Irish teen Lucca Allen on the fast track to Formula One

Five races in this season’s F4 British Championship powered by Ford EcoBoost have whetted Lucca Allen’s appetite to make it to the top table of motor racing: Formula 1.

The 15-year-old son of celebrity chef Rachel Allen spoke about his dream at his mother’s restaurant, Rachel’s, in Washington Street, Cork, this week. His switch from karting to F4, the most high profile and competitive junior single-seater series, saw him join Falcon Racing in a bid to get some experience of the tracks for a full championship bid in 2018.

“It’s been a good experience getting those races. The hard work starts now,” said Allen. “I’ve signed with Driver Club Management (DMC) and we will be working hard to secure the sponsorship we need for next season.”

Head of Ford performance Europe, Macroom’s Gerard Quinn, spoke about the road to F1.

“It’s very tough to get there but we (Ford) try and help them as much as we can to aspire to that by turning them into accomplished drivers and being an ambassador for their sponsor, which is very important.”

Last week, Allen became the youngest driver to be signed by DCM for its 2018 line-up. In five races this year, he raced in the Challenge Cup category, but next year he is aiming to make a strong impression in the main series that will support the British Touring Car Championship. The series begins at Brands Hatch (April 7/8) on the Indy circuit and finishes at the same venue, albeit on the GP circuit.

One of the most coveted awards in Irish motorsport, the Billy Coleman Young Rally Driver of the Year award, rests between three drivers, Callum Devine (Claudy, Co Derry), Kevin Eves (Pettigo, Co Donegal) and Jonny Treanor (Scotstown, Co Monaghan) following an announcement from Motorsport Ireland.

Devine, 23, won this year’s Junior British Rally Championship; Eves, 26, netted the Clonakilty Blackpudding Irish Tarmac Rally Modified category and Treanor, 23, finished second overall in the Triton Showers and Border Rally Championships.

Although eight candidates were short-listed — with Devine’s inclusion courtesy of the “wildcard entry” — nominee Gary Kiernan declined to attend Tuesday’s interview. The Cavan driver, winner of the Imokilly Rally and last week’s Kerry Winter Rally, stated that he didn’t fancy the prospect of leaving again with nothing, having failed to make the final three in each of his previous interviews. The Coleman award winner will be announced at the Beta Irish Motorsport awards ceremony on December 5.

This weekend’s Rally Australia concludes the World Rally Championship. While Sebastien Ogier (Ford Fiesta WRC) has won the title and M-Sport have taken the manufacturer’s series, Ogier has still to decide his future, despite an M-Sport offer being on the table for some time.

The Irish duo of Kris Meeke and Craig Breen, who are part of a three-driver Citroen team, will be eager to end the season on a high.


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