Posted on Tue 1st Oct, 2013 in: Previous Winners
Aspiring racing driver Ashley White has been given the opportunity of a lifetime after beating off stiff competition from 200 hopefuls to secure the 2013 want2race crown and earn himself a fully funded drive in the final round of the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge at Donington Park on October 5/6.
Held at Blyton Park on 4 / 5 / 6 September, the 20 year old former two stroke karter from Northampton shone over
three intensive days of circuit driving, race simulators and interviews and, after being crowned the winner, White said; “I’m so happy, and it will take a while to sink in. I’ve only ever raced karts, and had so much bad luck we decided not to renew my license this year and stop racing. I then saw this opportunity with Ginetta and went for it, so pleased that I did now”.
want2race - now in its third year - aims to transform a racing novice or enthusiast into a fully-fledged racing driver through a series of steps, which begins with ‘qualifying’ sessions at a local kart track. Of the 200 entrants from across the UK, 100 of those were invited to Blyton Park to test their mettle in a Ginetta sports car.
The finalists were put through their paces with by current BTCC drivers Jack Goff and Adam Morgan, along with KX Akademy Ginetta G55 racer Rob Boston and recently crowned Ginetta G20 Champion Stuart Pearson, whilst also coming under close scrutiny from chief judge and historic racer, Mark Hales.
During Friday’s final, 150+ race win veteran Hales sat beside the top three as they pushed the G40 racer to the limit in a bid for success, Hales commented; “The decision was so tight at the end as all three performed so well under the pressure of two hot laps. Ashley put in a blistering performance and lap time which myself and the other judges could not argue with.”
He continued; “From what I have seen today this competition has brought together a selection of inexperienced yet talented drivers and offered them a fabulous experience and grounding to progress further in Motorsport. I wish Ashley the best for his race debut in a few weeks’ time.”
As part of the prize, Ginetta are providing the G40 car to be raced at the final round of the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge at Donington Park in October as well as race and test fees, insurance, team support and driver tuition, insurance and all the kit required to go racing – a package worth in excess of £6,000.
Lawrence Tomlinson, Chairman of Ginetta said; “Ginetta are committed to providing legitimate routes into motorsport for all ages and abilities. Having already established the Ginetta Junior Scholarship aimed at 14 – 17 year olds, as well as the Ginetta Racing Drivers Club for drivers who want a road-worthy track car, want2race provides an opportunity for all of those in-between, and we were delighted to be a part of it for 2013.”
want2race is organised and run by current Ginetta racer Ben Hyland, who set up the competition when he saw the barriers new drivers faced when wanting to make the jump into racing cars from participating in karts on track days in cars.
Hyland explains; “There are so many barriers when trying to start racing, and I want to provide the best experience and tuition at our race days along with the chance of becoming a real racing driver. It’s a unique and cost effective opportunity and this year the standard of drivers has been superb, making our lives as judges very hard at the end there! Ashley showed enormous raw talent, and I’m excited to see him out on the grid with us in just a few weeks’ time.”
White qualified at Whilton Mill kart circuit in Daventry, and after racing there a number of times, he was confident to reach the second phase. Whilton Mill Manager, Graeme Smith, was pleased to hear one of his drivers had won overall; “Congratulations to Ashley, he is a very quick driver and I’m pleased to hear that not only has he won, but Whilton Mill have proved once again it’s a tough circuit that breeds fast drivers & future champions. We look forward to seeing Ash making the step up from karts to cars and wish him all the luck.”