Organisers of the Formula Ford Festival celebrating both the 40th anniversary of the South Island Formula Ford Club and the 50th anniversary of Formula Ford racing in New Zealand, have announced a major prize on offer at the one day of racing, 1 May, in Christchurch.
A programme has been set up to help the winning driver to head to the UK and take part in the 50th running of the world-famous Formula Ford Festival at the Brands Hatch circuit in Kent, England.
Low Dempsey Racing, previously known as Cliff Demsey Racing, a team with a winning pedigree having won four previous Festivals, will provide a car and professional services for the Brands Hatch Festival in 2021.
This has been organised by John Crawford from Motorsport Solutions in NZ, in conjunction with Ray Racing Cars, UK.
“We all know how important Formula Ford is in the development of a driver so to have an event like this, which is showcasing the diverse selection of Formula Fords that are in NZ and the story behind so many of them, is fantastic,” acting CEO of MotorSport New Zealand, Elton Goonan said.
“NZ has a rich history of batting well above where we should be and for Kiwi drivers to be able to head to Europe and compete has always been the goal for so many.
“With what the Festival organisers have arranged, with all of the supporters, the reviving of the “Driver to Europe” programme will allow a potential star their chance to compete against the world’s up and coming best at one of the world’s most iconic tracks, Brands Hatch.
“We can’t wait to see the best of NZ’s Formula Ford drivers on track at Ruapuna, battling it out for this great prize.”
The Formula Ford Festival is an annual meeting of Ford-powered single-seater racing car with various classes of past and present Formula Fords competing.
With many drivers from around the world taking part, it creates a rare chance to compare the skills of drivers who take part in different Ford competitions across the world. Many winners of the festival have gone on to enjoy professional careers in various branches of motorsport – including fourteen who have raced in Formula One.
The Mike Pero Motorsport Park in Christchurch will host the New Zealand festival 1 May and will see an array of class racing throughout the day including two parades.
A final feature race will see the fastest 26 cars, plus four-wildcards, from across the classes, compete over 18-laps.
Cars will be split into six different classes. Group 1 will feature current Class 1 (post 2000) and 2 (1991-1999), also incorporating the NZ Formula Ford Championship competitors who will be competing in their final round of the 2021 season.
Historic Class 3 (pre-1989) cars will be split into three groups. Group 3 will feature pre-1978, Group 3 1979-1983 and Group 4 1984-1989. Invitational, modified Formula Ford, Formula Ford 2000 and historic sports cars will compete in Group 5.
Main Image: Denny Hulme at the Levin Circuit in 1964 – Terry Marshall