25 February, 2015 – McLaren Autosport Award finalist and Formula Kart Stars ‘Old Boy’ Sennan Fielding is to switch to Ford turbo power for the coming season. The 19-year-old will race with the JHR Developments team at the wheel of one of its EcoBoost-engined MSA Formula cars.
The Dronfield-based team will run two cars in the Ford-backed championship, and 19-year-old Fielding, from Chesterfield, is the first of its drivers to be confirmed. Sennan raced for the squad in 2012, his maiden season car racing, when he netted runner-up spot in the Ginetta Junior Championship.
Says Fielding: “We were evaluating a few different avenues for this year to move my career forward, and while I had options in GT racing too, I was keen to remain in single-seaters and to get some more experience under my belt. When JHR approached us about racing in MSA Formula, it was immediately of interest because it’s a new championship with a lot of potential and the right people behind it. The BTCC support package is clearly the place to be as a young British driver; it’s a superb shop window and offers unrivalled exposure, with more than 20 million people tuning in live on ITV4 – and that in turn makes it easier to attract sponsors.”
JHR team principal Steven Hunter added: “I’m absolutely delighted to have Sennan back with us at JHR. We enjoyed a lot of success together in 2012, and watched him grow and progress in single-seaters last year – so when the opportunity arose for us to work together again, we were keen to see if we could help Sennan stay in single-seaters in 2015. He is not only an extremely gifted driver but also a great guy out of the car with an impeccable work ethic, and I have no doubt that his experience and ability will play a key role in helping us to develop JHR’s budding single-seater arm.
“MSA Formula is an exciting new championship, and single-seaters are an exciting new challenge for us – and we couldn’t have a better driver on board than Sennan as we target consistently strong results over the 2015 campaign.”
Fielding was honoured as the Racing Steps Foundation MSA Young Driver of the Year in 2013 and last season he competed in the BRDC’s single-seater series, claiming fourth overall with four race wins. Those results led to his selection as one of the six finalists for the prestigious McLaren Autosport BRDC Award.
JHR Developments is one of the most successful teams in junior British motorsport, having claimed eight championship titles since its foundation in 1995 as well as the honour of having been the first team to win a race in every support series on the BTCC bill.
MSA Formula – Certified by FIA, Powered by Ford EcoBoost is Britain’s official version of the FIA’s Formula 4 concept and will be the British Touring Car Championship’s single-seater support series, enjoying live TV coverage and bumper raceday spectator attendance. The championship will be decided over 30 races; three at each of the 10 BTCC meetings to be held between April and October.
The motive power for the MSA Formula chassis is the 1.6-litre DI turbocharged EcoBoost – a mainstay of Ford’s performance car range. It is a 160 PS development of the unit which successfully powered Formula Ford in Britain between 2012 and ’14, designed and manufactured by Ford in Britain and supplied at a price to meet the FIA’s mandated price cap.