DER LINDE WINS ACADEMY AFRICA SELECTION
03 October 2013 | Article by: Motorsport SA
African driver beats challengers from across Africa to top regional
an intensive three days of tests and evaluations at the Gerotek
Vehicle Testing Facility, near Pretoria, South Africa's Kelvin
Van der Linde has earned selection to the FIA Institute's 2013/14
Young Driver Excellence Academy.
der Linde, 17, won his place on the fully-funded Academy programme
after demonstrating his ability not just on the track but also
in terms of fitness and understanding of safety and vehicle
were three judges on the selection panel – Kate Robson,
representing the FIA Institute, Norbert Filippits, representing
Academy training partner TTI, and Richard Leeke, representing
event host Motorsport South Africa. As soon as it was known
that Van der Linde was in consideration for the win, the South
African judge removed himself from the final selection procedure.
Van der Linde was the unanimous choice of the other two judges.
now has the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of previous
participants in the Academy who have gone on to drive in Formula
One and the World Rally Championship.
there were no losers in Africa, as each of the other young drivers,
who had been nominated by the national motor sport authorities
in their own countries, gained invaluable knowledge and experience
to help them in their careers.
der Linde said: "It's a big honour for myself, my country
and my continent to be able to go out and compete against the
elite of the world. It's a major step and I realise I've got
a lot of work ahead of me."
Miller, Chairman of Motorsport South Africa, which hosted the
event on behalf of the FIA Institute, added: "It was an
honour for Motorsport South Africa to host this event and my
thanks go out to the team that have put the event together.
Obviously, I'm also delighted that the judges chose Kelvin as
the winner but it is clear that all the drivers benefitted from
the final day of the selection event the 12 drivers were whittled
down to five, who competed in a shoot-out on track. They included
Cole Bond (Zimbabwe), Cristian Bouche (Mozambique), Tejas Hirani
(Kenya) and Mark Sternagel (Namibia).
the choice of Van der Linde as the regional winner was based
not only on the shoot-out result but on all-round skills displayed
over the three days. He now joins Lithuania's Ignas Gelzinis,
the winner of the European regional event, and Saudi Arabia's
Abdullah Bamogaddam, winner of the Middle East and Mediterranean
event, on the Academy programme. They in turn will join the
winners of the Americas and Asia Pacific selection events taking
place at the end of the month and three additional wild card
entries to form the eight of the Academy.
in December, the next Academy provides a fully-funded training
programme which aims to help drivers develop their motor sport
careers, whilst increasing safety skills and actively promoting
the principles of safety, fairness and responsibility on and
off the track.
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