Following the footsteps of your father into Formula 1 is not an uncommon feat, with Max Verstappen and Mick Schumacher both racing in F1 last season following successful spells in the category for their fathers.
Charlie Wurz is looking to become the next driver to enter Formula 1 after his father, after Alexander Wurz spent between 1997 and 2007 racing at the pinnacle of motorsport.
Having already won the 2022 United Arab Emirates F4 championship, Wurz is now confirmed to be competing in New Zealand’s Castrol Toyota FR Oceania championship this year as he looks to further his credentials in motorsport.
The series has a history helping drivers make it to Formula 1, with Lando Norris, Lance Stroll, Guanyu Zhou and Yuki Tsunoda all having competed in the championship on their way to making their F1 debuts.
The main appeal to this New Zealand series is that it takes place in the off-season of European competition, meaning that it does not interfere with other championships that the drivers may be involved in.
The series has only five rounds that will take place over January and February, with the winner securing 18 FIA Super License points which when looking at Logan Sargeant’s path to Williams, could be essential to F1 entry.
“Ever since I can remember my dad has recounted stories of his time racing in New Zealand, how it was such an important step in his career and how much he loved it,” said Wurz after being announced in the 2023 lineup.
“I’m so excited to be able to start 2023 with this experience and a big thank you to Toyota Gazoo Racing and M2 for making it happen.”
Racing for current favourites M2 Competition, Wurz has a real chance of going on to claim victory in this short series, a feat which team principal Mark Pilcher hopes can be achieved by the 17-year-old.
“It’s great that Charlie can begin his next step in New Zealand and we welcome him aboard. You drivers from F4 have made this step with success and we look forward to helping Charlie do the same,” he said.
At only 17 years of age, Wurz has plenty of time to continue his development as a driver, with the hopes that a strong showing in New Zealand could be part of his pathway to F3, F2 and maybe even F1.