Aussie Drivers Shine at Indianapolis
 September 24, 2018| 
  • Team News
Shields Aussie Griffis 2018

Over the weekend, Australian Formula Ford drivers Hunter McElrea and Cameron Shields tested wings and slicks machinery during the annual Chris Griffis Memorial Test, organised specifically for the Mazda Road To Indy.

Our current championship leader, Hunter McElrea, topped the outright Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda charts around the Indianapolis circuit, with a 1:24.5064, one tenth of a second quicker than American driver Darren Keane.

“First, many thanks to everyone at Pabst Racing. It was an amazing experience to be driving with these guys," reflected McElrea after another dominant weekend behind the wheel.

"We ended up P1 overall and I am really happy with that. Obviously, that’s where you want to be. There are a few things that I need to work on, but overall I’m very happy and it’s an amazing experience to be driving a USF2000 car here at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"I am massively happy for this opportunity and want to thank all my supporters who made it possible for me. I didn’t have any expectations coming into the weekend. I just wanted to make sure I did my best and I knew I was in really great hands with these guys."

Toowoomba-based driver Cameron Shields had his first experience on the Road To Indy program, steering a Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires car for Juncos Racing. The 270hp Mazda-powered Tatuus chassis is significantly different from anything he had ever driven before.

Shields finished the weekend with the 7th fastest time in the Pro Mazda car and gained plenty of mileage, logging more than a 130 laps around the Indianapolis road course.

With two rounds to go, the Mazda Road To Indy Shootout ticket offered to the 2018 Australian Formula Ford champion is still up for grabs, with McElrea currently the man to beat.

McElrea and Shields will be back on Aussie soil this weekend for round six of the 2018 Australian Formula Ford Championship at Phillip Island.

About the Australian Formula Ford Championship
 
Originating in the UK in 1967, Formula Ford is an entry-level open-wheel formula, widely regarded as the first major stepping stone into car racing from karting. Held annually since 1970, the Australian Formula Ford Championship has been the category for young, aspiring racing drivers to demonstrate their ability and has been renowned for producing future champions in top-tier motor racing categories in Australia and globally.

To continue fostering young talent, the Australian Formula Ford Championship formed an alliance with Andersen Promotions, promoter of the Mazda 'Road to Indy' driver development ladder. The 2018 Australian Formula Ford Champion will earn a golden ticket to enter the annual Mazda Road to Indy Scholarship Shootout, providing the winner a US$200,000 scholarship to race in the USF2000 Series the following season and a defined pathway to the Verizon IndyCar Series.

This partnership provides the groundwork to reach the Indianapolis 500, the world’s highest-attended one-day sporting event. The race was won in 2018 by Will Power - a graduate of Australian Formula Ford.

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