Junior Open Wheel Talent

News and Views on Drivers Chasing Open-Wheel Stardom

Who's Going to Step Up and Help Today's Drivers?

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted February 2, 2010 at 10:57 am open wheel racing news

The 2010 racing season is just over a month away with the first Skip Barber National race scheduled to take place on March 5th, 2010 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.  Most of the other junior formula series in North America start their season later in March or early April.  It’s hard to believe that we are about 1-2 months away from a full-on racing season in North America.  One would expect most drivers and teams to have their 2010 plans in order with the season being just around the corner, unfortunately this just isn’t the case.

The lack of roster updates for 2010 isn’t due to a lack of effort by drivers.  For those of you on Twitter…. you know exactly what I mean.  Drivers are doing their best to utilize the various social media outlets to aide their quest of getting back behind-the-wheel in 2010. Those of us who follow them hear a lot of the gory details about the day’s workout and the distress of a sponsor search gone bad.  Despite the financial barricade holding them back they all seem to embrace a somewhat sanguine mindset.  And so do I.

I fully expect the number of roster announcements to increase this month.  Coming up with the necessary funds to compete at this level is difficult at best during times of inflation and expansion.  So, it goes without saying, the current economic climate makes the task of putting together a full program for 2010 exceptionally difficult.  Let’s just hope that those—who are in the position to do so— step up and help these talented drivers out.

If you look at the latest EFCN Driver Rankings (from October 23rd, 2009), you will see that (to-date) only 4 drivers out of the top-20 have officially signed with a team for the 2010 season.  That means 80% of the drivers ranked inside the top-20 are currently without a ride for 2010.  I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that’s a pretty scary statistic, especially when you consider that the 2010 season is just over a month away.

Let’s just hope others recognize this situation.  We need those people who are in a position to do some good for the racing community to step up and lend a hand.  Their assistance is vital to the success of our beloved sport.



  1. JimmyT on February 2, 2010 11:04 am

    I can’t help but reply here. Who is gonig to step up and help younger drivers and more importantly.. why ? What’s in it for them (a sponsor, for example?), the ROI is about negative ten trillion!

  2. Market My Driver on February 2, 2010 9:33 pm

    Somewhere, somehow, and sometime these people that profess to love the sport of auto racing and are today successful because of it; where given a hand-up. I’m not talking about a hand-out or money for nothing. Anyone that is successful in life today will tell you yes, they worked hard to get where they are, but they can also tell you the time & place that someone helped them in a big way to get to where they are now. If your in a position to help a young talented up incoming driver, then I encourage you to think about how you got to be in the position your in today and remember that someone was there to help you along your journey & now is your chance to do the same.
    Market My Driver

  3. ingo on February 3, 2010 1:16 am

    Yes and I cannot help either to comment…. today – most of the Drivers are a collective bunch of beggars and dreamers! Hold on you say? Well – you can give most of them all what you have as a team and get ZERO in return if you discount the trouble, arguments from racing daddies or mommies who know everything better, or even worst – from so-called industry professionals – the dear coach who could not get into the big time and now teaches the young kid to blame the teams for all their misfortunes or inability to win.
    I am not bitter or disillusioned – no I am a realist and finally see where all this is going to – the sponsors, now a rare breed, are being the next ones to be blamed on the misfortune of motorsport.

    Come folks – it’s time to realize that there are only a real few raw talents out there – the rest is, what we called it in the better days, fillers! Naturally there are also the organizers at fault – too many race series for very few drivers and I salute FBMW to pull out of “The Americas”; rather then filling drivers in the then left over Junior series like FV, FF, F2000 etc – oh no – another series got off the ground to fill the…WHAT? void! Bernie’s and Max’ ideas to compete with each other is another nail in the coffin of the other lesser published/cheaper series, be it in Asia, here or in Europe!
    Ah…I can hear the knives flying….but be careful and educate yourself first before shooting the messenger – we as a team have always found sponsors for our drivers – not to pay all the season cost but 30 to 40% – and all the drivers had to do was to say “thank you”. Even that we had to pull out from some of the spoiled and with overinflated ego’s drivers. But as true motorheads we don’t give up and stay truth to our conviction – so we have also this year again found sponsors for the driver/team. Glory glory….

Write a Comment

Junior Open Wheel Talent Blog

Promote Your Page Too