|press release||23 December 2016|
The AWC Motorsport Academy will back bigger and better in 2017 with several major announcements about next year’s plans. After a successful first year in 2016 the team, and the concept behind it has been refined and will build on the lessons and experiences gained so far.
The biggest news is that the whole operation will be based, and run from Tasmania. A custom built race transporter has been acquired and is in the final stages of its preparation thanks to some great work from Ashley Seward Motorsport . This will provide the ability to transport the infrastructure required to be self-sufficient along with up to seven race karts. Basing the operation from Tasmania wouldn’t have been possible without the much appreciated support from Robert Miller and team partner SRT Logistics.
Thanks to a strengthened relationship with DPE Kart Technology the team will campaign both the Kosmic, and the locally manufactured Arrow chassis. Supply and back up support for which will be provided by Tasmanian DPE distributor Launceston Kart Supplies. The team will again be taking things up a notch in the presentation stakes with the new race suit design being provided by ORG Australia and the transporter livery provided by Signpoint likely to turn more than a few heads.
Above: Team pic (L-R) - Toby Callow, Chris Schofield, Zane Wyatt, Lochie Dalton, Michael Dalton, Nathan Zuj, Jackson Callow, Martin Bellars, Andrew Walter, Johnathan males, Fletcher Bellars.
A significant addition to the team will be that of Chris Schofield. Chris joins the team in an advisory role and head of driver training and preparation. Regarded as one of the best mechanics in the business the Tasmanian born and bred second generation karter is keen to propel the team forward and get some good results. Andrew Walter speaking about Chris joining the team said “I really wanted to provide our drivers with the best training and support on and off the track and to this end I’ve managed to secure the services of Chris Schofield. I’ve seen Chris grow up and go on to achieve some pretty great things in the sport and I’m really excited to have him join us for next year. It’s great to have such a talented and experienced person involved with our program and it really typifies what the whole program is about. Chris is Tasmanian born and bred and I know he sees this as an opportunity to impart some of the knowledge he’s gained competing at the highest level for many years and hopefully it gives a boost to the drivers here in Tasmania”.
Seven drivers have been selected to represent the Academy at the Australian Karting Championship.
Toby Callow will move up to the Cadet 12 class after a strong 2016 season that saw him take home the blue plate in Cadet 9 at the recent Tasmanian State Championships. He will represent Launceston Kart Supplies aboard his Arrow Kart.
Fletcher Bellars will be competing in the KA4 Junior class after progressing from the Cadet 12 class. 2017 will be a learning year for this young man but don’t be surprised if he exceeds expectations. He will represent JDM Storage aboard his Arrow Kart.
Ethan Wyllie gets another shot at competing at the National Series after missing the 2016 season. He too is a recent graduate to the KA4 Junior class but brings a wealth of experience, courage and determination to the team. He will represent Andrew Walter Constructions aboard his Deadly Kart.
Lochie Dalton returns for a second year and steps up to the KA2 Junior class. This will be one driver to watch as the faster the class the better he seems to go. He will represent the Ian Harrington Group aboard his Kosmic Kart.
Jackson Callow is another driver to have another opportunity to represent the academy and he moves to seniors and the ultra-competitive KA3 Senior class. Although he will be one of the youngest in his class he should perform strongly after winning a State Title in only his second Senior appearance. He will represent William Adams CAT aboard his Kosmic Kart.
Nathan Zuj will once again fly the flag in the X30 class and is looking forward to the return to a higher grip tyre that suits his driving style. He will represent Hazell Bros aboard his Kosmic Kart.
After spending the 2016 season on the tools Zane Wyatt returns to the driver’s seat next season. He brings a wealth of experience to the team and after recent strong performances will be keen to show he still has what it takes. He will represent SRT Logistics aboard his Kosmic Kart.
Not only will the Academy be competing at the AKC but there are also some exciting initiatives in the pipeline. Team Director, Johnathan Males said “We are also looking at providing assistance to other Tasmanian competitors to help hone their skills outside of Tasmania. We are currently evaluating the possibilities of competing at another five events and these spots will be filled by drivers other than our AKC representatives. All these positions are currently being evaluated and we will hopefully be making some announcements shortly”.
Another initiative the Academy is keen to progress is driver training days. “If this project is to be successful we need to look to the future and help those just starting out, this will help us identify future talent that can be progressed through our program and will help boost the level of competition within the state”.
“We are also actively looking into charity fund raising initiatives, a lot like what we were able to achieve this year with Ronald McDonald House. To be able to hand over a cheque for nearly $1000 was a great achievement and there’s a few ideas in the pipeline for something again in 2017”.
2017 Team partners include: