New junior Ford-powered series the sole UK championship offering drivers the opportunity to score points towards F1 superlicence
Teams and championship officials have welcomed the news from motorsport’s governing body, the FIA, that Britain’s new MSA Formula championship is to play a key role in the new points-scoring system for Formula 1 driver ‘superlicences’.
In future, drivers seeking a Grand Prix seat will have to amass at least 40 superlicence points over the course of three junior single-seater seasons. The championship-winning driver in this year’s MSA Formula – Certified by FIA, Powered by Ford EcoBoost will, in addition to earning the title ‘FIA Formula 4 Champion of Great Britain’, score 10 superlicence points to get his or her career off to a flying start. Points will also be awarded to drivers finishing second, third, fourth and fifth overall.
MSA Formula is the only British race series in which superlicence points can be earned. The winners of the other FIA-accredited national Formula 4 championships, such as the Ford-powered series to be held in Spain and Australia, will also score 10 superlicence points.
Gerard Quinn, Head of Ford Racing in Europe, said the FIA’s announcement would be a major boost for young drivers looking for a positive career start: “It is brilliant news that the top five championship finishers in MSA Formula will earn superlicence points. It is a really positive move by the FIA to reward young drivers looking to get their careers off on the correct path to F1.”
The MSA Formula Champion will also receive an FIA trophy, a career-enhancing test drive with a leading FIA Formula 3 team, and will take a cut of Ford’s £30,000 cash prize fund.
Steven Hunter, team principal of JHR Developments, which will field a brace of Ford EcoBoost-powered MSA Formula chassis in 2015, said of the news: “It’s a massive bonus for MSA Formula. It’s going to attract even more people to what is already looking to be an exceptionally busy championship for 2015.”
JHR, which will display its first MSA Formula car at this week’s Autosport International show in Birmingham, is one of the 12 teams to have snapped up the 32 available chassis for the coming season, joining Carlin, Arden Motorsport, Double R Racing, Falcon Motorsport, Fortec Motorsport, JTR, MBM Motorsport, Richardson Racing, Scorpio Motorsport, SWB Motorsport and Team Pyro.