The 10 contenders for this year’s Aston Martin Autosport BRDC Award have been named, with a prize of an Aston Martin Formula 1 test up for grabs.
The long-standing award is for young British drivers and “primarily competing in a category below FIA Formula 3 or be an FIA F3 rookie”, must be 16 by the time of the Award final in October and no older than 24 at the start of 2023.
A MotorSport Vision Formula 2 car, a GT3 car and a LMP3 prototype sportscar will be the cars used to test the four finalists at Silverstone aross two days in October, with the winner revealed two months later.
The judges “reserve the right to introduce a wild card for drivers excelling during the closing stages of the season” as several eligible series featuring British drivers do not actually conclude until late October.
This year’s longlist age spread is 16 to 20, and in addition to the F1 test there is a £200,000 cheque included in the prize package. Oldest of the 10 drivers is F1 Academy racer Abbi Pulling, and the 20-year-old is one of five drivers to be nominated for a second time.
Joining Pulling in being nominated for a second successive year is 19-year-old FIA F3 racer Taylor Barnard and 17-year-old GB3 points leader Callum Voisin, while returning to the longlist after appearing on it in 2021 are GB3 race-winners James Hedley and Matthew Rees.
British Formula 4 points leader William Macintyre, who only turned 16 a few days ago, is the youngest on the longlist.
The other four new names on the AMABA longlist are GB4 points leader and Formula Ford 1600 star Tom Mills, Italian F4 points leader Arvid Lindblad (who is British-Swedish), GB3 title contender Joseph Loake and British passport-holding New Zealander Louis Sharp who is fighting for the British F4 title.
Two of the 10 drivers hold F1 affiliations with rival teams to Aston Martin, as Pulling is an Alpine junior and Lindblad is in his third year as a Red Bull junior while only in his first full year of car racing.
British Racing Drivers’ Club vice-president Derek Warwick once again chairs the judges, and is joined by Formula E racer Alexander Sims, long-time Aston Martin driver Darren Turner, IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti, touring car icon Jason Plato, racer Andrew Kirkaldy, race car designer Mark Williams, engineer Leena Gade, commentator Ian Titchmarsh and Autosport magazine’s chief editor Kevin Turner.