Aware that top young Canadian racers are competing not only in Canada, but throughout North America, the Team Canada selection committee has expanded the eligible series that drivers can be chosen from to include not only the Ontario-based Toyo Tires F1600 Championship and Quebec-based Formula Tour 1600 Series, but also the USA-based F1600 Formula F Championship Series, F2000 Championship Series, and Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered Mazda series.
"With young Canadian drivers competing across North America in some of the toughest series around, we definitely have a talented pool of drivers to choose from," commented Team Canada Scholarship co-founder Brian Graham.
After reviewing both on and off the track performances, as well as talking with teams and officials, the Team Canada selection has come up with a list of ten highly-regarded Canadian up-and-comers. Chosen as 2012 Team Scholarship nominees are:
Michael Adams, 18, Toyo Tires F1600 Championship
Guillaume Archambault, 17, Formula Tour 1600
Nathan Blok, 18, Formula Tour 1600
Marc Antoine Cardin, 16, Formula Tour 1600
Garett Grist, 17, F1600 Championship Series
Matthew Di Leo, 18, Cooper Tires USF2000
JP Jodoin, 17, Formula Tour 1600
Scott Hargrove, 17, Cooper Tires USF2000
Dalton Kellett, 18, Cooper Tires USF2000
Thomas McGregor, 20, Cooper Tires USF2000
One driver from this talented group will be selected to represent Team Canada in the 2012 edition of the Formula Ford Festival. Team Canada will once again partner with Formula Ford leader and former winner Cliff Dempsey Racing , and run under the same tent as the Team USA cars.
"We are thrilled and excited about the 2012 edition of the Team Canada Scholarship!" commented Team Canada scholarship co-founder Gerry Merz. "The group of talented young drivers to choose from this year is making our entire team believe that a place on the podium is a very real possibility."
The Team Canada Scholarship is a reality thanks to corporate partners such as Brad Morris and Grote Industries of Canada, as well as Nick Majors and the Race Driver's Guild of Canada. Additional support comes from Formula Tour 1600, LSI International, Hallman Construction, Major Gen. Lew Mackenzie (RET), Bamford Produce, Rod-End Mechanical, BGR Team Grote, as well as from new partners Bollenbach Insurance, Harvan Engineering LTD, Door Doctor. More Team Canada backers will be named shortly.
"It is a year round job to put this program together, and it is getting close to go time," continued Merz. "It is not the best economic times to be hunting for support, so we certainly do appreciate the support of all our partners."
"We are excited to welcome back our supporters, and thrilled to bring in new partners who all make this venture a possibility," concluded Graham.
The 2012 edition of the Formula Ford Festival will be held at the Brands Hatch Circuit outside of Kent, England, on October 27-28, with Team Canada taking part in testing prior to the event getting underway. After winning their semi-final and sitting on pole for the final in its debut appearance, hopes are high for another great showing by the lucky driver who will be chosen to represent Team Canada.
With all the candidates slated to be back on-track in their respective series over the upcoming Labour Day weekend (September 1-2), the selection committee has another opportunity to watch and evaluate, before narrowing down the search prior to the final selection.
Learn more about the Team Canada Scholarship program at www.teamcanadaracing.org
From Brian Graham / Team Canada