The second leg of the 2020 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series Recruitment Program brought 22 drivers from 12 different countries to Fontenay Le Comte, France on December 12-13. All drivers not had the opportunity to test a Euro NASCAR car but also met the NWES organisation, including President – CEO Jerome Galpin, and former NWES Champion Lucas Lasserre. On the line there was the chance to earn a scholarship for their 2020 racing season in the official European NASCAR Series.
The 22 drivers were: Dorian Cazals, Gilles Cheron, Etienne Cheli, Davide Dallara, Miguel Gomes, Alex Lambertz, Julia Landauer, Hugo Roch, Igor Romanov, Fabio Spatafora, Vladimiros Tziortzis, Gordon Barnes, Markku Blomqvist, Petri Blomqvist, Gasper Dernovsek, Gigi Ferrara, Franco Leogrande, Bernando Manfre, Federico Monti, Yevgen Sokolovskiy, Alexis van de Poele and Santtu Vuoksenturja.
The drivers came in with the most diverse backgrounds the Recruitment Program has ever seen: Julia Landauer has plenty of experience in North American NASCAR racing, Alex Lambertz is a race winner in the European GT4 Series, Vladimiros Tziortzis comes from Formula 3 and others came from karting, GT racing and open wheel racing. Among them, 3 talents, Dorian Cazals, Etienne Cheli and Hugo Roch, are finalist of Jacques Villeneuve’s Feed Racing school.
"It has been twelve years since I drove a race car in the rain but I was very quick in this Euro NASCAR car," said Landauer, whose resume features both the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and the NASCAR Pinty’s Series. "I really have learned a lot and there is so much mechanical grip in those cars, it’s so much fun."
Formula 3 driver Vladimiros Tziortzis was also very enthusiastic about his first ever experience in a Euro NASCAR V8 beast.
"It was my first time in the car and it was a nice experience," said the 22-year-old driver from Cyprus. "It’s such a great car and I felt comfortable with it from the very first session. I drove in the rain and the conditions were very tricky. I didn’t expect this much grip in the car and tyres, it was very cool! It was great fun to be part of the Recruitment Program. I would like to race in Euro NASCAR in the 2020 season and I’m working to put a program together."
Ukrainian Yevgen Sokolovskiy boasts plenty of experience in oval racing at Raceway Venray and quickly adapted to the Euro NASCAR car on a road course.
"The car felt very good and I was comfortable right from the beginning," said Sokolovskiy. "Even in wet conditions, it was nice to drive this powerful Euro NASCAR car. I really hope that I will be able to sign a contract at the beginning of the new year."
German GT4 race winner Alex Lambertz fell in love with the car from the very first second.
"In these cars it’s all about the driver and I really like it," said the 22-year-old race driver from Heinsberg, Germany. "There are no electronic driving aids and you have to work very hard in the car. What I really like is that the skills of the drivers make the difference, not the car."
Following the high rate of requests by drivers to participate in the NWES Recruitment Program, the series is evaluating the addition of more Recruitment Days. All announcements will be published on EuroNASCAR.com.