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The Team USA Scholarship is a scholarship program to allow American racing drivers to compete overseas. The competition selects young talents to compete in select auto events.

United States Team USA Scholarship
Team principal(s)Jeremy Shaw
Bryan Herta
John Hildebrand
Steve Horne
Doug Mockett[1]
Current seriesFormula Ford Festival
Walter Hayes Trophy
Mazda Road to Indy Shootout
Former seriesFormula Palmer Audi
EFDA Nations Cup
Formula 3
New Zealand Formula Ford
1998 EFDA Winter Series (Edwards)
1999 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series (Edwards)
2000 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series (Giebler)
2006 Formula Palmer Autumn Trophy(Cameron)
2008 Formula Ford Festival(Newgarden)
2008 Walter Hayes Trophy(Daly)
2009 Walter Hayes Trophy(De Phillippi)
2012 Walter Hayes Trophy(Nunez)
2016 Mazda Road to Indy Shootout (Askew)



Formula Ford Festival (part 1)Edit

Winner of the 1991 scholarship, Bryan Herta.

The event was launched late in the 1990 racing season. The Scholarship was set up with initial support from IndyCar Series team owner Rick Galles, gentleman racer and business owner Jonathan Holtzman and Ford Special Vehicle Operations.[2]

Canadian Formula Ford 2000 graduate Jimmy Vasser and USAC Sprint Car champion Jeff Gordon were selected to compete at the Formula Ford Festival. As Gordon had prior commitments in midget racing, so only Vasser made the trip to Brands Hatch. Vasser raced a Lanan 1604 chassis. The young American was involved in a crash with Steffan Nielsen in the heat race which ended is Festival.[3] The following year the Scholarship again partnered with Lanan Racing, now racing a Reynard chassis.[4] Herta qualified for the final race in 15th place and worked his way up to eleventh place.[5] For 1992 two drivers were chosen to compete, Tony Ave and Ashton Lewis. The racers were selected after a test session at Snetterton.[6] Primus Racing/John Village Automotive entered three Van Diemen RF92 chassis. Two were driven by Ave and Lewis, a third was driven by Geoff Boss as a guest driver.[7] Boss was the fastest American driver qualifying fourth, but as his car did not pass technical inspection he had to start from the back of the grid.[8] Lewis was the best Team USA Scholarship driver in the 1992 Formula Ford Festival finishing fifteenth. Boss was unable to advance after starting last in his heat race. Ave collided with John Oxborrow in his heat race and failed to finish.[9] Jerry Nadeau was the sole driver selected for the Team USA Scholarship for 1993. The North Carolina native qualified on pole position for his heat race, winning the race in his year old Van Diemen RF92. He won the race with an advantage of over 26 seconds over Jan Neumann.[10] AFter a second place in the semi-final race, Nadeau started the final in third. Racing with other young talents such as Craig Lowndes and Jan Erik Löfgren Nadeau had to settle for fourth place.[11] Mike Borkwoski and Clay Collier were selected to race in the Formula Ford Festival Zetec class. The Festival was unsuccessful for both drivers with neither progressing into the final race.[12]

International F3 TrophyEdit

For 1995 Team USA Scholarship had an agreement with Dick Bennetts, team owner of West Surrey Racing to field a Mugen-Honda powered Dallara F395 for a selected driver in the International Formula 3 Trophy. The race was run at Donington Park on 22 October 1995.[13] Memo Gidley was selected and qualified the car in 16th position. Gidley finished the race in eleventh place after lengthy battles with Marc Cramer and Thomas Schwister.[14] Owen McAuley won the race with Jason Elliott and Scott Lakin completing the podium.[15]

EFDA Nations CupEdit

With Formula 3 deemed to expensive, the Team USA Scholarship returned to more affordable racing. The EFDA Nations Cup was selected, being a one-make series all drivers raced equal material. The cars were Reynard Formula Opel Lotus single seaters. Tony Renna was selected out of six finalists.[16] Jerry Nadeau racing in the 1996 Eruopean Formula Opel Lotus championship, joined Renna in the Nations Cup event.[17] After two races the team placed second in the overall standings of the 1996 EFDA Nations Cup, scoring the silver medal.

The team returned to the Nations Cup in 1997 with Buddy Rice and Matt Sielsky.[18] Paul Edwards was selected as a third driver, racing in the Formula Ford Festival. Edwards started fifth in the Festival race and worked his way up to third. Unfortunately, a run in with Robert Lechner caused Edwards to retire. In the Nations Cup Rice and Sielsky struggled in qualifying with the setup and the team had to settle for fifth.[19]

In 1998 Team USA Scholarship supported Paul Edwards in the final three rounds of the Formula Opel Euroseries and the EFDA Formula Opel Lotus Winter Series. His best finish was a fifth place at the Nürburgring with a Team USA Scholarship supported Motaworld Racing entry.[20] In the Winter Series Edwards raced with Team Meritus. Edwards won at Donington Park and placed second at the Hockenheimring. Leading the championship into the final round, again at the Hockenheimring, Edwards won the championship by default as the final was canceled. Freezing winter conditions caused the organisation to abandon the final event. Edwards won the championship over other contenders such as Richard Lyons and Takuma Sato.[21]

Formula Palmer Audi (part 1)Edit

For 1999 Team USA Scholarship shifted focus to the Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series. A series set up by former Formula 1 driver Jonathan Palmer featuring one-make Van Diemen chassis powered by 1.8L Audi engines.[3] Three drivers were selected to compete, Paul Edwards, Andy Lally and Jeff Simmons were selected to compete.[22] Edwards won three out of four races (at Snetterton and Brands Hatch), with Paul Munn winning the fourth race. Edwards won the championship with an 8-point advantage.[23] Lally finished fifth, Simmons eighth.[24]

Phil Giebler and Joey Hand were selected for Team USA Scholarship for the 2000 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series.[25] Giebler scored three podiums and a win at Brands Hatch to claim the title. Hand scored a single podium finish, a second place at Snetterton, to settle for sixth in the championship.[26]

New Zealand Formula FordEdit

In November 2001 twelve drivers were selected for a shootout style event at the Jim Russell Racing Driver School. A.J. Allmendinger and Bryan Sellers were selected for the 2001 Team USA Scholarship.[27] Due to the relative inexperience with single seaters, Team USA Scholarship returned to Formula Ford, in New Zealand.[3] The duo raced a partial season, with successes. Sellers won two races, both at Timaru, and placed ninth in the series championship.[28] Sellers and Allmendinger placed second and third at the New Zealand Grand Prix, behind Fabian Coulthard.[29] For 2003, three drivers were selected for the six race New Zealand International Formula Ford Series. Joe D'Agostino, Charlie Kimball and Ryan Millen. Millen, who is of New Zealand ancestry, is the nephew of 1980 New Zealand Grand Prix winner Steve Millen.[30]


Year Event Winner Note
1990 Formula Ford Festival   Jimmy Vasser
1991   Bryan Herta
1992   Ashton Lewis
  Tony Ave
1993   Jerry Nadeau
1994   Mike Borkowski
  Clay Collier
1995 F3 International Trophy   Memo Gidley
1996 EFDA Nations Cup   Jerry Nadeau
  Tony Renna
1997   Matt Sielsky
  Buddy Rice
1998   Paul Edwards
1999 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series   Paul Edwards
  Andy Lally
  Jeff Simmons
Edwards won the 1999 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series
2000   Phil Giebler
  Joey Hand
Giebler won the 2000 Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series
2001 New Zealand Formula Ford   A.J. Allmendinger
  Bryan Sellers
2003   Joe D'Agostino
  Charlie Kimball
  Ryan Millen
2004   Slade Miller
2005   J.R. Hildebrand
2006 Formula Palmer Audi
Autumn Trophy
  Robert Podlesni
  Dane Cameron
Cameron won the 2006 Autumn Trophy
2007   Joel Miller
  Patrick Barrett
2008 Formula Ford Festival
Walter Hayes Trophy
  Josef Newgarden
  Conor Daly
Newgarden won the 2008 Formula Ford Festival (Kent class)
Daly won the 2008 Walter Hayes Trophy
2009   Brett Smrz
  Connor De Phillippi
De Phillippi won the 2009 Walter Hayes Trophy
2010   Felix Serralles
  Spencer Pigot
2011   Spencer Pigot
  Trent Hindman
  Neil Alberico
2012   Tristan Nunez
  Jack Mitchell, Jr.
  Matthew Brabham
Nunez won the 2012 Walter Hayes Trophy
2013   Neil Alberico
  Jake Eidson
  Joey Bickers
2014   Aaron Telitz
  Michai Stephens
2015   Michai Stephens
  Dakota Dickerson
2016 Formula Ford Festival
Walter Hayes Trophy
Mazda Road to Indy Shootout
  Oliver Askew
  Kyle Kirkwood
  Neil Verhagen
Askew won the 2016 Mazda Road to Indy Shootout
2017   Aaron Jeansonne
  Jonathan Kotyk

