Road to Indy Shootout revamp
FORMULA FORD 1600 RACER OLIVER White believes American drivers could have an advantage in the Mazda Road to Indy Shootout after a venue change.
This weekend’s event – where a $200,000 (£150,000) scholarship to compete in USF2000 is up for grabs – will take place at Bondurant Racing School with Formula Mazda cars.
White, who reached the final stage of the Shootout last year – when it was held at Laguna Seca – and was awarded a place for this year based on his performance in 2016 and leading the Walter Hayes Trophy last month, believes that some drivers may have experience of the circuit.
“Some of the Americans might have driven it [the track] before, which might make it harder for the foreign drivers,” he said. “I didn’t manage to do any simulator work, I don’t think any of the places have it [the track] on them, and that’s because it’s a driving school. In the end I just had to stick to Youtube, which is not perfect.”
Kyle Kimball, manager of operations at Mazda Motorsports, said: “It offers a level playing field with cars and a circuit where no-one has a big advantage over the others. Part of what we will be judging is how well these young drivers adapt to an unfamiliar track in an unfamiliar car.” Matt Cowley Keith Donegan Ross Martin Niall Murray James Raven Jamie Thorburn Oliver White Luke Williams
Last year’s winner Oliver Askew – who went on to take the 2017 USF2000 championship – will be on the judging panel, alongside Indycar race winner Scott Goodyear and
The original group will be narrowed down into an unspecified number of finalists, who will then be evaluated over a 30-minute race. The race winner isn’t guaranteed to win the Shootout.
Of the British and Irish entrants, White and 2016 British Racing and Sports Car Club FF1600 champion Niall Murray are the only returnees to the event. This year’s National champion Luke Williams joins a host of other FF1600 champions from Britain and abroad.
Following a vote by teams, the BRSCC FF1600 National Championship has confirmed it will visit Kirkistown for its sole standalone round next year.
The rest of its rounds support TCR UK.
White (l) and Murray (r) at last year’s MRTI Shootout
Niall Murray competed in the shootout last year at Laguna Seca