Kiwi racing driver Ryan Yardley will contest the opening round of this year’s Formula Pro US F4 winter series at Auto Club Speedway in California.
The former New Zealand Toyota 86 champion will be under the guidance of Kiwi Motorsport who this year surged to a third consecutive US F4 Teams’ Championship title.
The 22-year-old has been sidelined from the racing scene for 18 months as the Covid-19 pandemic quashed his 2020 career ambitions.
In 2019, Yardley contested the first round of the Australian Formula 4 Championship at Albert Park. There, he clinched a podium finish in only his second race, sharing a step on the rostrum with fellow Kiwi Taylor Cockerton.
Yardley also spent a season in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series in 2018, spending his rookie campaign at MTEC Motorsport. The youngster ended the year ninth in the championship with a standout podium finish at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park in Taupo.
However, this weekend will mark Yardley’s debut tilt in the United States, and he is eager to see how he compares to the international competition.
“I am super excited to make my racing debut here in America,” said Yardley
“I have spent a fair bit of time here in America this year and have been lucky enough to drive a fair bit, but it’s nice to get back racing after 18 months off.
“It’s awesome to be joining the current United States Formula 4 Team Champions.
“They have fast cars no doubt, and the results will come down to how well I can drive the car.”
Kiwi Motorsport team principal Garry Orton is renown for taking on budding New Zealand drivers and offering them drives in the US F4 championship.
This year saw Ronan Murphy, son of Supercars icon Greg Murphy, get the call-up.
Orton added his praise for Yardley and said he expects him to be competitive right off the bat.
“Once again it is fantastic to run another kiwi here in the States,” said Orton.
“Ryan is a family friend and I have followed his career over the years and know he will do really well.”
This weekend’s meeting will incorporate the first two points-paying rounds of the six-race series, which will then resume in February.
Yardley is expected to announce what his 2021 racing schedule will look like over the coming weeks.