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– Roush Yates Engines wins Special Achievement for Le Mans
– Multimatic win Racecar Aerodynamicist of the Year for the Ford GT
– Team Dynamics and Neil Brown Engineering win Race Engine Designer of the Year
– Magneti Marelli wins the Most Innovative New Motorsport Product of the Year

The unsung heroes behind the success of the Ford GT and the BTCC were recognised in the annual RACE TECH Awards at the World Motorsport Symposium, as was Italian company Magneti Marelli for the high-speed camera it developed for Formula 1.

In developing the GT, Ford relied heavily on its partners of many years Roush Yates Engines and Multimatic and it was these two companies that were honoured for their work.

As an engine partner of many years, Roush Yates Engines has been instrumental in developing the 3.5-litre Ford Ecoboost engine for racing applications, but the version it developed specifically for the FIA GTE and IMSA GTLM classes this year took it to a new level, enabling Ford to return to Le Mans and celebrate the 50th anniversary of its first win in 1966 with a win in 2016.

It is for this reason that Roush Yates Engines was awarded the quite unique Special Achievement Award, which was collected by Wade Riesterer, Technical Manager for Road Racing at Roush Yates Engines.

“Thank you to RACE TECH for this honour, I feel very humble to accept this award tonight on behalf of Roush Yates Engines and our partner Ford Performance.”

Multimatic was also another essential partner in the Ford GT programme from the outset, both racing and production cars being manufactured at its plant in Canada. It was also involved in the design and development, one of the tasks being to keep the car as aerodynamically efficient as possible while still retaining its beautiful shape.

Working with Ford Performance’s Bernie Marcus, the highly respected Dr Mark Handford, who led the aero team on behalf of Multimatic, received the prestigious Dino Toso Award for the Racecar Aerodynamicist of the Year, which was presented by former Dino Toso award winner, John Iley.

Handford said: “The beginning of this programme was a bit strange as we were spirited into the Ford facility in Dearborn and the car was designed in a basement which was a tornado shelter, so I thought ‘oh dear, here we go’, But it all came good. So thank you very much to RACE TECH for the award, it’s a great honour.”

The work done on transforming the K-series engine into a championship winning one in its first season was a huge task with a huge number of challenges needing to be addressed. However, undaunted the Team Dynamics/Neil Brown Engineering partnership rose to the challenge to allow Gordon Shedden to win his second successive BTCC championship.

On receiving the Race Engine Designer of the Year for the collaborative effort, Team Dynamics Technical Director Barry Plowman said: “I’d like to thank Neil Brown Engineering for all of their hard work with us and on winning the BTCC championship this year. It is a great honour to receive the RACE TECH Engine Designer of the Year award and I’d like to thank RACE TECH very much for this.”

From a shortlist of eight potential winners, all of which were strong contenders, Magneti Marelli picked up the highly-coveted Don Burgoon Award for the Most Innovative New Motorsport Product of the Year for its revolutionary high-speed camera. Tasked by the FIA to develop a camera which could record in milliseconds the movement of a driver’s head during the crucial moments of impact, Magneti Marelli developed a product which is not much bigger than a USB and could record 400 frames per second, compared to the previous standard of 25 fps.

Collecting the award, Damien Dussurgey, Head of Sales and Marketing for Magneti Marelli, said: “This product was developed in collaboration with the FIA and the Global Institute for Motorsport and Safety and it was done to help the FIA understand accident behaviour. Immediately after the first Grand Prix, it was already put to the test, helping us and the FIA to understand how to improve the car and safety regulations in the event of heavy incidents.

“It is a great honour to receive this award, which I accept on behalf of all of the teams that worked incredibly hard with us to develop this product.”

Speaking of the success of this year’s World Motorsport Symposium and Awards Dinner, Editor-in-Chief of Race Tech Magazine and co-founder of Kimberley Media Group, said: “Not just the winners of these awards, but also all those shortlisted show that innovation and inspiration are alive and well in motorsport and continue to push the boundaries even further.”

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