FCC National Championships to be Decided at Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma August 24th-26th
Mazdaspeed Cash Awards, and the Opportunity to Become a Mazda Factory Sponsored Driver Part of the Event Prize Package.
June 12th, 2012
The Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear has decided to move the 2012 National Championship event to the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma this season.
"The past two years we have have 30+ cars at the Indy GP, as well as a great mix of all the FCC car classes, stated Series Official Ben Hettema. "We met with Mazda and both parties agreed that this was going to be the biggest FCC event of the year, and that it would make a lot of sense to make this our National Championship event."
Registration for the event is open to all FCC region competitors now. Top performers from every region are expected to attend the Indy GP of Sonoma, as they have in past seasons.
It was announced earlier in the season that Mazdaspeed would be offering $14,000 in cash contingency awards to Regional and National Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear drivers. FCC National Champions would also be eligible for the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development Driver ladder program.
The MAZDASPEED ladder has been a critical part of the success of up-and-coming racers including Raphael Matos, John Edwards, Conor Daly, Joel Miller, Connor De Phillippi, Dane Cameron, Jason Saini, Todd Lamb, Eric Foss, Michael Cooper, Trent Hindman, Danilo Estrella, Adam Christodoulou, Sage Karam, Spencer Pigot, Felix Serralles, Tristan Vautier, Petri Suvanto, and Scott Anderson. Last season Elliot Skeer was the Mazda Shootout winner. When told that he had won the shootout, a prize valued at $75,000, the richest in all of club racing Skeer noted, "Without this shootout and the MAZDASPEED ladder, the path to the top looks like a giant maze. This just changed my life and is helping me realize that it is possible to make my dream a reality and become a professional driver."
The criteria: Given that each of the finalists will have proven themselves on the track by winning a championship, the criteria to move up will be more encompassing. To succeed on the professional level requires a balance of both on-track and off-track skills including the following:
- Driving ability - fast and consistent laps
- Technical feedback - Understanding of vehicle dynamics and suspension, ability to evaluate vehicle handling, ability to analyze data, and the ability to improve vehicle handling
- The business of motorsports - Business proposal, presentation, and PR Skills
The judges: Each year Mazda invites a panel of outside judges to make the selection. The judges bring a wealth of both on-track, and off-track expertise. Over a dozen professionals are involved in either the preliminary business proposal review, on-track activities, or both.
The tally: After a full day of both driving, and classroom activities, the judges add the objective and subjective scores and discuss the merits of each driver.
The prize package: The total prize package is valued at over $75,000 and is the largest prize in club racing.
- $50,000 for the running of the car for the season
- $10,000 in parts support
- A MAZDASPEED driving suit and helmet
- Professional media training (Courtesy of MAZDASPEED)
- Ten sets of BFGoodrich tires, one set per race (Courtesy of BFGoodrich Tires)
- Ten entry fee waivers (Courtesy of SCCA Pro Racing)
Steve Sanders - MAZDASPEED Competition Manager: "Mazda enjoys a leadership position within the grassroots motorsports world. With leadership comes responsibility. We have chosen to promote outstanding club racers to the professional ranks as the best way to clearly demonstrate our commitment and responsibility to both our customers and the sport at large."
Ben Hettema- Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear Series Official: "Our series and drivers really appreciate that Mazda recognizes the FCC presented by Goodyear as being worthy of the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development Driver ladder program. We also really appreciate the amount of investment both in time and money that Mazda makes in the sport we all love. Many of our racers, mechanics, and officials drive Mazdas as their everyday vehicles and share their love of all things Mazda with fans and other event participants on a regular basis."
Mazda is the brand of choice for road-racers across North America. More than 9,000 grassroots racers compete in various classes with the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and the National Auto Sport Association (NASA). Racers who are years away from earning a driver's license can now begin a professional motorsports careers in the Mazda family. A driver can begin in karts and progress through a variety of diverse series ranging from the Skip Barber series, NASA and SCCA club racing, USF2000, Star Mazda, Continental Tire Challenge, up to Grand-Am GT and ALMS, all with Mazda.
No other car company has ever connected the dots this way. Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers. Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario; and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.
About The Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear:
The Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear is a regionalized open wheel racing series with an annual national championship. There are multiple regions across the country, and each region has unique features and events.
Once a year the regions meet for the FCC National Championships. The championship features a multi-class format -Formula Mazda (FM), Pro Formula Mazda (PFM), and the FormulaSPEED2.0 (FS2.0). All classes are powered by Mazda, and equipped with Goodyear Racing tires.
Each region is supported by a Region Promoter who is well versed in racing, and who can provide assistance to teams and independent drivers.
The series is partnered with Goodyear, Mazda USA, MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development, Red Line Oil, and NASA Pro Racing.