Australian Formula Ford Championship
|Category||Open Wheel Racing|
|Engine suppliers||1.6 litre Ford Duratec|
|Tyre suppliers||Avon Tyres|
|Drivers' champion||Richard Knight|
|Teams' champion||Stillwell Ford|
The Australian Formula Ford Series is an Australian motor racing competition for drivers of Formula Ford racing cars, held annually since 1970. From 1970 until 1992, and again from 2014, it has been a national series. From 1993 until 2013, the series was CAMS sanctioned and called the Australian Formula Ford Championship.
Australian Formula Ford is renowned for producing future champions in other categories with many V8 Supercar drivers and Australian international open-wheeler drivers having had a background in the category.
The Formula Ford category was established in Great Britain in 1967 and two years later Australia’s first Formula Ford race was staged at the Sandown circuit in Victoria. A national series was contested in Australia for the first time in 1970 and then annually through to 1992. In the following year the series was granted national title status by CAMS and officially became the Australian Formula Ford Championship. After having powered Australian Formula Fords since the introduction of the category, the 1600cc Ford “Kent” engine was replaced by the third-generation Ford Fiesta unit for the 2006 Australian Championship. The "Kent" powered cars continued to be raced in various State championships under the "Formula Ford 1600" category name.
The series has served as a stepping stone for many Australian racing drivers who have gone on to greater things in motor racing both in Australia and overseas. Notably, 1971 winner Larry Perkins went on to race in the Formula One World Championship and other winners Russell Ingall, Craig Lowndes, Garth Tander and Jamie Whincup have each gone on to claim V8 Supercar titles. Other graduates of Australian Formula Ford include Brad Jones, Marcos Ambrose, Tomas Mezera, Jason Bright, Steven Richards, David Besnard, Will and Alex Davison, and nine-time Formula One race winner Mark Webber finished third in the F1 World championship on three occasions.
Formula Ford has also proven a popular proving ground for Australian racing car manufacturers. In its early years the series was dominated by Australian designs from Elfin Sports Cars, Bowin Cars, Mawer and Birrana. 1987 to 1997 was dominated by the British marque Van Diemen, winning eleven straight titles. The streak was broken in 1998 by Australian marque Spectrum, built by Borland Racing Developments. Van Diemen faded in the mid-2000s and Australian grids are now almost exclusively filled with Spectrums and French made Mygales.
Once mainly the domain of competitor self-run teams, the modern series is dominated by professional racing teams. Sonic Motor Racing Services and Synergy Motorsport both field multi-car teams, while some of those and Spectrum works team Borland Racing Developments also compete in the Victorian Formula Ford championship.
Australian Formula Ford Series
In August 2013 the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport announced that the Australian Formula Ford Championship would be discontinued at the end of 2013. The Formula Ford Association subsequently announced that approval had been obtained from CAMS to organize a national series for 2014. It was contested over six rounds and was officially known as the Australian Formula Ford Series. “Kent” powered cars were re-introduced for the 2014 series.
During the 2016 season, the championship ran one event at a race meeting sanctioned by the Australian Auto Sport Alliance. [AASA]
In 2017, the Queensland round was run at a "RACERS' sanctioned race meeting.
For 2018 four of the seven rounds will be run at CAMS sanctioned race meetings, two at the AASA sanctioned "AMRS" series, and one at Queensland Raceway again.
Currently, the winner of the Australian Formula Ford Series is awarded a "golden ticket" to the INDYCAR Road to Indy Shootout, provided the driver is age-eligible per INDYCAR regulations. If the winner is ineligible (as was the case in 2016 because of age), the driver highest in points eligible for the award will claim the prize. The 2018 Australian Formula Ford winner won the Shootout, and was awarded a 2019 USF2000 ride fully funded by the promoters.
Formula Ford has also proved to be a very popular category for state level series and championships, including competitions held in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia. In the majority these championships continue to utilise the first-generation Ford Kent engine. State level series have served as a stepping stone for kart racers looking for a cheap entry level into circuit racing before moving into the national series. State series often provided addition cars to the national series.
