Junior Open Wheel Talent

News and Views on Drivers Chasing Open-Wheel Stardom

Trent Hindman, 15, and Danilo Estrela, 17, were announced as the winners of the 2010 Skip Barber Karting Scholarship Shootout today at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

Tristan Nunez (15) was awarded a half season in the 2011 National Championship. Stefan Rzadzinski (17) won a full regional scholarship for 2011. Kenton Koch (16), Scott Hargrove (15) and Kyle Kaiser (14) earned a half season of regional competition.

KARTS TO CARS: Karting scholarship winners were announced at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Dec. 6, 2010. From left, Scott Hargrove, Kyle Kaiser, Tristan Nunez, Danilo Estrela, Todd Snyder, Trent Hindman, Stefan Rzadzinski, Kenton Koch. Forty-four drivers attended the shootout.
(Photo: Kelly Brouillet/Skip Barber)

A couple thoughts…

  • As always, it’s great to see this shootout in place. The Skip Barber Karting Scholarship offers drivers a tremendous amount of seat time for a relatively low price. For those who walk away with scholarships, the event is even more valuable.
  • Last year, with Pigot and Serralles winning, it was good to be from Florida as both are Floridians. This year it would appear New Jersey is the state to live in. Hindman and Estrela — the top prize winners — are both from New Jersey.
  • The average age of scholarship winners this year is 15.57. Last year, the average age was 17.5 years.
  • Several of the award winners had a significant amount of previous experience in a Skip Barber car. Both Hindman and Estrela ran four National Championship races in 2010.  Nunez, Koch, Kaiser and Hindman all participated in the 2009 Karting Scholarship at Sebring.
  • Estrela also has European experience as the 15-year-old ran three races in the 2009 Formula Palmer Audi series. In addition, he ran a few Brazilian Touring Car events. I’m not sure where Estrela was karting this season, but I’d have to assume somewhere because the application for entry to the shootout specifically says, “Applicants must be actively and currently racing karts.” Update: Estrela ran two races in Brazil’s Center-West Cup Championship this year.
  • I’m glad I wasn’t a judge. There were so many talented drivers in attendance this past weekend. Prior to the event, I had picked a few drivers that I thought would exit with a scholarship — Not all of them did. It’s tough to leave an event like this without a prize, but those drivers need to use this experience to their advantage and realize that they aren’t leaving empty handed.
  • Congrats to everyone who participated.

Related Reading: Skip Barber Karting Scholarship

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