JAMES DAVISON SIGNS TEAM AUSTRALIA ATLANTIC DEAL Team Australia has continued its commitment to fostering local Australian talent with the announcement that James Davison will be racing in the Champ Car Atlantic Series in North America in ...
JAMES DAVISON SIGNS TEAM AUSTRALIA ATLANTIC DEAL
Team Australia has continued its commitment to fostering local Australian talent with the announcement that James Davison will be racing in the Champ Car Atlantic Series in North America in 2006.
Davison, 19, will drive for Team Australia after impressing team owners Derrick Walker, Craig Gore and John Fish with a quick and controlled display of driving whilst testing for the team in the Phoenix recently and by his efforts in the US Formula BMW Series this season.
Davison proved himself a potential champion of the future at the United States Grand Prix weekend in Indianapolis earlier this year, when he became the second Australian ever to win a race at the Indianapolis Motorsport Speedway (ironically his cousin Alex Davison won a Porsche Carrera Cup race there in 2002) and the first to win a race in an open-wheel car.
Davison is the first driver to be announced for the two-car Team Australia Atlantic program and will contest the new look series that will also reward the winner of the 2006 title with a bonus $US2 million to help pay for a ride in the Champ Car World Series in 2007.
"I want to thank Craig, Derrick and John for giving me the opportunity to provide me with a full-time ride in the Champ Car Atlantics Series next year," said Davison.
"It has been a dream of mine to race in the Champ Car World Series and now I am one step closer and I am looking forward to the challenge.
"There are more realistic opportunities in the US compared to Europe and I like the American philosophy of motor racing.
"When Team Australia first entered into Champ Car it was very exciting. It is the concept Australian motor sport has been crying out for."
Gore welcomed Davison into the Team Australia family and with three cars entered at this weekend's Lexmark Indy 300, was happy that the second phase of the team's motorsport vision could be announced in front of a home audience.
"We see Atlantics as the important "middle" step for any young driver wanting to make it to the top in this sport. Therefore the series is an important part of the Team Australia commitment to developing young talent," said Gore.
"And this is what Team Australia is all about, giving young Australians the opportunity to challenge the world's best on an international stage and we think James has what it takes."
Davison has tested for Team Australia and Derrick Walker in the United States and certainly showed signs that he could be a competitive driver in the 2006-spec Atlantic car.
"During testing James did all that we required of him, he was fast and consistent and we believe that he has a solid future in motorsport," said Walker.
"The Atlantic series is an important stepping stone for young drivers and as a team we have been encouraged by the caliber of young Australians we have seen and with the development program now in place it is an exciting time."
Davison will make his Champ Car Atlantic Series debut on the streets of Long Beach California on April 9 next year.
The championship will consist of 12 races for the season in 11 different venues.
THE TEAM AUSTRALIA PROGRAM The Team Australia program is one of the most significant in Australian motorsport history and in 2006 is set to incorporate six different categories in eight different countries on four different continents and will involve a total investment of more than $US20 million.
The total program will be exposed to a live audience of 10 million fans, a TV viewing audience of more than 420 million and produce a minimum of between five and six hours of branded viewing.
It has been developed to foster the careers of a passionate group of motorsport professionals including drivers, mechanics, fabricators, painters, technicians and engineers.
Already the program has attracted support from fantastic brands such as VISA, Qantas, the RM Williams clothing company and WPS Financial Services.
Aussie Vineyards is a newly-created wine export company which is using the naming rights of Team Australia Champ Car program to create brand awareness for its impending venture into the lucrative US wine market.
From 2006 Team Australia will include two cars in each of the following categories of racing - Champ Car World Series, V8 Supercar Championship Series, Porsche Carrera Cup, Champ Car Atlantics Series, Aussie Race Car Series and the US Formula BMW Series.
The second driver for the Team Australia Atlantic program will be announced in the near future.