Michael O’Brien will join Mark Godwin Racing (MGR) for a full 2015 campaign in the Duo BRDC Formula 4 Championship. O’Brien graduates to BRDC F4 after stints racing in Historic Formula Ford and the Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain in 2014.
The 20-year-old had no experience of motor racing prior to last season but showed great potential as he took victories on both Grand Prix tracks at Silverstone and Brands Hatch in Historic Formula Ford before sacrificing his championship lead to move into the Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain. He claimed a top five placing on his debut at Snetterton and ended the year with a highest overall finish of fourth in addition to taking a podium in the scholarship class at every round he entered.
O’Brien, who lives in Helmdon near Silverstone, was a British number one Downhill mountain biker, competing in events across the country, before he made the switch to single-seater racing last year. He comes from a family with a strong racing pedigree as his father Mike enjoyed a successful racing career through the late 1970s and 1980s, including a victory in the British Touring Car Championship. With his Speedsport team, he took drivers including Darren Manning to Formula Three successes and has helped his son Michael to take his first racing steps in 2014.
He will race alongside MGR’s other driver, Argentine racer Hernan Fallas.
Michael O’Brien commented: “I feel extremely honoured to join a series as prestigious as the Duo BRDC Formula 4 Championship. It is the perfect place for me as it offers fantastic media exposure and great support to enable me to advance my career. I have been very impressed with the car and the level of help we have received. We won’t have had much time in the car ahead of Oulton Park but we are confident we can make a good start to the championship and challenge for the title.”
MGR Team Principal Mark Godwin added: “I’m really pleased to have finally agreed a deal with Michael, as we have been looking to run him from as far back as the beginning of last year. Despite having limited time in the car so far, I expect Michael to be at the sharp end quite quickly as he showed competitive form in the Formula Ford races he did last year. I’ve known Michael’s father for a number of years and I know the way he works so I am sure it will prove to be a successful partnership for all concerned.”