Representatives by state1Edit

No. State
18   California
11   Florida
4   Illinois
3   Colorado
2   Connecticut
  North Carolina
1   Louisiana
  New Jersey


^1 State as listed on the Team USA Scholarship website.[31]

Other finalistsEdit

Year Driver
1992 Greg Tracy[32]
1992 Chris Simmons[32]
1992 Geoff Boss[32]
1992 Ernest Sikes[32]
1996 Alex Barron[33]
1996 Derek Hill[33]
1996 Steve Knapp[33]
1996 Allen May[33]
1996 Bryan Selby[33]
1997 Jeff Shafer[18]
1997 Rocky Moran Jr.[18]
1997 Chris Menninga[18]
1997 Mikel Miller[18]
1999 Aaron Justus[22]
2000 Tom Dyer[25]
2000 Ryan Hunter-Reay[25]


  1. ^ "Management". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  2. ^ "Vasser For FF Festival". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c "History". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  4. ^ "Herta to Represent U.S. in World Cup". Team USA Scholarship. 1991-10-19. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  5. ^ "Interview -- Bryan Herta". Motorsport Magazine. 01-12-1991. Retrieved 7 November 2017. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  6. ^ "Ave and Lewis to Represent U.S. in Formula Ford Festival". Team USA Scholarship. 11-09-1992. Retrieved 7 November 2017. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  7. ^ "Team USA Impresses in Shakedown Test". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  8. ^ "Team USA Out of Luck in Qualifying". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  9. ^ "Lewis Finishes Fifth at Brands Hatch". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  10. ^ "Nadeau Scores Stunning Victory in Fastest Heat Race". Team USA Scholarship.
  11. ^ "Nadeau Claims Fighting Fourth in Thrilling Festival Finale". Team USA Scholarship.
  12. ^ "Team USA Shut out in Formula Ford Festival". Team USA Scholarship.
  13. ^ "Vasser, Herta Confirm Worth of Team USA Scholarship". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  14. ^ "Gidley Displays His Racecraft on F3 Debut". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  15. ^ "The month in Motor Sport". Motorsport Magazine. 2007-11-15.
  16. ^ "Tony Renna Wins 1996 Team USA Scholarship". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  17. ^ "Nadeau to Represent America in Nations Cup VII". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  18. ^ a b c d e "Rice, Sielsky Win 1997 Team USA Scholarships". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  19. ^ "Team USA Places Fifth; Edwards Stars in World Cup". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  20. ^ "Formula Opel Euroseries". The GEL Motorsport Information Page.
  21. ^ "Cancellation Ensures Edwards' Championship". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  22. ^ a b "Team USA Scholarship Expands to Three-Car Effort". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  23. ^ "Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series (1998-2008)". Motorsport Winners. 2017-11-15.
  24. ^ "Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series 1999 standings". 2017-11-15.
  25. ^ a b c d "Six Young Americans Selected for Scholarship Shootout". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  26. ^ "Formula Palmer Audi Winter Series 2000 standings". 2017-11-15.
  27. ^ "Allmendinger, Sellers Earn 2001 Team USA Scholarships". Team USA Scholarship. 2017-11-15.
  28. ^ "2001-02 Talley's Formula Ford Championship". 2017-11-15.
  29. ^ "P&O Nedlloyd New Zealand Grand Prix". Motorsport New Zealand. 2017-11-15. Archived from the original on 2002-02-25.
  30. ^ "Three American Youngsters Set To Contest New Zealand Formula Ford Series". Team USA Scholarship. 03-12-2017. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  31. ^ "Alumni". Team USA Scholarship. Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  32. ^ a b c d "Team USA Scholarship Hopefuls Try out in England". Team USA Scholarship. 1992-08-18. Retrieved 1992-08-18. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  33. ^ a b c d e "Seven 1996 Finalists Survive All-Star "Grilling"". Team USA Scholarship. 18-15-1996. Retrieved 08-11-2017. Check date values in: |access-date=, |date= (help)

External linksEdit