Karting champion Matthew Parry has been signed up to head Fluid Motorsport Developments and Van Diemen's assault on the 2011 Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain and the new Formula Ford EuroCup.
The 2009 Formula Kart Stars champion and 2010 Super 1 British Junior Rotax champion, is graduating to the single seater series for his first season in car racing, though is aiming to continue his success and win the championship at his first attempt.
Parry says: “I enjoyed the last four years in karting immensely, but felt it was time to move on, and I could not have asked for a better team with which to make the switch to single-seaters than Fluid. I am looking forward to playing a part in turning their fortunes around and repaying their faith in me as the year goes on.”
The 16 year old has signed for one year, with an option for a second year. Fluid owner Lindsay Allen commented on the move saying:
“Formula Ford is often a two-year programme, especially for drivers stepping up from karting, who have to learn the circuits as well as the cars. However, we recognise that someone of Matt's talents could do well enough in their first year to be able to move on.
“Although a Fluid Van Diemen won the Formula Ford Festival in 2010, we are still in the process of rebuilding after a couple of frustrating years and welcome the opportunity to have a driver of Matt's quality as a benchmark in our bid to return to winning ways. While the Festival success showed what the team is capable of, it has only served as a taster for what we hope to achieve in 2011.”
The Suffolk-based teenager was recently was recognised by leading racing publication Motorsport News in the publication's as the most promising track talent in the country in its annual 'Fast Fifty' list. It said that “Parry shone in British karting last year and has accrued one of the best records in the sport prior to his switch to cars,” and “He has shown glimpses of brilliance during his few testing miles with the Fluid Van Diemen squad…”
Parry, who has been accepted on to the Advanced Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence at Loughborough, added: “It's a great honour and a confidence boost to have been recognised by Motorsport News and it was a nice way to put a seal on my karting career. I don't think that it creates any extra pressure, although I certainly hope to be able to live up to the expectations.”