Series winners and Australian Champions
|Season||Series name||Series winner||Car|
|1970||Formula Ford National Series||Richard Knight||Elfin 600 FF|
|1971||National Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Larry Perkins||Elfin 600 FF|
|1972||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Bob Skelton||Bowin P4A|
|1973||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||John Leffler||Bowin P4a & Bowin P6F|
|1974||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Terry Perkins||Elfin 620FF & Titan|
|1975||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Paul Bernasconi||Mawer 004|
|1976||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Richard Carter||Birrana F73|
|1977||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||John Smith||Bowin P4A|
|1978||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||John Wright||Bowin P4A|
|1979||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Russell Norden||Mawer 004|
|1980||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Stephen Brook||Lola T440|
|1981||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Phillip Revell||Lola T440|
|1982||TAA Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Jeff Summers||Elfin 620B|
|1983||Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Bruce Connolly||Galloway & Van Diemen|
|1984||Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Ron Barnacle||Royale RP31|
|1985||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Tomas Mezera||Reynard FF83  |
|1986||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Warwick Rooklyn||Elwyn 003|
|1987||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Peter Verheyen||Van Diemen RF86|
|1988||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||David Roberts||Van Diemen RF86|
|1989||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Mark Larkham||Van Diemen RF89|
|1990||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Russell Ingall||Van Diemen RF90|
|1991||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Troy Dunstan||Van Diemen RF91|
|1992||Motorcraft Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series||Cameron McConville||Van Diemen RF92|
Australian Formula Ford Championship
|1993||Craig Lowndes||Van Diemen RF93|
|1994||Steven Richards||Van Diemen RF94|
|1995||Jason Bright||Van Diemen RF95|
|1996||David Besnard||Van Diemen RF96|
|1997||Garth Tander||Van Diemen RF95|
|1998||Adam Macrow||Spectrum 06|
|1999||Greg Ritter||Mygale SJ98|
|2000||Luke Youlden||Mygale SJ2000|
|2001||Will Davison||Van Diemen RF01|
|2002||Jamie Whincup||Van Diemen RF01|
|2003||Neil McFadyen||Stealth Van Diemen RF94|
|2004||David Reynolds||Van Diemen RF04|
|2005||Daniel Elliott||Van Diemen RF05|
|2006||John Martin||Spectrum 011|
|2007||Tim Blanchard||Mygale SJ07A|
|2008||Paul Laskazeski||Spectrum 011b|
|2009||Nick Percat||Mygale SJ07A|
|2010||Chaz Mostert||Spectrum 012|
|2011||Cameron Waters||Mygale SJ10A|
|2012||Jack Le Brocq||Mygale SJ12A|
|2013||Anton de Pasquale||Mygale SJ13A|
Australian Formula Ford Series
|2014||Thomas Randle ||Mygale SJ13A|
|2015||Cameron Hill||Mygale SJ10a|
|2016||Leanne Tander||Mygale SJ10a|
|2017||Max Vidau||Mygale SJ1019|
|2018||Hunter McElrea||Mygale SJ010a|
- History Archived 13 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from www.formulaford.com.au on 25 September 2009
- CAMS Manual of Motor Sport > About CAMS > Australian Titles Archived 3 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from www.camsmanual.com.au on 25 September 2009
- What is Formula Ford Archived 22 November 2009 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from www.formulaford.com.au on 25 September 2009
- A quick Overview of Kent Formula Ford Archived 13 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from www.formulaford1600.com.au on 25 September 2009
- National Formula Ford Championship to be axed, Tuesday 27 August 2013, www.speedcafe.com Retrieved on 11 October 2013
- 2014 Formula Ford National Series is all go, 8 November 2013, formulaford.org.au Retrieved on 27 November 2013
- 2014 Australian Formula Ford Series Sporting Regulations, formulaford.org.au Retrieved on 28 April 2014
- Formula Future Locked, The Racing Magazine, Number 11, Australian Motor Racing Pty Ltd, page 6
- Records & Stats Archived 18 December 2006 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from www.formulaford.com.au on 26 September 2009
- Reynard Owners Listings Archived 17 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved on 24 August 2011
- 2014 AUSTRALIAN FORMULA FORD SERIES, formulaford.org.au, as archived at web.archive.org