2017 Mazda Road to Indy Scholarship Shootout
December 9-10, 2017 at the Bondurant Main Track
Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, Chandler, Arizona
The 2017 Mazda Road to Indy Shootout is a two-day event that features championship-winning drivers from around the world, competing for a $200,000 scholarship including entry to the USF2000 Championship. This year’s competition will be hosted at the Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park on the Bondurant Main Track, formerly known as Firebird International Raceway.
Open-Wheels.com was happy to provide extensive coverage of the event, including driver spotlight articles, the full list of competitors and their home series, and a recap of the entire weekend documenting the technical and social aspects of the event. The Mazda Road to Indy Shootout is an important offseason competition to stay in-tune with as the world’s best developmental drivers converge on the United States for a chance to join the Mazda Road to Indy ladder. This could potentially lead them to the Verizon IndyCar Series in the future, further strengthening the pipeline of talent which is currently in place.
While there were 17 drivers on hand this weekend for the 2017 Mazda Road to Indy Scholarship Shootout, only one of them was destined for victory in the tense, compelling and authentic competition. For Keith Donegan, a driver from Dublin, Ireland, to be that driver was almost as astonishing to himself as it were the rest of those following the event.
Forming one of the more unique stories out of the group of competitors, Donegan is an unusual case. With wins at Silverstone and other noted circuits in Europe, the Irish driver was a fine prospect as a teenager. In the midst of budding success, he decided to take a three-year hiatus from motorsport to focus on his academic studies. Noting a decreasing opportunity for advancement and a joint decision with family, the choice was simple to make for the young talent. READ MORE
Driver Spotlight Series
Spencer Brockman, 17, Westport, Connecticut
In 2017, Brockman competed in Formula Atlantic, winning the FA Southeast Conference championship as well as the Hoosier Super Tour championship. His performances in Formula Atlantic caught the eye of Mazda Motorsports, who have invited Spencer to the 2017 Mazda Road to Indy Shootout using one of the two at-large selections in the 2017 shootout class. Read More
Matthew Cowley, 20, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom
After a couple trying years making an attempt to survive as a “dad and lad” team, Cowley got the opportunity to run for Team Pelfrey in the 2017 USAC F1600 Championship. Not only did he accumulate 17 podiums in the season, he won the points title and also stood at the top after the SCCA Runoffs had completed its Formula Ford competition in late September. Read More
Jamie Thorburn, 19, Duns, Scotland
A native of the same town the legendary Jim Clark grew up in, Thorburn is a rising talent in his own regards. A fourth-place finisher in the 2017 Formula Ford 1600 British Championship, Jamie drives for Cliff Dempsey Racing. He punched a ticket to the Mazda Road to Indy Shootout by winning the James Becketts Super Series Shootout at Silverstone. Read More