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Australian up And Comer Announces Toyota Racing Series Plans

Australian up And Comer Announces Toyota Racing Series Plans

Australian Spike Goddard is the latest international driver to sign up for New Zealand’s Toyota Racing Series.

Goddard, 20, has risen through Formula Ford in Australia and the UK and this year moved to ‘wings and slicks’ cars for the first time, winning the national class in the 2012 British Formula 3 championship. Entering the 2013 Toyota Racing Series he follows in the tracks of recent Australian TRS graduates including multiple TRS race winner Scott Pye.

“This year has been very successful for me. It was a difficult year at times, which I see as a good thing, as it was a giant leap from Formula Ford to Formula 3. I believe that I have become a better driver because of pushing myself. I also believe that doing the National Class instead of competing in the International Class was the right decision given that I did not have prior experience with aero whereas virtually all of the other drivers in British F3 were second year F3 drivers or had competed in Formula Renault which also has aero.”

It was Pye and British driver Josh Hill who first recommended TRS. Goddard’s 2013 TRS campaign took shape when his racing coach, Mike Reedy, met the series’ category manager Barrie Thomlinson at Brands Hatch earlier this year.

“Barrie and Mike then organised a meeting with Flex (Jonathan Moury), one of the owners of M2 Competition. Flex described the M2 team strategy and philosophy and the way that they operate and we decided that this was the team we were looking for,” he says.

Though he is not familiar with the circuits the series will visit, Goddard has the advantage of having raced against several of the drivers he will meet here during his recently completed British Formula 3 campaign.

“I'm hoping to use TRS to compete against some of the best young drivers from around the globe, to make me a better racing driver. It will give me a comparison with some of the drivers that I will be competing against over the next few years for that ultimate goal, a seat in F1. The timing of the TRS championship will help me to jump back into an F3 racing car, sharp and switched-on and ready for pre-season testing next March,” he says.

To familiarise himself with the five New Zealand circuits, Goddard will work with race data provided by M2 and watch TRS race coverage on Youtube – which includes extensive onboard race footage from 2011 and 2012. In the meantime he is continuing his fitness training and carrying out winter testing in preparation for 2013.

The Toyota Racing Series is the first premier championship to start the global competition year. It begins at Invercargill’s Teretonga Park Raceway, the southernmost racing circuit in the world, on 9-13 January 2013 and concludes four weekends later with the 58th New Zealand Grand Prix at Manfeild near Palmerston North.

SCOTT SIGNS WITH VICTORY MOTOR RACING FOR 2013 TRS

Te Puke racing driver Michael Scott has announced his plan to contest the 2013 Toyota Racing Series with Nelson-based Victory Motor Racing.

Scott (17) is in his final year at Te Puke High School and will take the next step in his bid to become a professional racing driver by moving up into TRS this summer after a competitive 2012 season in Formula First and Formula Ford.

The Toyota Racing Series is New Zealand’s premier single-seater motor racing category. It gives young Kiwi racers the opportunity to match themselves against some of Europe’s top up and coming drivers.

Twenty-one competitors from 12 countries contested the 2012 championship back to back over five weekends in January and February. The 2013 series is the ninth season of TRS and will follow the same successful format, which enables drivers based in the northern hemisphere to compete in NZ during their off season.

Scott says he is keen to start his first ‘wings and slicks’ season and is confident he will be competitive with the support of Victory Motor Racing.

Like many of New Zealand’s established and rising race drivers, Michael Scott started his racing career in karting before progressing on to Formula First and Formula Ford.

This year, Scott was second in the Formula Ford Championship and fourth in the Formula First series, winning the one-hour Formula First Grand Prix at Manfeild. He was named Formula Ford rookie of the year.

Scott also recently competed in the Victorian Formula Ford series in Australia with results up to fifth overall in fields of up to 40 cars.

“This was a great opportunity to get some more experience on tracks like Philip Island and Sandown during our off season,” he says.

Along with eight other promising young drivers, Scott was chosen to attend the Elite Motorsport Academy in Dunedin during July. Run by Sport NZ and the School of Physical Education at Otago University, the Academy is an intense scholarship camp where drivers are challenged both mentally and physically with a range of tasks to further develop their professional skills. It focusses on physical fitness, nutrition, promotional abilities, media skills, psychometric testing and mental performance.

To cap off a successful 2012 Scott was named Sportsman of the Year for his success in motorsport and most valuable player in 1st XI hockey at the Te Puke High School Sports Awards.

Scott is currently seeking local business support to help him contest this highly competitive series and to ultimately become a professional racing driver.

“I believe this is a unique marketing opportunity and I plan to do my best to lift the profile of any local businesses that choose me to represent them,” he says.

TRS ANNOUNCES MAJOR GLOBAL TV PACKAGE

The Toyota Racing Series has confirmed a global television deal that will possibly make it the highest profile package ever secured by a New Zealand Motor Racing category.

Following on from the international success of the 2012 series coverage, the coming series will screen in New Zealand, Europe, the UK and Australia. The Toyota Racing Series is New Zealand’s premier international race category and has propelled many talented New Zealand and overseas racers into the next steps in their careers.

In New Zealand, the TRS coverage will follow the successful format of the 2012 series; each round’s coverage will screen in a prime-time slot on SKY TV on the Friday following the round, then for ‘free to air’ audiences on Prime TV on the following day, Saturday afternoon, with coverage re-screened at least three times on SKY TV’s sport channels.

The SKY/Prime package gives the series a significant share of New Zealand’s biggest television audience.

Alongside the local coverage, TRS programme producer Volt TV has confirmed its coverage will go out to a massive European audience on Motors TV, which broadcasts into 40 countries. The new European package runs alongside the SKY/ Prime local programming, meaning race fans in Europe and the UK will see each round of the series at the same time as New Zealanders.

The announcement follows this month’s repeat screening of the 2012 series on Speed Channel in Australia, which prompted a surge of media and racer interest in TRS. The Australian broadcaster has also confirmed it will carry coverage of TRS 2013.

For race fans around the world, television producers Volt TV will also post brief ‘teaser’ highlight clips on Youtube, with links posted on the series’ website and social media channels. The SKY, Prime TV, Speed channel and Motors TV screening times will also be posted on the series website.

ends

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