Aussie racer makes his point

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Motorsport - STEPHEN OT­T­LEY

AUS­TRALIA has a new in­ter­na­tional mo­tor-rac­ing star. Reign­ing Aus­tralian For­mula Ford cham­pion Tim Blan­chard has had a fast start in the Bri­tish se­ries and is a se­ri­ous ti­tle con­tender.

Af­ter two rounds in the Bri­tish For­mula Ford cham­pi­onship, the Melbourne-born driver is sec­ond in the points stand­ings.

The last Aussie driver to make such a strong im­pres­sion on the cat­e­gory was James Court­ney in 2000.

‘‘It’s go­ing pretty well,’’ Blan­chard says. ‘‘I’ve joined a good team. They’ve won the cham­pi­onship in the past. I’ve done a fair amount of test­ing and all the races have gone well so far.’’ That’s un­der­stat­ing things. Blan­chard led the points af­ter the first round and backed it up with two more podium fin­ishes last week­end at Scot­land’s Knock­hill cir­cuit.

His big­gest ri­val at this stage is his Ja­mun Motorsport team­mate Wayne Boyd, and Blan­chard knows he will need to main­tain his strong start if he is go­ing to win the ti­tle. If he does win it, he’ll join Court­ney and Rus­sell In­gall as Aussies to take the UK crown.

‘‘My team­mate is a good driver so we just have to keep chip­ping away get­ting good points hauls,’’ he says. ‘‘If we do that we should be there at the end of the year.’’

Blan­chard’s aim is to reach For­mula One, but he knows if he doesn’t make it his English ex­pe­ri­ence will help pre­pare him for a ca­reer in Aus­tralia.

‘‘I think V8 Su­per­cars has be­come so com­pet­i­tive that do­ing the Fu­jitsu Se­ries or Car­rera Cup isn’t enough to get you a drive in the main game,’’ he says. ‘‘You see guys like James Court­ney and Will Dav­i­son come into the se­ries with in­ter­na­tional ex­pe­ri­ence and go well.’’

Win or lose, Blan­chard is al­ready plan­ning a move to the Bri­tish For­mula Three cham­pi­onship next year.

Ti­tle push: Tim Blan­chard rips around the Knock­hill cir­cuit, where he had two podium fin­ishes.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.