst endurance events.
“Porsche Carrera Cup provides all competitors with equal equipment and has provided a path for drivers to move forward into other types of motorsport, including V8 Supercars,” said Richards.
“I’m delighted to be able to provide an opportunity that helps give a young driver a look into a professionally run, world class, one-make championship.”
Porsche Cars Australia Motorsport Manager Jamey Blaikie also highlights the relevance of this initiative in today’s motorsport landscape.
“We have seen many drivers come through the Formula Ford ranks into Carrera Cup and then eventually onto a full-time V8 Supercar career. Hopefully many more young drivers can follow the path travelled by David Reynolds, a great example of a former Formula Ford Champion who has gone onto Carrera Cup success before stepping into one of Australia’s most renowned race teams, Ford Performance Racing.
“Formula Ford is a highly competitive, integral part of the motorsport pyramid in Australia, with many talented young drivers among the front-runners. Carrera Cup is the natural progression for any young drivers with aspirations for V8 Supercars.
“I’d like to thank Steven Richards for creating this initiative, generously using his ties with all three categories to aid in the progression of young racing drivers.”
Australian Formula Ford Championship Chairman, Rod Barrett, welcomes the move by Richards and Porsche Cars Australia, and reinforces the importance of having a clear structure from Formula Ford through to V8 Supercars.
“The prize that Steve and Porsche are offering is huge and all of the drivers in this year’s Formula Ford Championship will be hungry to win, knowing that this is on the line,” Barrett said.
“Having the Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia championship in the Australian motorsport landscape provides a great opportunity for young drivers looking to further themselves after Formula Ford.”
Four 2012 V8 Supercars Championship drivers have progressed from Formula Ford, to Carrera Cup and onto V8 Supercars, including David Reynolds, Dean Fiore, James Moffat and Fabian Coulthard; while David Wall, Jonathon Webb and Michael Patrizi have all contested Carrera Cup before a move to V8 Supercars.
For more information on the Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia, visit www.carreracup.com.au.