Two-time Firestone Indy Lights championship winning entrant Brian Stewart Racing has announced plans to field a team in the Cooper Tires-backed USF2000 National Championship in 2010 in a bid to foster links with promising young talent.

The new team will serve as a development step for the Indy Lights programme, which claimed back-to-back entrant championships in 2005 and 2006, and builds on the recently-unveiled 'Road to Indy' concept, which embraces both series.

"Since 2005, we have sponsored the Brian Stewart Racing Karting Championship in an effort to enable all young people to be able to participate in a competitive karting series while developing their driving skills," said team founder Brian Stewart, "Now we want to take our Driver Development Programme one step further by establishing a new stepping stone between karting and our Firestone Indy Lights team. The decision to enter a team in the USF2000 Series also helps us to support the 'Road To Indy' ladder programme that was recently announced by the Indy Racing League."

Participants in BSR's Driver Development Programme will compete in twelve USF2000 races over the course of the year, and will be supported by Indy Lights-quality staff and technology, including driver coaching by Tommy Byrne and physical training from the staff of PitFit.

"Each driver will have a team of people to support them, including top-notch mechanics and engineers," BSR business manager Janet Stewart confirmed, "We will be bringing 45 years of experience and our history of excellence with us to this series."