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SIX OF THE BEST AS BRDC SUPERSTARS ANNOUNCES CLASS OF 2019

The BRDC SuperStars, Britain’s motor racing talent-supporting programme, has announced its roster for 2019, which includes nine champions, Autosport BRDC Award winners, and Formula 1 juniors.

The British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) founded the programme in 2008 and after 11 strong years under the watch of Tim Harvey, with the support of Derek Warwick, now has Andy Meyrick as its Director. Former SuperStar, and current BMW Formula E driver, Alexander Sims will continue in his role as an ambassador to the programme, allowing members to access and benefit from a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Over 70 drivers have since benefited from the guidance which the BRDC SuperStars programme has to offer. Several graduates have gone on to achieve notable success in high level, international motor sport, with Alex Albon, George Russell, and Lando Norris getting their chance in Formula 1 this year.

Six new drivers will become BRDC SuperStars in 2019: McLaren Autosport BRDC Award winner Tom Gamble, Eurocup Formula Renault champion Max Fewtrell, F4 British champion Kiern Jewiss, Asian Le Mans Series LMP3 champion Phil Hanson, British GT GT4 champion Jack Mitchell, and BRDC British Formula 3 Championship podium finisher Billy Monger.

17-year old McLaren Autosport BRDC Award winner Tom Gamble took two victories during his maiden BRDC British Formula 3 Championship campaign last year, showing his versatility after being crowned Ginetta Junior champion in 2017. The youngster is one of several who is working on exciting plans for this season, which will be confirmed in due course.

Joining Tom are two fellow Award finalists: Max Fewtrell and Kiern Jewiss. Max, a two-time champion, built on his F4 British success in 2016 with an impressive run to the title in Formula Renault Eurocup last year. His talents have not only earned him a drive in the new FIA Formula 3 Championship with front-running outfit ART GP this season, but also a place in the Renault Sport Academy.

Kiern, who took the F4 British title last year with a record-breaking number of points and podiums, and the largest winning margin in the series’ history, graduates to the competitive BRDC British Formula 3 Championship for 2019. He will race with Douglas Motorsport, with whom he became Rookie Champion in the Ginetta Junior Championship.

Rising endurance racing ace and 2017-18 Asian Le Mans Series LMP3 champion Phil Hanson earns a place as he undertakes a triple campaign with United Autosports. He is already a race winner in LMP2 in the new AsLMS season, returns to the European Le Mans Series for a second time, and also will complete a full season in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

Jack Mitchell is another endurance racing star, having won GT4 titles in both the British GT and China GT Championships in 2018. He remains with Century Motorsport in the UK but moves up to the GT3 Pro-Am class in a BMW M6 GT3.

Rounding off the new members is Billy Monger, who has been influential in showing what can be achieved by racing drivers with physical disabilities in the past year. He competed in the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship in 2018, taking three podiums and one pole position, and is aiming to continue his progress this season.

Making their returns to the BRDC SuperStars programme are a pair of Formula 1-affiliated drivers in Callum Ilott and Dan Ticktum. Callum, part of the Ferrari Driver Academy, finished third in his debut GP3 Series season last year, taking two wins and seven podium finishes. Dan, a Red Bull Junior, will build on his second-place in the 2018 FIA Formula 3 European Championship and double Macau Grand Prix victories with a full season in Super Formula as he knocks on the door of an F1 drive.

Enaam Ahmed scored two overall victories in his debut FIA Formula 3 European Championship season in 2018, finishing fourth in the Rookie standings after dominating the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship in 2017. He will be looking to carry the momentum on with exciting plans for the year which will be announced at a later date.

2017 BTCC Champion Ash Sutton bounced back from a disappointing start to his campaign last year, scoring an excellent six wins in the final 18 races of the season, as well as taking two wins in two races in TCR UK and a podium in TCR Europe. His plans will also be confirmed in due course.

Proving himself to be adept at endurance racing and performing well in a Bentley, Seb Morris had the pace to match some of the quickest drivers in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup last season, though bad luck curtailed the team’s efforts. He returns in that series with Team Parker Racing, with whom he became British GT Champion two years ago.

Firmly established in GT racing, after being crowned Porsche Carrera Cup GB champion in 2017, is Charlie Eastwood, who has already recorded three second-place GTE Am finishes in the current FIA WEC season, which runs through to Le Mans in June. On top of that he is another driver with further activities planned, which will be confirmed shortly.

Enaam Ahmed – TBC

“It means a lot to be invited back as a BRDC SuperStar as I didn’t even know if I was going to be racing this year, but the Club stood behind me, helped me a lot, and believed in me. I feel really thankful to be part of it.

“When things are going well everything is great, but I have seen how helpful it is to have the advice of Members when things weren’t going as well and I didn’t know what I was doing.”

Charlie Eastwood – FIA World Endurance Championship with TF Sport

“Last year it was a surprise to become a SuperStar so to be able to come back again is amazing. It is great to be involved under both Tim Harvey – who was a great help all through last year – and Andy, who I didn’t know before this but am already getting on really well with. We’re already talking about development in myself and how I can improve and how the SuperStars can help with that.

