2018 Season Drivers
05 - Marcus Armstrong - M2 Competition
City / Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Born: 29 July 2000
Team: M2 Competition
Amrstrong’s career began in karting in 2007 at the age of seven and ramped up sharply to win the cadet national title in 2011 and was second overall in the 100cc Junior Restricted class at the New Zealand School Nationals. In 2012 Armstrong was juggling study with motor racing both in New Zealand and the USA, and winning the Kiwi 100cc Junior Restricted title. In an impressive karting career spanning six years, Armstrong had amassed seven major category title wins and many podium finishes here and in the USA. He drove seven races of the inaugural Toyota Finance 86 Championship in 2013- 2014. Despite only contesting the second part of the season he finished eighth overall. Returning the following year, he raced the first three rounds, recording two outright wins and finishing seventh overall, winning the Rookie of the Year award. Armstrong topped his 86 career off with three races in the most recent championship, recording two podium finishes and one fastest lap. His racing gathered momentum this year, the 16-year-old competing in European and world championship events in the intensely competitive KZ classes. At the same time he began testing in a Formula Renault single-seater, then contested the penultimate round of the Formula Renault 2.0 NEC at the Nurburgring and at the final round for the British Formula 3 Championship. Though entered as a ‘wild card’ with the intention of simply gaining experience in single seaters, Armstrong was instantly competitive in fields of two dozen or more.
01 - Brendon Leitch - Victory Motor Racing
City / Location: Cromwell, New Zealand
Born: 28 November 1995
Team: Victory Motor Racing
Brendon was the most successful local driver in last season’s TRS championship, finishing third overall. He won the preliminary race at Manfeild and had three other podium finishes. In 2015, he won the feature race for the Spirit of a Nation Cup at his home track, Teretonga, having made his TRS debut the previous season. Like many drivers Leitch started his career in karting in 2005, moving into Formula Ford in 2011. In the 2012 National Championship he finished third and was runner-up the following year with three wins and 11 podium places. Unlike his rivals, Leitch has done virtually no racing over the New Zealand winter, apart from two days of F2000 testing at Indianapolis. If Leitch can up his pace and qualify nearer the front of the grid he could be a real threat to the international visitors, especially at the two South Island tracks which he knows so well.
07 - Reid Harker - Giles Motorsport
City / Location: Albany, Auckland, New Zealand
Born: 22 August 1995
Team: Giles Motorsport
Reid Harker is making his debut in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series this summer. From Albany on Auckland’s North Shore, Harker, has spent the last three seasons racing in the Toyota 86 Championship, culminating in the runner-up position last summer.
His motorsport career started in karting in 2009 at the age of 13. In the next five years he had a string of podium places at National Secondary School events and other race meetings, including winning the Formula Junior and Rotax Junior titles in 2011.
Over the summer of 2013-14 he made his debut in both the BMW E30 one make series and some Formula First races. The following season Harker concentrated on the BMW championship, finishing fourth and also took in a couple of Toyota 86 races. Harker finished seventh in the Toyota series in 2015/16
Last summer, seven victories and 12 podium positions in the 18 race series took him to runner-up in the 86 series. Harker has tested both the current FT50 car used for the Castrol Toyota Racing Series, as well as the older model FT40.
Harker is the first driver to step directly from the one-make 86 sports coupe series into TRS. “I enjoy the high level of competition single-make racing offers and the Toyota Racing Series is a great opportunity to compete amongst the best up and coming drivers. I strongly believe this is the next best step to grow as a driver before heading overseas.”