The virtual competition held using the RaceRoom platform last year culminated in an in-person final, held within NCME University of Bolton using Racing Unleashed simulators. The prize was the opportunity to learn, train, enter licence tests and be in with the chance of a full season of racing.
Since the victory in May 2022, Fairclough then went on to compete in the ROKiT British F4 esports competition later in the year that used the iRacing platform.
He will now partake in the full British F4 season, driving for JHR Developments. The team claimed seven race victories last season thanks to Joseph Loake and Georgi Dimitrov.
“I’m over the moon to finally be racing in British F4 with JHR and ROKiT,” said Fairclough.
“This is the most unbelievable prize of a lifetime that the ROKiT Racing Star competition has given me. I hope I can do Jonathan, ROKiT, JHR and Racing Star proud.
I’ve got a lot to learn having never raced a car like this before, as I’ve come from a closed, front-wheel drive Fiesta, so progression and consistency will be key.
“I’m hoping to achieve some good results and look forward to an immense year ahead in this prestigious series which happens to start on my birthday weekend. What a birthday that’s going to be!”
The Crawley-based 16-year old has prior racing experience in both the BRSCC Ford Fiesta Junior Championship and Junior Saloon Car Championship to go alongside his sim racing exploits.
“Deagen was a very worthy winner of the inaugural ROKiT Racing Stars programme which we set up to find the next generation of motorsport talent in a pioneering way, giving the opportunity to young drivers who otherwise wouldn’t be able to access high-end motorsport,” said Jonathan Kendrick the Chairman and co-founder of the ROKiT Group of Companies.
“Getting onto this ladder to Formula 1 in this way is something that hasn’t been done before. It was tough for Deagen to win this opportunity and it will be a hard year for him with a lot of learning ahead, but I have every confidence in him.”
The 2023 ROKiT British F4 Championship starts at Donington Park on 22nd April, with 10 rounds and 30 races across the year as part of the British Touring Car Championship support package, including live TV coverage for those in the UK.