Ecurie Ecosse launch young driver academy


Legendary racing team Ecurie Ecosse have announced the launch of a young driver initiative focussing on promoting and nurturing Scottish talent.

Now in their third full year of competition following the team’s relaunch in 2012, the Ecurie Ecosse Young Driver Initiative (EEYDI) – which has seen Sir Jackie Stewart, David Coulthard and Allan McNish – amongst others – go through the team’s ranks in their younger days.

Joining the programme this year are Ciaran Haggerty, who will be racing in BRDC F4, and Adam MacKay who will be racing in Scottish Formula Ford 1600.

For Haggerty the Scottish Formula Ford route is one that he has been down in the past, in 2013 he claimed the championship’s Newcomers Cup before winning the overall title last year. MacKay joined Haggerty on the grid in 2014 and also claimed the Newcomers Cup following a podium finish in every round.

The men will see their campaigns in their respective championships backed by the EEYDI ensuring they can keep on moving up the career ladder. To ensure this, MacKay and Haggerty will be supported by great names in Scottish motorsport including the above mentioned McNish as well as IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti.

Franchitti has personally supported Haggerty since 2013 after he noticed the 18-year-old donated his prize money to charity.

Franchitti said: “My involvement dates back to 2013 when I first met Ciaran at the SMRC dinner. He’d won the Hartley Whyte Trophy but instead of spending his prize money on racing he donated it to the Reverse Rett charity that Ryan Dalziel’s involved with. It was such an amazing gesture that I offered to help him, and it’s just snowballed from there with Ciaran dominating Scottish Formula Ford last season.

“The likes of Hugh McCaig [Ecurie Ecosse Team Principal], Graham Brunton [Scottish Motor Racing Club Competition Secretary] and Allan McNish have really driven it forward, which has culminated in the Ecurie Ecosse Young Driver Initiative. It’s been some time since there’s been a platform for nurturing young Scottish drivers but we’re hoping to change that. The talent is out there – just look at Ciaran and Adam – but without government support it’s down to individuals to make the difference.”

The drivers themselves are looking forward to it, and are hoping that the legendary support can push them harder than ever before.

Ciaran Haggerty said: “I’m honoured to be involved with an iconic Scottish team like Ecurie Ecosse. Dario and Ryan Dalziel have had such a significant impact on my career already so to have even more people behind me is fantastic. I know that stepping up to the BRDC Formula 4 championship will be a challenge but I’m excited to get stuck in and see what we can do!”
Adam MacKay added: “It is a huge opportunity to be involved with such a big name in motorsport and with so much heritage behind it. I’m really excited to do them proud! My main goal is to win the Scottish FF1600 Championship this year, and hopefully be in with a chance of some podiums at the away races. Not many people can say they’ve had this sort of chance so I’m looking forward to making the most of it.”