The Australian Motor Sport Foundation (AMSF) announced today that Luke Ellery (18, VIC), Nathan Morcom (16, NSW) and CAMS Aussie Young Gun, David Whitmore (16, NSW) will join South Australian Scott Pye in the 2009 CAMS Rising Star squad. The ...
The Australian Motor Sport Foundation (AMSF) announced today that Luke Ellery (18, VIC), Nathan Morcom (16, NSW) and CAMS Aussie Young Gun, David Whitmore (16, NSW) will join South Australian Scott Pye in the 2009 CAMS Rising Star squad.
The successful drivers have had to endure an intensive selection process, which included an interview with an AMSF panel, a selection camp at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), an evaluation day in Formula Fords at Winton Raceway and a psychology analysis session with leading motor sport psychologist Noel Blundell.
"The drivers were tested both physically and mentally during the selection process and they should all be proud of how they performed," said AMSF Projects and Operations Officer, Brock Rogers.
As announced in August, the 2009 squad will be lead by current national CAMS Rising Star driver, Scott Pye, who will add some experience to next year's driver line-up. Pye was announced as the first Rising Star for 2009 last month after family commitments required his overseas ambitions be put on hold for 12 months.
Pye had an impressive rookie year in the Australian Formula Ford Championship (AFFC), qualifying inside the Top 10 in all six rounds to date and finishing on the podium on a number of occasions. Pye is currently sixth on the driver standings and third in the fight for Rookie of the Year honours, which Pye is keen to chase down.
"This year all three drivers were rookies in the AFFC; having Scott in the Program again next year means that the Program will again be looking to challenge for the title," said Rogers.
"Scott will also be able to help his team mates by sharing some of his experience and knowledge with them and hopefully helping them with their development."
Current Victorian Formula Ford 1600 championship leader Luke Ellery and NSW Formula Ford rookie Nathan Morcom, will both move up into the Australian Formula Ford Championship in 2009, competing alongside Scott Pye.
Ellery will go into 2009 full of confidence after a strong 2008 that includes winning seven out of a possible 14 races thus far. The Victorian Championship utilises circuits which the national championship will venture to next year.
Morcom is currently fifth in the NSW Formula Ford 1600 Championship and has developed quickly over the course of the year. Morcom's pace has improved dramatically and he is now matching it with the front-runners, all of whom have much greater experience.
Morcom will also go into 2009 full of confidence after winning his first ever race at a recent round held at Winton Raceway. Morcom took the opportunity to get more laps in the car and contest Round 5 of the Victorian Formula Ford 1600 Championship. After qualifying strongly Nathan went on to take the win in Race 1.
2008 CAMS Aussie Young Gun, David Whitmore will take the next step in his motor racing career, moving across from Aussie Racing Cars to contest either the Victorian or NSW Formula Ford Championships with the support of the CAMS Rising Star Program. Whitmore has had an outstanding year in sprint karts and has already adapted quickly to race cars.
"All three drivers deserve their spot in the squad and have impressed the selection squad right from the start," said Rogers.
"I am really looking forward to seeing just how much the new drivers to the Program develop over the next twelve months. The AMSF will be doing all they can to ensure they are ready to embark on an international career within the next couple of years."
As part of the Program the drivers will not only receive financial assistance but will also benefit from additional support such as; attendance at two AIS camps, regular contact with the Program psychologist, mentoring from a leading business person and access to AMSF networks.
Borland Racing Developments will continue to provide racing services for the CAMS Rising Star Program in 2009.
"Borland has again shown in 2008 it is a very capable Formula Ford team and with the dominance of the Spectrum chassis, I believe we are in the right hands with the Borland team," said Rogers.
All drivers will now undertake an extensive testing program prior to the commencement of the 2009 season.
The CAMS Rising Star Program acknowledges the support from its partners including: the Australian Sports Commission, Borland Racing Developments, Biante Model Cars, OAMPS Insurance Brokers, Mark Webber, Stand 21 Australia, Fleetwood Print Group, Just Cars, Robert Bosch (Australia), Kings Fibreglass and McBadges.