Motorsport Ireland Young Driver of The Year Jake Byrne won first time out in the MI/Sport Ireland Van Diemen FF1600 at Kirkistown in Northern Ireland yesterday.

Having just stepped into the car the previous week, Jake qualified on the front row of the grid, just 8 hundreths of a second away from pole position. In the race itself, he took the lead early on and eased away to take a dominant win, crossing the line over eight seconds ahead of his nearest challenger. In race two, with weather conditions worsening, Jake fell to fourth off the line, taking third from fellow Kildare driver James Roe at the hairpin, by which stage the leading duo had made a break.

Jake has a very busy week ahead as he travels to the UK to start his British National Championship assault at Oulton Park in Cheshire on Saturday, before returning to Ireland the following day to attend the “Safer Roads Exhibition” in Punchestown Events Centre as part of his recently announced role as Kildare Road Safety Ambassador.

Jake Byrne, Motorsport Ireland Young Driver of the Year/Kildare Road Safety Ambassador: “I am delighted to start my relationship with the new team with a win. The Van Diemen is a very different car to the Ray chassis I raced before. The team did a great job all weekend- I think we showed what we can do in race one. I am looking forward to next weekend, there is definitely more to come!”

Jake Byrne’s next race is at Oulton Park in Cheshire on Saturday April 9th.
Safer Roads Exhibition runs in Punchestown Exhibition Centre on Sunday April 10th
Images from Tom Maxwell