News & Notes
***Members of Rolex 24 at Daytona winning team Wayne Taylor Racing rang the closing bell at the NASDAQ stock market in New York City on Friday. Team owner Wayne Taylor was joined by Ryan Briscoe and representatives from Cadillac and Konica Minolta to celebrate their win in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season opener.
***FIA World Endurance Championship GTE-Pro points leader Nicki Thiim will make his Super GT debut with Aston Martin customer squad PACIFIC D’Station Racing. Thiim will co-drive the Aston Martin Vantage GT3 with Tomonobu Fujii, who shared the car with Joao Paulo de Oliveira last year.
***Max Favard has been named team principal of Duqueine Team and will oversee the company’s race programs, including its European Le Mans Series LMP2 entry. Favard, who effectively replaces Yann Belhomnme, is the team’s former operations engineer and works under owner Gilles Duqueine.
***Audi has set an unchanged driver lineup for its six factory cars in the upcoming DTM season. Rene Rast, Mike Rockenfeller, Robin Frijns, Jamie Green, Nico Mueller and Loic Duval will return this year. They will all race for the same teams as last season: Abt Sportsline (Frijns/Mueller), Phoenix (Duval/Rockenfeller) and Rosberg (Green/Rast).
***Arno Zensen has retired after 25 years serving as Team Rosberg’s director, and was replaced on Feb. 1 by Kimmo Liimatainen, the team’s former sports manager.
***AMAC Motorsport will return to GT World Challenge Asia powered by AWS to defend its GT3 Am title. Andrew Macpherson and Ben Porter will once again share the Australian squad’s Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo.
***Further to its new-look LMP2 driver lineup, Graff has confirmed its LMP3 plans for the European Le Mans Series. The French squad has committed to a Ligier JS P320 for the first year of the updated LMP3 rules cycle. It will be driven by brothers Arnold and Maxime Robin, as well as Vincent Capillaire who represented Graff in the last two editions of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
***360 Racing has confirmed that it will embark on its fifth season in the ELMS LMP3 ranks. Ross Kaiser and Terence Woodward, who have been regular co-drivers since the team’s 2016 debut, will share a car with James Swift. 360 Racing is set to enter two cars for the second consecutive year after adding a second Ligier JS P3 Nissan to its stable for 2019. The team’s chassis choice for 2020 has yet to be announced.
***Former Mercedes-AMG factory driver Jan Seyffarth announced his retirement from professional motorsport on Friday. The 33-year-old had been a regular in sports car competitions around Europe with stints in series such as ADAC GT Masters, International GT Open and the former VLN (now NLS). Seyffarth is now set to switch focus to his FastLane media agency.
***KÜS Team75 Bernhard has signed former BWT Muecke Audi driver Mike David Ortmann to one of its Porsche 911 GT3 R driver lineups for ADAC GT Masters. Ortmann, who paired with Markus Winkelhock in the 2018 and 2019 seasons, will partner Porsche Carrera Cup Germany racer and GT3 debutant Jannes Fittje this time around.
***A Ginetta team will join the ADAC GT4 Germany grid this year, marking the first time the British constructor has featured in the championship. Piro Sports, which has previously competed in junior single-seaters and TCR Europe, has confirmed a Ginetta G55 GT4 for Cedric Piro and Robin Falkenbach.
***Allied-Racing has completed its GT4 European Series driver lineup with the confirmation of Bastian Buus and team owner Jan Kasperlik in its second Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport. Allied, which is also entering three cars in ADAC GT4 Germany, signed former European champions Nicolaj Møller Madsen and Joerg Viebahn for its lead entry back in January.
***Valentin Hasse-Clot and Alex Toth-Jones will drive for Beechdean AMR in this year’s British GT Championship. The pairing will vie for Silver Cup honors in an Aston Martin Vantage GT3.
***Japanese Super GT300 outfit Tsuchiya Engineering has switched car brands for the upcoming season. The team has swapped its Toyota 86 MC for a Porsche 911 GT3 R but will retain last year’s driver lineup of Kimiya Sato and Takamitsu Masui.
***Some-time sports car driver Aurelien Panis was crowned 2019-20 e-Trophee Andros champion on Saturday after winning the final race of the season in the French electric ice racing championship. Panis drove a Sainteloc Racing-prepared Audi A1 silhouette car for the full season in a grid that also included his father Olivier Panis, Nico Prost, Nathanael Berthon, Matthieu Vaxiviere and Sebastien Loeb.
***Oscar-nominated motion picture Ford v Ferrari picked up more silverware from the 2020 prize-giving season, winning the British Academy Film Award for Best Editing.
Daniel Lloyd contributed to this report