Bullish search for a star 02 Aug 2004
An ambitious attempt to find an American Formula One star will enter its next phase next week as the Red Bull Driver Search holds the first of two 'run offs', with 222 ambitious young racers taking place in a comprehensive comparison challenge.
The initial 'open qualifying' phase of the driver search allowed any racer between the ages of 13 and 17 to set a fast time at one of 56 selected American karting circuits. The 'run offs' will put the drivers who performed best into identical Rotax RM-1 superkarts, providing an excellent platform for them to demonstrate their talents against their peers.
Former American Formula One driver Danny Sullivan, who finished fifth in the 1983 Monaco Grand Prix will lead the panel of judges that will then decide which drivers go through to the semi-final round, one step closer to winning a full Red Bull racing scholarship worth over $500,000. Entrants will be judged on raw speed plus willingness to learn, composure, behaviour and fitness level.
The Driver Search programme aims to discover and support a driver who might seem to lack the knowledge and contacts required to embark on a career in racing. The aim of the scheme is to create a group of between three and six American drivers racing in a European Junior Formula, providing a perfect platform from which they can break into Formula One racing.