Formula Ford has been serving an important purpose in the world of motorsports for decades to this point as an entry-level, single-seat, open-wheel stepping stone of sorts for drivers wishing to one day become Formula One stars. Though it isn’t a one-make series, Formula Ford does utilize Blue Oval powerplants in most parts of the world, though in recent years, the series has become a bit stale and dated compared to its bigger league counterparts. As a result, organizers are currently planning to make some big changes over the next couple of years, according to SpeedCafe.
Motorsport Australia Director of Motorsport and Commercial Operations Michael Smith is currently working on this modernization of Formula Ford with a team that includes a number of stakeholders in the series. The goal is to develop a proper next-generation Formula Ford racer that’s safer and more modernized compared to the existing model, all while retaining the low-aero and low-grip nature that made it so popular in the first place.
While the next-gen Formula Ford racer – which is slated to arrive no later than 2027 – will still use a tubular chassis, it will also incorporate some of the safety upgrades as bigger league racers, such as a halo, crash structures, a driver headrest, and an extractable seat, to name just a few. However, current models will still be eligible to participate, albeit in a new three-tier class structure. In spite of these changes, organizers note that they expect only a slight price increase compared to the existing racer.
“Motorsport Australia is committed to working closely with Formula Ford Australia, as well as with teams and manufacturers ahead of the roll out of this new generation car. It’s important we get this right and provide a platform that will allow the category the best opportunity to thrive in a changing motorsport landscape,” Smith said. “We’re excited about the future of Formula Ford and its place as a pathway for junior development for the next generation of motorsport competitors.”