Ashley Taws, driver of the "Be Anything With Barbie" race car, attended the Formula 1200 Drivers Association awards banquet last night at the Harmony Creek Golf Club in Oshawa, Ontario. A resident of Newmarket, Ontario, who turned eighteen just a...
Ashley Taws, driver of the "Be Anything With Barbie" race car, attended the Formula 1200 Drivers Association awards banquet last night at the Harmony Creek Golf Club in Oshawa, Ontario. A resident of Newmarket, Ontario, who turned eighteen just a few weeks ago, Ashley finished second in the 2001 Isseco / Kumho Formula 1200 Drivers Championship.
This year's fight for F1200 preeminence was intense, developing into a three-way struggle between Taws, Brent Gilkes and Eric Budwit. The championship, which began in April, was still undecided as the F1200s headed to Mosport for the season finale at the end of September. Gilkes clinched the title while Taws completed her sophomore season as runner-up, ahead of Budwit. In the twelve races that comprised this year's championship series, Ashley achieved seven top-three finishes and finished outside the top five only once.
This year's success was a positive progression for Ashley who made an immense impression last year when she began racing cars after six years of karting, during which she won two Canadian Grand National Championships. In her rookie season of F1200 racing, she finished third in the Isseco / Kumho championship, received the Bob Attrell Award for "best new driver" from the British Automobile Racing Club and was awarded the Muriel B Knap Award for "sportsmanship, ability and sparkle" by the Canadian Automobile Sport Clubs - Ontario Region, an honour bestowed upon her again this year.
"I had a great time racing Formula 1200," said Ashley who is hoping to move up to the Canadian Formula Ford Championship next year. "The level of competition is really good, making for very exciting races.
"I owe many thanks to all the other competitors for making it so much fun," she continued. "I would also like to thank Vallis Motor Sport for doing such a great job with the Barbie car and, most of all, thanks to my dad for making everything happen."
Now that the Formula 1200 season is over, Ashley is working as an instructor at the Gary Magwood Drive-Abilty Clinic and hopes to spend some time working for the Big Sisters of York for whom she is the Honourary Chair of the Youth Committee. Come the new year, Ashley will enter her second season of ice racing, looking to build on a rookie season in which she finished first or second in 75% of her races, took second in her class championship and became the first ever female recipient of the Rice-Attrell Trophy for rookie of the year.