CHAMPCAR/CART: Gold Coast "Young Guns" support race preview

Some of Australia's leading young motorsport stars will 'roll the dice' for a winner-take-all cheque of $10,000 in the Glllette Young Guns category at the Honda Indy 300 on the streets of the Gold Coast from October 25-28. All but one driver has ...

CHAMPCAR/CART: Gold Coast "Young Guns" support race preview

Some of Australia's leading young motorsport stars will 'roll the dice' for a winner-take-all cheque of $10,000 in the Glllette Young Guns category at the Honda Indy 300 on the streets of the Gold Coast from October 25-28.

All but one driver has been confirmed for the Gillette Young Guns contest which will see 10 drivers under the age of 25 go door-handle to door-handle in brand new and identical Honda Integra Type-Rs.

The first nine drivers include V8 Supercar drivers Dean Canto and Owen Kelly, GTP driver Luke Youlden, Formula 3 campaigners Peter Hackett and James Manderson, Formula Ford drivers Wil Power and Jamie Whincup and Karting stars Mark Winterbottom and Troy Hunt.

The final driver for the 10-car field and reserve will be voted through Network Ten's RPM program over the next three weeks.

The four drivers in the running for the final spot and a reserve's seat are Formula Ford driver Andrew Jones, GTP drivers Craig Dontas and Nathan Thomas and V8 co-driver Adam Macrow.

The category was initiated last year with the aim of supporting top young motorsport drivers in Australasia. The inaugural event was a tremendous success and the program has been able to continue with the support of Gillette and Honda, according to Honda Indy 300 Chief Executive Officer, Geoff Jones.

"I think the final list of drivers we have put together for this year's Gillette Young Guns is a terrific blend of talent from a wealth of categories," said Jones.

"The feedback we are getting indicates that the Gillette Young Guns is something that young drivers across Australia and New Zealand are now aspiring to."

"I think that this year's race will be one of the highlights of the Honda Indy 300."

Power, who lives in Toowoomba, was on hand at a special promotion for the Gillette Young Guns category at Conrad Jupiters casino on the Gold Coast today.

The 22 year-old has been one of the stars of this year's Australian Formula Ford Championship and had the opportunity to 'play' with $10,000 on one of Conrad Jupiters' roulette wheels,- the same amount he will have the chance to win in the Gillette Young Guns contest next month.

"To win the $10,000 would certainly be nice, but I think the doors that winning this event could open would be worth even more," said Power.

"I think the Gillette Young Guns concept is a great one and something the Honda Indy 300 organisation should be applauded for."

A highly credentialed selection panel was chosen to evaluate the many young hopefuls wanting to be involved in the event that offers a $10,000 first prize.

The selection panel comprised Paul Gover National Motoring Editor for News Ltd., Phil Branagan Editor of Motorsport News, Allan Edwards Editor of Auto Action, Veteran racer and Honda dealer Greg Crick and Honda Indy 300 Chairman, John Cowley.

Engineered for race-like performance, the Integra Type R is powered by a high-revving 2.0litre, four-cylinder I-VTEC engine, includes quick shifting six-speed manual gearbox, race-style chassis, limited slip differential and super rigid body.

Honda will make only minor modifications to the ten Integra Type Rs- around 30kg of parts, including the rear seat and spare wheel, will be removed to make way for a full roll cage and other safety equipment. The cars will be supplied by Honda dealers and built by Honda Australia with the support of

sponsors Faulken Tyres and Conrad Jupiters.

The Gillette Young Guns will have two practice sessions on the opening Thursday of the four-day meeting with official qualifying the following day. The young stars will then have a nationally televised race on both Saturday and Sunday.

-BAM-

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