Stephens, Telitz chosen to represent Team USA Scholarship in England
Braselton, GA. (September 29, 2014) – Aaron Telitz and Michai Stephens emerged as this year’s TEAM USA Scholarship winners. Vying against a very talented group of Skip Barber Racing School alumni, Telitz and Stephens competed in an extensive shootout and stood victorious. Both will travel to Europe later in the Fall to represent the 2014 Team USA Scholarship in the traditional Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch on Oct. 25-26 and Walter Hayes Trophy at Silverstone on Nov. 1-2.
The Team USA Scholarship has an impressive 20-plus-year record of selecting the most talented drivers in the United States, many of whom have gone on to successful professional racing careers. Stephens will follow in the footsteps of an illustrious group of former scholarship winners including Bryan Herta, A.J. Allmendinger, J.R. Hildebrand, Conor Daly, Josef Newgarden and Spencer Pigot. All of whom are Skip Barber Racing School alumni.
“The Skip Barber Racing School team is ecstatic about the TEAM USA Scholarship selection of Aaron Telitz and Michai Stephens to represent our country on the world stage,” said Skip Barber CEO Michael Culver. “Skip Barber sees the very best talent in open wheel racing and Telitz and Stephens are no exception. The two came from different backgrounds. Telitz came to us through his experience in Karting and Stephens came to us with no experience in motorsports, but within a year in our system, both racers are now champions. All of us at Skip Barber Racing School wish them the very best. They will do justice to American motorsports!”
Michai Stephens, pictured here with his father (right) during the 2014 Summer Series Race Weekend at NOLA Motorsports Park, won the INDYCAR Academy in 2013.
Stephens began his motorsports career in 2012 by participating in the first Skip Barber INDYCAR Academy shootout held in Sebring, Florida. The Skip Barber INDYCAR Academy is designed to provide aspiring racers without prior racing experience the opportunity to launch a career in motorsports. In the Academy, drivers are tested in equally-prepared cars on a demanding circuit. Racers applied for the Academy after graduating from a three-day Skip Barber Formula Car Racing School and are required to follow that training with an Advanced Two Day Racing School. Past participants included students, U.S. military personnel, salesmen, doctors and Olympic gold medalists.
In 2012 INDYCAR Academy, Stephens finished fourth. Determined to make his dream happen, Stephens shook his defeat off and decided to restart the process. In 2013, he took another 3-Day Racing School and enrolled in the 2013 Indycar Academy Shootout. This time, Stephens emerged as the champion. Michai garnered the fastest lap time and lowest average time in six of the eight sessions to earn a sponsored ride in the Skip Barber formula race series in 2014. Stephen’s success is a testament to Skip Barber’s system of providing talented drivers an opportunity to pursue their racing dreams regardless of finances.
“If I had to pick one thing or moment that stood above the rest,” said Stephens recalling his first time in a Skip Barber race car, “I would have to say was the pure enjoyment of being able to live out my dream.”
Michai’s scholarship winnings allowed him to participate in the 2014 Skip Barber Summer Series. He is now in championship contention in the series, with only 9 points separating him and 2013 Karts to Cars Scholarship winner Australian Luke Gabin. The series only has two race weekends left before the champion will be crowned.
Aaron Telitz, pictured here with Skip Barber Racing School CEO Michael Culver (left) and Race Series Director Keith Dalton (left) wins the 2013 Skip Barber Race Series Championship Shootout.
Telitz echoes Michai’s determination winning the 2013 Skip Barber Race Series Championship Shootout after coming back from placing 3rd place in the 2012 Championship Shootout and a 2nd place finish in the 2012-13 Winter Series.
The selection of these two exceptional racers is another testament that Skip Barber Racing School’s tried -and-true system works.
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About Skip Barber Racing School
For 40 years, Skip Barber Racing School has been the leader in training motorsports legends of the future through entry-level, equal car championships. The athletes are given media exposure, expert coaching, on-track arrive-and-drive experience, financial awards and motorsports scholarships. Skip Barber Racing School launched the auto racing careers of Juan Pablo Montoya, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, Scott Speed, A.J. Allmendinger, Raphael Matos, John Edwards, Conor Daly, Josef Newgarden, Spencer Pigot and many more.