Historic Formula Ford racers all over Australia will compete for an overseas trip as part of a revived “Driver to Europe” concept, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the open-wheel category in Australia.
The Australian Formula Ford Championship was first run 50 years ago, and from 1971-1992 the category was known as the “Driver to Europe Series”, with drivers such as Larry Perkins, Russell Norden, Tomas Mezera, Mark Larkham, Russell Ingall and Cameron McConville receiving trips to Europe, where they competed in events such as the coveted British Formula Ford Festival.
To commemorate the 50-year milestone, the Historic Formula Ford Australia Association will promote a four-round competition for Fa (pre-1978), Fb (1978-83) and Fc (1984-89) cars, with support from Factory Enterprises. Drivers will count their best three rounds, with the winning drivers in each class receiving two airfares from Australia to the UK. Second and third in each class will also receive prizes, with details to be confirmed.
Historic Formula Ford Australia President John Pymble said the reintroduction of the Driver to Europe accolade pays tribute to a significant component of Formula Ford’s heritage in Australia.
“During the 1970s and 80s, the Driver to Europe prize was a highly sought-after accolade; the Formula Ford Championship had huge fields and was extremely competitive,” Pymble said.
“The whole concept of giving the best drivers the opportunity for career progression was something that really established the national Formula Ford series as the primary breeding ground for aspiring drivers aiming for a professional career, something that has continued right through to the present day.
“We’re thrilled to be able to bring back the Driver to Europe prize, and we are greatly appreciative of the support from Factory Enterprises.
“Hopefully the class winners will make the most of their overseas trip, and perhaps take the opportunity to attend one of the excellent overseas Formula Ford race meetings, such as the Walter Hayes Trophy.”
The 2019 Historic Formula Ford Australia Driver to Europe competition will consist of events at Sydney Motorsport Park, Morgan Park, Tailem Bend and Sandown.
2019 Formula Ford Driver to Europe Competition Calendar
Round 1. HSRCA Sydney Motorsport Park, 8-9 June
Round 2. HRCC Morgan Park, 13-14 July
Round 3. SCCSA Tailem Bend, 14-15 September
Round 4. VHRR Historic Sandown, 25-27 October