- Priaulx inspires British F4 grid with driver coaching session at Snetterton.
- F1 teams taking keen interest in British F4 and its drivers according to Priaulx.
8 AUGUST, 2016 – Drivers in the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford returned from the summer break joined by none other than triple World Touring Car Champion and Ford GT World Endurance Championship star Andy Priaulx MBE at Snetterton.
Aside from a list of motorsport achievements almost as long as Snetterton’s Senna straight, Priaulx has been a coach to a number of drivers who have made it to F1 stardom such as Marcus Ericsson and Bruno Senna; so there was no better person to lead a driver coaching session with the 2016 British F4 cohort.
Priaulx’s masterclass acting as yet another fine example of how British F4 and Ford continues to provide the best learning and developmental opportunities for young motorsport talent.
His session covered a variety of topics; ranging from optimising performance both on and off the track to the importance of leading the team and pulling everyone together around you. All areas which the dedicated team of experts at Priaulx’s iZone Driver Performance facility encourage drivers to focus upon.
“I hope after meeting all the British F4 drivers I have been able to provide an insight into where they will go on to in their careers,” said Priaulx.
“It’s important to realise that Formula 1 teams are looking at British F4. That’s a really good accolade for the series and testament to where it is going.
“British F4 is affordable and offers a high level of competition which is what young drivers need.
“It is a brilliant starting point for youngsters. It’s on the TOCA package which is excellent and it’s a great series to graduate from.
“Drivers in British F4 are in one of the most high profile championships with Ford’s support and a host of major partners [such as Snap-On Business Solutions and Samsung].
“I think a series like British F4 which is supported by a major manufacturer like Ford is invaluable. You can build a relationship with the blue oval and it’s a big brand. There is a staircase of talent forming here at Ford with British F4, the GT programme and NASCAR.”
Priaulx was also keen to emphasise the increasingly important role played by fuel economy in motorsport with Ford’s EcoBoost technology at the forefront: “What we do is all about fuel economy. Optimising performance with good economy. So the more laps we can do on one tank of fuel and the quicker it takes to refill, the quicker we will be at the end of the race.
“The EcoBoost technology is amazing. The power that we are producing from that little V6 engine [in the Ford GT in the WEC and the 1.6 litre turbocharged unit in British F4] combined with the fuel economy and performance of the vehicles is unbelievable.
“Learning about this kind of technology in junior single-seaters with Ford in British F4 is great. Learning how it all works and how to optimise fuel burn is very interesting and as a driver it’s always very good to have a technical understanding of this.”
Priaulx also cast an eye on the future of his son Sebastian who is beginning to work his way up the motorsport ranks; currently making waves in the Ginetta Junior Championship with the JHR Developments team which also competes in the F4 British Championship.
“I would love Seb to join British F4”, said Priaulx. “He’s done really well in such a short space of time. British F4 is an absolute must for him and if I can find a way next year to bring him in I will do. I think he would be really quick. It would be such a great story with my strong relationship with Ford.
“Without wanting to put any pressure on him I think it would be a great opportunity. Every driver needs single-seater experience. It’s so important.”
The F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford title battle rolls on to Knockhill on 13/14 August as the season draws ever closer to its climax.