AUTOSPORT Awards McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC: Oliver Rowland
|By Jamie O'Leary||Sunday, December 4th 2011, 23:52 GMT|
Formula Renault UK runner-up Oliver Rowland has won a Formula 1 test with McLaren after being named as the 23rd winner of the McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award.
Rowland, who also gets £100,000, full membership of the BRDC, a TW Steel watch, Puma racewear for a year, was revealed as the winner at the AUTOSPORT Awards in London on Sunday night.
The 19-year-old Briton was presented with the Award by Derek Warwick, chairman of the Award judges, McLaren F1 team principal Martin Whitmarsh, and AUTOSPORT publishing director Peter Higham.
"I don't know what to say," Rowland explained. "It's been a difficult year for me. I lost someone very close to me in [karting guru] Martin Hines, who passed away this year. He's helped me for six or seven years.
"I've had lots to learn this year in my first year of Formula Renault. I have learned a lot and now I'm here. I just can't believe it."
Rowland beat Formula Renault UK champion Alex Lynn, German F3 Cup race-winner Tom Blomqvist, British Formula Ford champion Scott Malvern, ADAC Formel Master front-runner Emil Bernstorff and Formula Renault BARC champion Dino Zamparelli to the prize after a number of tests, including driving a Formula 2 machine, a HWA DTM Mercedes and a McLaren MP4-12C GT3 at Silverstone last month.
Former recipients of the award include 2009 F1 world champion Jenson Button, former grand prix winner David Coulthard and IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti.