After finally unlocking the door to the EuroNASCAR PRO Victory Lane in the very last race of 2019, Stienes Longin will be back with PK Carsport and main sponsor Projob Workwear to aim at the European NASCAR crown at the wheel of the #11 Chevrolet Camaro.
Stienes Longin was one of the most consistent drivers last season. For the first time in his career, he led the standings entering the playoffs thanks to a record six second-place finishes in the first nine races of the season. A heartbreaking Semi Final 1 at the Hockenheimring cost him the chance to contend for the title, but Longin turned frustration and disappointment into motivation and broke through at his home track of Zolder, winning the final race of the season and the first of his EuroNASCAR PRO career.
The Belgian ended up second in points and immediately focused on taking the next step in 2020. Negotiations took longer than expected, but Projob Workwear will be back as the proud main sponsor of the #11 Camaro.
"Everybody was happy with what we did last year, but the goal is to win the championship. We have to gain just one more place, the most difficult one, and become champions," said the Leuven-native. "I think I learnt a lot in 2019. Especially the difference between finishing on the podium and winning a title. With PK Carsport and Projob Workwear we did a lot together, we improved together and we all have one common goal: raise the biggest trophy at the end of the season and fly to the NASCAR Hall Of Fame."
Winning his first race among the most competitive NASCAR drivers in Europe and doing it in dominant fashion under torrential rain in front of his home crowd could represent a key step towards the NWES championship for 28-year-old Stienes Longin.
"With so many second places I knew I was capable of winning, but you have to win one to know how it really feels. Now I’m confident the pieces of the puzzle will fall together. I don’t think I have to do things in a much different way, but I have to handle things differently." concluded the 2016 EuroNASCAR 2 champion. "With three playoff events, Vallelunga and Zolder will be even more important to position ourselves for the Finals. We have to be at our very best from September on. We’ll make sure to be ready."
Longin will have a new spotter in 2020: Two-time EuroNASCAR champion and PK Carsport team owner Anthony Kumpen will be on Longin’s radio, while Bert Longin will focus on other aspects of his son’s preparation.
"Stienes will have an even better platform in 2020," said Bert Longin. "He won his first EuroNASCAR PRO race and that is always important for a driver. He now knows for sure he can win because he proved it in the most difficult conditions. And then he’ll have Anthony Kumpen as his spotter. Sometimes, in a father-son situation, emotions can have the better of you both and that’s why we decide that Anthony will coach and spot Stienes. I’ll always be there and I’ll be focusing on other aspects and I am absolutely happy to be part of this NASCAR and PK Carsport families once again."
"I have known Stienes since he was one year old so this is definitely going to be special for me. I know him very well, I know what he’s feeling when he’s racing and I think this will allow me to help him as much as possible not only between races but also during the race," said Kumpen. "He did really well in 2019 and the goal is to fight for the championship in 2020. The first win is the most difficult one and that is in the books. The same way you have to learn how to win races, you have to learn how to win championships and I think Stienes has all the potential to be an even stronger title contender than last year."
With the April 25-26 Circuit Ricardo Tormo season opener approaching fast, Stienes Longin and the PK Carsport team will undergo a testing program to sharpen their weapons for EuroNASCAR title hunt.