Aron Smith, the 21-year-old student from Rathfarnham, finished the Air Asia Renault Clio Cup Championship UK in Brands Hatch recently on a high, taking two podiums that earned him the Under 23 Championship for 2011.
Smithís great results also secured the team Championship for Team Pyro. Smith finishes the year with nine podiums, which was two more than the highest number from any competitor in the Clio Cup. He also secured three graduate trophies along the way to taking runner up spot in the overall Championship for the season.
Smith now has his sights firmly set on next year and his aim is to secure a place in the British Touring Car Championship for 2012. After demonstrating his ability in the once off weekend he competed in at Knockhill earlier this year in the BTCC, where he secured two strong finishes and also managing to get into the points on his BTCC debut. Subsequently, Smith is now considering a number of offers from the top teams in the BTCC to contend the full season in 2012.
As part of the prizes from the Clio Cup this year, Smith will now travel to France for a two day test in a Renault Megane. He will also be the only Irish representative to attend this yearís annual TOCA Night of Champions, which is due to be held on November 26 in the Crown Plaza, London, as well as the 2011 British Championships Awards Ceremony which will be held on October 22 in the Oxford, Belfry, where he will be awarded the prizes for the Clio Cup.
Aron is very grateful for all the support and good wishes he has received from all his followers both in Ireland and in the UK. He has received many emails, texts and messages on Facebook during the year. Smith has attracted a lot of media attention and TV coverage, with ITV 4 showing live coverage of the days racing on the Sunday of each weekend. He has also received great support from both DIT, who has awarded him their college sports scholarship for the last two years, as well as Motor Sport Ireland.
Smith hopes to sign a deal for 2012 before the end of this year, subject to him finalising his budget, which he is currently working on.
Smith, along with his agent, are working hard to bring a number of new sponsors on board both in Ireland and the UK. He hopes to have his full budget in place to allow him to begin testing in January 2012, in preparation for the new BTCC Championship which is due to begin the first weekend of April next year.