Cameron Shields is the latest sensation to come from Toowoomba, the same place as Indycar Champion, Will Power.
In fact Toowoomba seems to be a hub of Australian open wheel racing, with Jordan Lloyd, Will Brown and Shields all from the city and excelling. Too, Ben Gerserkowski was a F3 front runner and has taken his skills to the sportscar tracks of Europe.
It is a local connection that happens to run deeper than just seeing each other at the track now and then.
“Me and Will Brown have been racing against each other in Karts and we have always been good friends. I think that is where it started -always pushing each other to try and get each other to go that extra bit.
“Certainly from the start of the year i have improved a lot. At Sandown I was able to get away with taking take a podium place at the end and I have improved from there and I battle more with the front guys now”
“Even Bob Power [Will Power’s father] has been interested in how I have been going.”
For Sheilds, the 2016 Australian F3 season was his first in wings and slicks racing as he entered the National Class Championship with Gilmour Racing. Just don’t mind the fact that he is just 15 years old and can’t hold a drivers license in Australia as yet.
But Cameron has not let this inhibit him, taking to his Dallara F307 Mercedes Benz like a duck to water, outshining his National Class colleagues, and infact the Championship Class drivers needed to keep an eye our for him.
His pole position and win at Queensland Raceway suggested this.
“It was certainly pretty cool. It was unexpected to be fasted in every session and take the first race win.”
It could be argued that he had no right to win that race but he was also able to use the Queensland weekend to wrap up the National Class Championship.
He took out the Class Championship with two rounds of the 2016 Championship to go and there are already rumours that he could be sitting in an Championship Class car before the end of the year.
It might also give the other National Class runners a chance at a win, having taken the round win at each of the five tracks the series has visited this year.
“Certainly from the start of the year i have improved a lot. At Sandown I was able to get away with taking take a podium place at the end and I have improved from there and I battle more with the front guys now.”
And while he is only young, it is always good to know what ambition the drivers have. Some want to go to V8s, some aim for F1, some are just happy to race every now and then.
“F1 is the ultimate dream but whether or now we can get there is an unknown. There are obstacles to overcome to get there but wherever I can get to race – I would be more than happy to take that opportunity.”
And if he can get the right breaks, with the pace he has shown to date, he will have a great career ahead of him.
The Racerviews Info
By Sam Tickell, August 2016
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