McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award winner to contest both days in Portugal
Reigning Formula Renault UK Champion and recently crowned 2009 McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award winner Dean Smith will contest both days of the Formula Two test in Portimao, Portugal later this week (11/12 December).
It will be Smith's maiden run in a Williams JPH1 F2 car and it follows a sensational season for the 21-year-old. He scored seven race victories and seven pole positions on his way to clinching the Formula Renault UK title earlier this year, where he stood on the podium a staggering 15 times from just 18 races.
Smith's name first came to prominence in 2005 when he won the Formula BMW UK Championship after he took three race wins and a total of nine podium positions. He also performed well in the BMW World Final later that year where he raced against current Formula One drivers Sebastien Buemi and Nico Hulkenberg. The young Briton was shortlisted for the McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award in 2007 after he finished as runner-up in the Formula Renault UK Championship. He narrowly missed out on taking the crown then but he returned to win the prestigious accolade at the AUTOSPORT Awards in London on Sunday (6 December).
Smith beat a number of up and coming stars to the award including fellow Formula Renault driver James Calado and Star Mazda Champion Adam Christodoulou. All shortlisted drivers were evaluated by an expert panel of judges following tests in a number of racing cars including an F3 and BTCC machine. Dean was presented with the Award last night by Jenson Button, Lewis Hamilton and Damon Hill, before he confirmed his participation in the two day Formula Two test in Portimao.
Dean Smith said: "This is an exciting time in my career. I am delighted to have won the 2009 McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award and I am now eager to evaluate my options for next season, one of which is Formula Two. I am really looking forward to taking part in the two day F2 test in Portimao later this week."
Jonathan Palmer said: "Dean did an outstanding job in winning the Formula Renault UK Championship this season. I first met Dean when he was first shortlisted for the McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award in 2007 and I was extremely impressed. He was a strong contender for the award back then and I was expecting him to win it this year. I was delighted when he was crowned the 2009 MABA winner yesterday and I look forward to seeing him testing the Formula Two car in Portugal, where I expect him to be ultra competitive."