British-born Bahraini racer Menasheh Idafar is delighted to confirm he has signed a deal with leading single-seater squad Hillspeed to contest the 2009 Formula Renault UK Championship – the teenager’s second full season with Richard Ollerenshaw’s team.
Having competed with the Hathersage-based team in the club-level Formula Renault BARC Championship last year, Menasheh was a consistent front-runner and concluded the season a highly creditable fourth overall with five podium finishes.
Making the step-up to the full UK series in November during the 2008 Winter Championship, the 17-year-old is now preparing to face his biggest challenge to date with a full campaign in Formula Renault UK, a championship which has spawned drivers such as reigning Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton MBE and 2007 F1 title winner Kimi Raikkonen.
Menasheh said: “I’m really looking forward to racing in Formula Renault UK this year and it’s great to be continuing with Richard (Ollerenshaw) and the guys at Hillspeed. I can’t wait for pre-season testing to begin now, it’ll be very important to prepare well as the championship is going to be very tough.”
Since his competitive Formula Renault UK debut back in November, Menasheh has tested a Eurocup specification Formula Renault car with Spanish squad Epsilon Euskadi. He also ran in a National Class Formula 3 car with title winning team Carlin Motorsport last year before electing to graduate to Formula Renault UK in 2009.
The Formula Renault UK Championship, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, will commence on 4th/5th April at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit in Kent as support to the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship.
Comprising 20 races, which are contested over 10 weekends, the category will remain on the BTCC package for a total of nine events with one stand-alone race meeting taking place on 4th/5th July, at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit in Northamptonshire, as support to the World Series by Renault Championship.