“Part of the privilege of being on the programme is having access to these connections; people that know a lot more than I do about motor sport and how to make a career in it that we all have at our disposal, and that is a massive benefit for me.”

Max Fewtrell – FIA Formula 3 Championship with ART GP

“I feel pretty honoured to be invited on to the programme. I know a few of the guys on it and there’s a few I look up to who are in higher categories and doing well in their careers, so to join them is an honour for me.

“To see drivers like Alex Albon, George Russell, and Lando Norris doing well after being SuperStars is encouraging. I’m friends with those guys so to see them do well motivates me and shows me that it is possible to get through the ranks to the top nowadays. It definitely pushes us guys along.”

Tom Gamble – TBC

“I got to be part of the Rising Stars last year and to step up to be a SuperStar is awesome. It’s a great programme which has some fantastic drivers on it, like George Russell, who have gone on to Formula 1, so it is great to be part of.

“Andy has been a massive help, working closely with me to help me get a deal done for this season. Obviously if you go in the wrong car with the wrong team it can cost you, so Andy has been great in directing me to the right places. He’s been a massive help.”

Phil Hanson – FIA World Endurance Championship, European Le Mans Series, and Asian Le Mans Series with United Autosports

"I'm delighted that my recent sportscar results have been acknowledged by the BRDC in my graduation from Rising Star to SuperStar status. It's a privilege to now be a BRDC SuperStar, an initiative that has seen and supported many drivers in the past who have gone on to become great ambassadors for our sport.

“2019 is set to be my busiest to date while Silverstone [the home of the BRDC] will mark a hectic weekend for me in August when I contest European Le Mans Series and FIA World Endurance Championship races over consecutive days."

Callum Ilott – FIA Formula 2 Championship with Charouz Racing System

“Being part of the BRDC SuperStars programme for me has a lot of positives. Firstly, it really builds on and complements what I am already learning via the Ferrari Academy programme; it’s always good to be exposed to different philosophies and approaches. You learn as a young driver to squeeze the most out of every opportunity, so I always enjoy attending its networking events and meeting all the BRDC drivers.

“Aside, of course, from the kudos of being selected by the BRDC, Andy Meyrick and his team give me a different perspective and I really value their input. It’s kind of like a home from home in the driving world so, as I move up to F2, I plan to make the most of it once more.”

Kiern Jewiss – BRDC British Formula 3 Championship with Douglas Motorsport

“It’s what you want to be. I was a Rising Star before, so it is just whether you are lucky enough to be selected to be a SuperStar as there aren’t many of us. It is a very prestigious Club and I am glad to be a part of it.

“We’ve spoken a lot already and have been sharing our thoughts, so it has been good for me. You’re in good hands that’s for sure. It pushes you more and more when you see who has been a SuperStar previously, and to know that hopefully you can be following in their footsteps would be a great thing.”

Jack Mitchell – British GT Championship with Century Motorsport

“It was a bit of a shock at first. Growing up as a racing driver and looking at some of the big names who have been on the programme, to be on there and be helped is an honour and hopefully something I can use wisely to help me progress as a driver.

“I’ve had a little bit of help from Andy already and he has given me advice and put me in contact with people I probably wouldn’t have been with if it wasn’t for him. The drivers on the programme are quite young but we’ve been around for a long time and there is a lot of knowledge in different series so we will all learn from each other and I am looking forward to getting started.”

Billy Monger - TBC

“It is a massive honour. I’ve been a Rising Star since the beginning of last year so I feel honoured that the BRDC have recognised what I have achieved so far and what I can achieve in the future with SuperStar status.

“You look at the people who have been on the programme and what they have achieved. That I have been invited on such a programme keeps me positive about what the future holds for my career and what I will be able to achieve in racing. I’ve had the opportunity to meet Andy and take some words of wisdom and advice onboard already and I look forward to seeing what the BRDC can offer me and help me become a better driver all around.”

Seb Morris – Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup with Team Parker Racing

“I’m really happy to be back. It’s a bit different with Andy now being the Director. Tim did a brilliant job, especially with me and a lot of things both on and off track, and it will be great to have Andy. I know him very well and I know the impact he will have on the programme will be brilliant, so I am looking forward to working with him and the other guys.”

Ashley Sutton – TBC

“It’s great to be involved with the BRDC full stop, so to be aligned to the SuperStars programme is something I am really happy about. It was great having the support last year and it will be good to work with Andy this season.

“If there has been anything I’ve ever queried or needed advice on, Tim was very accessible and I could always pick the phone up and come away with a clearer direction of where I was going. It is an honour to be a part of the SuperStars.”

Dan Ticktum – Super Formula with Team Mugen

“I’m massively happy to be back on the programme. It’s a shame to see Tim leave after all he has done for young drivers, but Andy has been really positive and engaging in the short space of time he has been involved. He’s bringing a lot of fresh ideas to the programme, which in part is because he’s still an active driver and is a former SuperStar himself. It’s a great programme to be on and I’m very happy.”

To keep up to date with the progress of our current SuperStars, please follow @BRDCSuperStars on Twitter and @brdc_superstars on Instagram.

With thanks to our BRDC Young Driver Patrons

 

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