World Speed Motorsports/MMI Rising Star Award Winners Announced 11/18/03-- Las Vegas, NV - For the third consecutive year World Speed Motorsports has awarded a test to drivers at the SKUSA SuperNationals in Las Vegas, NV. The awards were...
World Speed Motorsports/MMI Rising Star Award Winners Announced
11/18/03-- Las Vegas, NV - For the third consecutive year World Speed Motorsports has awarded a test to drivers at the SKUSA SuperNationals in Las Vegas, NV. The awards were given to the winner of the 80 Junior race and a "pick at large" in the same race. The winner of the event was 12 year old Cole Whitt. Ryan Phinny was selected as the pick at large due to his quick race times, excellent kart control, and impressive showings during the regular season.
"Both drivers showed great determination in the final, and I was thrilled to be able to show them that their skills didn't go unnoticed," said Michael McDowell who was on hand to present the racers with their certificates. Telo Stewart, World Speed Motorsports President added, "This is the third year we've been able to provide this test, and the second year with MMI's support. I'm looking forward to seeing what Cole and Ryan are capable of in a racecar. All of the previous Rising Star Award winners were impressive, and while Cole will definitely be the youngest driver we have tested, I expect these drivers will be just as remarkable."
Bill Mayer President of MMI had these comments for the winners and their parents; "The idea behind my helping young karters move up the ladder and into cars is that through the experience they will learn a lot about life in general. I call it Building Kids Through Motorsports and things like this test are experiences that will, hopefully, give these kids something to shoot for and an idea what it takes to succeed."
Both drivers will test in the latest World Speed Motorsports Fran Am 1600 car. The test dates and locations will be announced later in the year, but most likely will take place at Buttonwillow Raceway Park in California. World Speed Motorsports' intention is to bridge the gap between karting and professional motorsports in hopes to field more young American drivers in the top ranks such as F1, CART, and Indy. For 2004 WSM will be returning to the Star Mazda Series. They've competed in the series for 10 years, won 6 Championships and were runner-up every year they didn't take the Championship. The team will also continue in the Fran-Am West Series for 2004. Fran-Am allows training of drivers as young as 14, preparing them for more powerful cars like the new Pro Mazda and Toyota Atlantic.