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MSA unveils national squad under new Team UK banner
Autosport International, NEC, 14 January 2010:
The Motor Sports Association (MSA), governing body for UK motor sport, will today reveal the ten young drivers that have been selected to form the national squad under the new designation of Team UK.
Announced at Autosport International, the ten drivers selected to join the MSA’s driver development scheme in 2010 are:
Drivers                        Date of birth                  2010 Championship
William Buller               17/09/1992                     British F3                           (Co Armagh)
James Calado               13/06/1989                     British F3                           (Worcs)
Alastair Fisher               30/07/1988                     BRC/IRC                           (Co Tyrone)
Adam Gould                  06/05/1987                     BRC/IRC/WRC                  (Bristol)
Martin McCormack        15/11/1985                     French C2 Champ              (Draperstown)
Alexander Sims             15/03/1988                     F3 Euro Series                  (Peterborough)
Will Stevens                  28/06/1991                     Formula Renault UK           (Surrey)
Harry Tincknell              29/10/1991                     Formula Renault UK           (Devon)
Oliver Webb                  20/03/1991                     British F3                          (Cheshire)
Dave Weston Jr             25/08/1990                     BRC/IRC/PWRC                (Aberdeen) 
Team UK represents the pinnacle of the MSA Academy structure created last year under the direction of MSA Performance Director Robert Reid to guide young drivers from eight years old through to world championship level. The new Team UK designation reflects the creation of a national squad of the country’s most promising drivers and builds on the experience gained from the previous Elite schemes in Rally and Race over the past five and three years respectively.
“We realised that there was a high degree of shared content between the Race and Rally schemes, so it made sense to bring them together,” says Colin Hilton, MSA Chief Executive. “Consolidating everything will enable the programme to become more focused; Team UK will become a recognisable identity and young drivers will aspire to join the UK national squad.”
Team UK will be operated by Brabham Performance Clinic with race and rally coaches providing specific expertise to supplement the common learning shared across all disciplines. Racing legend and 2009 Le Mans champion David Brabham will fulfil the role of National Race Coach alongside the highly experienced and three-time British Rally Champion Mark Higgins as National Rally Coach.
The content of the programme has been developed in recognition of the more focused membership, enabling a greater emphasis to be placed on driver coaching and in-car performance within the scheme. Individual fitness programmes and dietary consultations will ensure that the drivers are in the best physical shape, while the application of advanced sports psychology will equip them mentally to perform at the highest level.
Exclusive visits to teams from F1 and WRC as well as to leading component suppliers will provide invaluable insight into the demands and requirements made of top drivers and the squad will enjoy access to some of the most sophisticated simulation equipment in the world. And thanks to support from the FIA Institute’s Motor Sport Safety Fund, Team UK members will also benefit from advanced training in both road and on-track safety skills.
“It’s going to be a fabulous programme,” says David Brabham. “The MSA is offering an amazing opportunity for a very select number of drivers to join a national squad that will really help them to make huge strides in their careers. By becoming more targeted, we are looking forward to working more closely with drivers on their in-car performance, as well as developing those all-round skills needed for a successful career at the top end of world motor sport.”
The ten chosen athletes have been individually selected by those responsible for delivering the programme and represent the most promising young drivers in the country. Rally co-drivers are no longer selected to the scheme on their own merit, but are invited to participate alongside their designated driver to help develop that all-important partnership.
“We have selected ten of the most promising young British drivers to join Team UK for 2010,” says Robert Reid, MSA Performance Director and 2001 World Rally Champion co-driver. “Every member of the squad is fully committed to the programme and understands just what a fantastic opportunity this is – that is vital to its success. We are delighted with the line-up and look forward to working with them to make real progress with their careers.”
Editor’s notes:
The Motor Sports Association –
The Motor Sports Association (MSA) is the national governing body for four-wheel motor sport in the UK, responsible for the regulation and administration of the sport. The MSA is a member of the world governing body, the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and holds a seat on the World Motor Sport Council. The MSA represents 33,000 licence holders, 15,000 volunteer marshals and officials, more than 750 member clubs and issues permits for 5,000 motor sport events every year.
In recent years the MSA has expanded its remit to cover the development of the sport and currently invests in excess of £1m a year in the three elements of its Whole Sport Plan. ‘Grow’ targets an increase in participation levels, ‘Sustain’ invests in the infrastructure of the sport, its clubs and its people, and ‘Excel’ focuses on training future world champions and educating their peers.
Release MSA10-005: 14 January 2010