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Weekly Racing Roundup (12.13.21)

New Porsche Junior, Land to defend GT Masters title, Optimum joins LMP3 and more news…

Photo: Porsche

***Laurin Heinrich has been selected as a Porsche Junior driver for 2022 and will receive funding towards a season in Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup as part of his prize. The Carrera Cup Germany race winner was selected from a group of 12 hopefuls who recently took part in a three-day assessment at Aragon.

***Vice President of Porsche Motorsport Thomas Laudenbach said: “The benchmark at the event in Aragon was extremely high. We’re delighted to offer Laurin Heinrich our support and assistance as the new Porsche Junior over the coming season. The concept of the Porsche Motorsport pyramid has proven itself over decades and in many cases has helped talented youngsters climb the career ladder to become works drivers. We want to continue this.”

***Reigning ADAC GT Masters champion Land-Motorsport will expand to a three-car program in the series next year with the new Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo II. Former Grasser Racing Team driver Tim Zimmermann is the first confirmed member of the lineup.

***Allied-Racing has also announced GT Masters as its series of choice for 2022 after spending this year in Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS. Joel Sturm will pilot the 2020 ADAC GT4 Germany title-winning team’s Porsche 911 GT3 R.

***Former Zakspeed managing director Philipp Zakowski is at the helm of a new team entering GT Masters next season. ZVO Racing, which Zakowski runs alongside Joerg van Ommen, will enter a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo. It also has a Mercedes-AMG for the GT4 Germany support series. Gabriela Jilkova and Robert Haub will drive the GT4.

***Doerr Motorsport is running a trio of Aston Martin Vantage GT4s in ADAC GT4 Germany with a driving squad that includes reigning FFSA French GT4 champion Romain Leroux, who won his national Silver Cup title in an AGS Events-run Aston Martin.

***United Autosports has increased its Michelin Le Mans Cup presence to four Ligier JS P320 Nissans, with the confirmation of two more lineups. Andy Meyrick and Daniel Schneider return for a third season together, while Andres Latorre and Australian racer Garnet Patterson form a new pairing.

Image: Optimum Motorsport

***Experienced GT racing outfit Optimum Motorsport will expand to prototypes next year, with an LMP3 program in the Michelin Le Mans Cup. Optimum, which most notably operates the Inception Racing McLaren GT3 entry, has purchased a Duqueine D08 Nissan that will be driven by Mark Crader and 2007 British GT champion Alex Mortimer.

*** Porsche Carrera Cup GB front-runner Redline Racing has chosen Lamborghini for an Intelligent Money British GT Championship campaign in GT3. James Dorlin and Alex Malykhin will share Redline’s Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo in the Silver-Am class.

***Another British GT program confirmation has been made by Inspire Racing, which is fielding an Ekris-built M4 GT4 in the Pro-Am class for Richard Marsh and BTCC race winner Gareth Howell. The duo previously shared a McLaren 570S GT4 in 2017.

***British squad Greystone GT will make its endurance racing debut in the Gulf 12 Hours, fielding a McLaren 570S GT4 as it has done regularly this year in domestic competition. Oliver Webb leads a driver lineup that also includes Iain Campbell and Jamie Clarke.

***Nick Yelloly headlines Schubert Motorsport’s crew for the Hankook 24 Hours of Dubai. The BMW factory driver will share the German squad’s new M4 GT3 with Jordan Witt, Jens Liebhauser and Marcel Lenerz. Schubert won Dubai in 2011 with a BMW Z4 GT3.

***Academy Motorsport plans to return to the GT4 European Series after two years away when it focused on British GT during the COVID-19 pandemic. Matt Cowley is the first confirmed driver for the Academy’s program with a Ford Mustang GT4. “Having raced GT4 in Europe with Academy Motorsport in 2019 as an AMR Academy driver, I’m really looking forward to a double championship opportunity in 2022, with a return to Europe as well as campaigning the British GT4 championship,” Cowley said.

***A demonstration of Porsche Group C machinery will feature on the bill at the next Goodwood Members Meeting in April 2022. Approximately 15-20 cars covering Porsche’s successful 956 and 962 models are set to run at the vintage race meeting.

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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