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Racing Steps Foundation 2009 preview

RACING STEPS FOUNDATION: 2009 PROGRAMME TO BUILD ON SUCCESSFUL FIRST YEAR JACK HARVEY JOINS RSF SQUAD After its successful inaugural year in 2008 in which the Racing Steps Foundation's young drivers saw many race wins, many podiums and ...

RACING STEPS FOUNDATION: 2009 PROGRAMME TO BUILD ON SUCCESSFUL FIRST YEAR

JACK HARVEY JOINS RSF SQUAD

After its successful inaugural year in 2008 in which the Racing Steps Foundation's young drivers saw many race wins, many podiums and some exceptional merit awards, the Foundation is now finalising its plans for the coming season which include the signing of a new beneficiary, 15 year-old Jack Harvey who with RSF colours, will step up from KF2 to Formula BMW with Fortec Motorsport.

RSF founder Graham Sharp: "At the start of this initiative we were at pains to take great care in the selection of beneficiaries and teams. We were rewarded for that care with some outstanding results only possible through the single-minded application of each of the drivers, the race skills of the top teams to ensure the best possible cars and of course the necessary funding".

Oliver Turvey: a remarkable performance in his first year of Formula 3 only just missing the overall British International F3 Championship crown at the last race. During 2008, the Cambridge student also successfully completed his Engineering degree, was invited to join the ranks of the BRDC Superstars and was awarded both the Dunhill Future Champions prize and the first ever Cambridge Full Blue for motor sport. At the Autosport Awards in December Oliver also received the accolade of 'National Driver of the Year'. For 2009, Oliver is to step up from the 210 bhp of F3 to 500 bhp when he contends the World Series by Renault driving one of their F1-specced, 3.5 litre race cars. Oliver will be staying with Carlin Motorsport for his World Series campaign.

James Calado: his first year in Formula Renault UK saw the 19 year-old former European kart champion score three pole positions, four podium finishes including one win and two fastest laps in the series with some lightning performances that have ensured his continued RSF support. More recently, James has demonstrated his maturing race-craft by winning both the Formula Renault UK and Portugal Winter series. James will build on that impressive debut record by again contending the Formula Renault UK 2.0 Championship in 2009 with Fortec Motorsport.

Jake Dennis: one of Martin Hines' Zip Young Guns, 13 year-old Jake showed great promise last year by achieving two fastest laps, seven podium finishes including three wins in 'Stars and two fastest laps and three podium finishes including one win in 'Super 1. His race-craft made him Britain's first BRDC Stars of Tomorrow KF3 Champion, the youngest driver to take the title in both this new class and in its forerunner, Junior Continental A. He also competed in the MSA Super 1 British Junior Championship, plus the Kartmasters MSA GP and the Bridgestone Cup. Like Oliver Turvey, Jake was also honoured at the Autosport Awards where he received his BRDC Stars of Tomorrow KF3 Champion's Trophy. The RSF will support Jake this year who driving with the Zip Young Guns team again, will be moving up to the CIK KF3 European Championship plus the WSK International Series while contending the MSA Super 1 British Junior series. He will also compete in a number of other high profile international meetings such as the Monaco and CIK World Cups.

John Surtees, RSF Ambassador: "It has been a fascinating experience seeing this unique programme help young talent to achieve their aims. I said at the start this was a very worthy initiative and the first year has proved it to be exactly that. I look forward to working with the RSF team to ensure similar or better results in 2009".

The fourth 2008 RSF driver, the Zip kart 'Young Gun', 12 year-old Jacob Stilp, is currently contending the KF3 Winter Series.

Jack Harvey, new RSF recruit Jack from Bassingham, Lincolnshire, has been a consistent star on the karting scene since his first full season in 2003 when he became the World Technical Product Champion. The next year he joined the ranks of the Zip Young Guns before moving on to Rotax MiniMax in 2005 and became the MSA Super 1 British Junior Champion the next year. He won all four heats and the finals of the CIK FIA European KF3 Championship in 2007 before becoming a Birel factory driver last year. Jack who at only 15 has a remarkable total of 10 titles to his credit, will be contending the Formula BMW championship with Fortec Motorsport.

The Racing Steps Foundation is a unique initiative established to help young motor racing hopefuls to fulfil their dreams of succeeding perhaps to the highest level of all, the FIA Formula 1 Grand Prix Championship. Specifically, the RSF is aimed at those young British drivers whose talent might not be realised due to lack of funds. For the RSF which is a not-for-profit, privately funded initiative, 2009 is its second year.

In order to ensure proper management of the funds, the programmes and the beneficiaries, the RSF has appointed Worldsport Management Ltd (WML) in the form of principal Derek Walters and his associate on the project, Simon Pearson. Final decisions concerning the management of the RSF and its beneficiaries will be taken by the RSF and when necessary after consultation with WML, the RSF selected Teams, Martin Hines and the Ambassador to the RSF, John Surtees OBE.

-credit: racingsteps.com

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About this article
Series BF3 , Formula BMW , Formula Renault , Kart
Drivers John Surtees , Oliver Turvey , Jack Harvey , James Calado , Jake Dennis
Teams Carlin