Driver Development Programs for the aspiring race driver are highlights of this week’s edition of the Driver Development News & Racecraft Tips & Techniques Roundup.
I have featured several programs that you can apply to as well as updates on some winners for 2023. In addition to driver development programs, I have a great selection of racecraft tips including four types of overtakes you should master, why smooth is faster, the importance of testing on a sim and more. I also have two driver spotlights that will hopefully inspire you.
All this and much more in this week’s edition of the Driver Development News & Racecraft Tips & Techniques Roundup on Motorsport Prospects.
Racecraft Tips & Techniques
In the video above, Enzo Mucci explains the 4 types of overtakes that you need to master. “Here we will focus on some of my favourite overtaking maneuvers and use iRacing to demonstrate them.”
Blayze looks at the issues around turning the steering wheel too much. “At Blayze one of our key coaching topics is helping drivers become smoother on the track. Understanding how much to turn the steering wheel in a corner helps lead you to become a smoother driver.”
Don’t forget that Motorsport Prospects readers get a special discount on Blayze services using this code.
Ross Bentley of Speed Secrets talks foot speed in answering the question, How can I improve how quickly I apply the brakes?
In the video above, Scott Mansell of Driver 61 looks at Jenson Button and explains why smooth is fast.
Your Data Driven discusses tire pressure and handling balance in finding your perfect setup. “Are you struggling with handling imbalances in your track car? There could be many factors causing this, but have you considered the relationship between tyre pressure and handling balance? In this article, you’ll learn how and why simple tyre pressure changes can make a significant difference in your car’s handling balance. And the best bit? Tyre pressures are one of the easiest setup changes to make on your track car.”
The tweet from Scott McLaughlin above is reason enough why you should be reading my Sim Racing and Esports Weekly Roundup…
Dale Earnhardt Jr agrees with Scott. “The former NASCAR driver did admit that he had felt that way sometimes in his racing career. That is why he was glad to hear Reddick’s response that sim racing has become a bigger tool, and that it is important that they treat it professionally and squeeze every ounce of information they can.”
Race Driver Development News & Resources
PT Autosport will open the application process on Saturday, April 1 for its second annual Aspiring Driver Shootout, to be held August 1st through 3rd at New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP) in Millville, New Jersey. The team is dedicated to increasing the presence of junior drivers in the motorsports industry that come from diverse ethnic and economic backgrounds. Paramount to this mission is creating career development opportunities and forming an educational, competitive, and supportive environment for all team members, allowing them to grow and learn. PT Autosport is a newly formed racing team currently based at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, NJ. The team is currently campaigning the rising star Alex Sedgwick (U.K.) in the Porsche Deluxe Carrera Cup North America for the 2023 season with JDX Racing. Visit www.DriverShootout.com or www.PTAutosport.com for more info and follow them on Instagram @pt_autosport for updates.
“PT Autosport has formed a multi-tiered development program that begins with the Aspiring Driver Shootout. The winner is granted a $100,000 racing partnership and joins the team’s junior racing program, progressing to an advanced racing series within the team or with one of the team’s operational partners. Ultimately, the goal will be for each driver to graduate to the team’s professional level program, racing in the Porsche Deluxe Carrera Cup North America and beyond.”
The SCCA Women on Track (WOT) Initiative is continuing one of its most popular programs in 2023, awarding a pair of SCCA Women on Track Road Racing School Scholarships funded by the SCCA Foundation again this spring. Two recipients of this year’s SCCA Women on Track Road Racing School Scholarship will receive $1,000 each from the SCCA Foundation, with the scholarship helping fund their entry into the sport of road racing. Applicants do not need to be an existing member of the SCCA prior to being awarded the scholarship. Upon receipt of the scholarship, the awardees will join the SCCA and should intend to participate in road racing upon graduation from an SCCA approved road racing school of their choosing. Ideally, recipients should have a race car available to them for their competition school, although loaner race cars specific to this scholarship are available in certain portions of the country.
The SCCA Women on Track Road Racing School Scholarship application is now open, with a submission deadline of April 30, 2023. All submissions will be forwarded to the selection committee, chaired by SCCA road racer Cherie Storms. Use this link for the Scholarship Application.
Daryl DeLeon Taylor has been awarded the Team HARD touring car scholarship for 2023. The Filipino-British driver bested 150+ other hopefuls who participated in Team HARD. Racing’s scholarship program. Each candidate was assessed based on physical fitness, media relationship, and driving abilities to see who can excel in all areas and be the best fit to race with the team. After spending several days at the Blyton Park Driving Center and Brands Hatch with different types of machinery, the pool was narrowed down to 15 drivers, then to 6, until only 3 finalists remained with Daryl eventually being announced as the winner.
“It’s an honour to be the winner of the team’s scholarship programme and to be racing for Team HARD. Racing this year. Driving the Audi S3 BTCC car is going to be fantastic for our development this season. We’ve been working hard with the team, and we’re ready to race.”
Applications are open for the 2024 edition of the Scholarship. You can find more information and how to apply here.
Heather Hadley is the winner of the Mazda 2023 Women’s Initiative Scholarship. “Mazda is proud to provide opportunities for talented women in motorsports like Heather Hadley.”
In an interview with PRI, SRO Motorsports America’s Greg Gill has made a special point to credit SRO’s strong social-media presence on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitch with introducing its myriad classes to both new fans and potential competitors, especially women. “Our enhanced content creation has been focused on video driving social engagement,” he said. “Our paddock is diverse in terms of both hardware and people. I believe we have more women racing with us than any other professional road racing series in North America.”
Performance Physixx is in the process of preparing to roll out their 2023 Driver Training Camps. All Camps will involve input from their expert teams of professionals both face to face and via video link/Zoom etc. and will be available in the United States, mainland Europe and the UK. For more details and contact information, consult their Motorsport Prospects Directory listing at https://www.motorsportprospects.com/listings/services/performance-physixx/ and follow their Instagram page at https://www.instagram.com/p/CpvU9YvjqTV/?hl=en.
Motorsport author Hazel Southwell is writing a book about motorsport junior series, from grassroots and karting to top single seaters, why some drivers make it – and what happens to the ones that don’t.
“It will be interview-based and it’s about telling the story of what it takes to even get a foot on the ladder. why junior series are so important and where they came from (and where they could go in the future) – I’m setting up interviews & I’m always interested in doing more. I’d like to speak to anyone connected to junior careers; drivers, tracks, teams, managers, sponsors, parents, etc I definitely want to speak to people who started up the pathway and then found it took them to a different place. the stories that aren’t always told.”
You can contact Hazel directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. She is looking to speak to people in the next month or so.
Learning from the experience of others is key to succeeding in any walk of life and racing is no different. In Driver Snapshots, I will feature the experiences of various drivers where you can get some perspective on what they have gone through (and continue to go through) as they work to make their motorsport careers happen. I hope you can take some lessons from these experiences and apply them to your own motorsport careers.
The video above is a documentary following the Riley family across the country as their son, Austin, chases his dream of becoming a professional race car driver as part of his Racing with Autism team.
Podium Life sat down with Pippa Mann to discuss her career, women in motorsport and what she hopes to achieve with her non-profit organization Shift Up Now.
“One of the things that is really interesting about women in motorsports, especially for newer race fans, is that motorsports is a sport where men and women compete equally. If you give men and women the same opportunity, the same funding, the same equipment, you are just as likely to see women standing on podiums and winning races as you are men. That’s a cool thing about motorsports that not many other sports can say.”