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Ellis, Auer Added to Mercedes-AMG Factory Roster

Mercedes-AMG signs Philip Ellis, Lucas Auer to ‘Performance’ contracts for 2022 season…

Photos: DTM

Philip Ellis and Lucas Auer have been named in Mercedes-AMG’s lineup of ‘Performance’ factory drivers ahead of the 2022 season.

The DTM race winners form part of a 10-man factory squad, while four drivers have been announced as Mercedes-AMG Juniors and a further three signed to a new ‘Expert’ role.

Ellis moves to the highest tier of the Mercedes-AMG official driver ladder after competing in last year’s DTM series as a Junior for the manufacturer.

The Swiss won the opening race at the Lausitzring en route to seventh in the points and also took victory in the Rolex 24 at Daytona GTD class driving for Winward Racing.

Auer was Ellis’ teammate at Winward in the DTM and achieved fifth in the standings with a strong late-season run that included wins at Assen and Hockenheim.

The retained Mercedes-AMG factory drivers heading into 2022 are Maximilian Buhk, Maro Engel, Maximilian Goetz, Jules Gounon, Thomas Jaeger, Daniel Juncadella, Raffaele Marciello and Luca Stolz.

All 10 drivers will support Mercedes-AMG’s customer racing operations in GT3.

In addition to the two ‘Performance’ driver signings, Mercedes-AMG has announced that Mikael Grenier will have official status with the manufacturer as a Junior driver.

The Silver-rated Canadian drove for SunEnergy1 Racing in last weekend’s Joburg Kyalami 9 Hour and is currently representing SPS Automotive Performance in the Asian Le Mans Series.

Grenier will hold Junior status alongside Patrick Assenheimer, Arjun Maini and Fabian Schiller.

Mercedes-AMG has added a third ‘Expert’ tier to its official driver structure, involving experienced sports car competitors who will be assigned to specific programs.

Adam Christodoulou, Manuel Metzger and Daniel Morad enter the 2022 season as Mercedes-AMG Expert drivers.

Christodoulou and Morad were previously designated as official esports drivers for 2021, with the latter continuing to focus on sim racing under his updated title.

Metzger and Christodoulou’s race programs will focus on the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

Alongside its driver lineup announcement, Mercedes-AMG has confirmed the continuation of its sponsorship deal with BWT for a second year. The agreement includes pink BWT helmet designs for Goetz, Gounon, Marciello and Stolz.

“In 2022, we want to be successful in each of the major race series, something that is also reflected by our driver lineup,” said Christoph Sagemueller, head of Mercedes-AMG Motorsport.

“Personally, I am also very pleased that not only our drivers of many years remain loyal to us, but new top-notch drivers also want to be part of the Mercedes-AMG family.

“Both Lucas Auer and Mik Grenier have continuously improved over the past years, making their integration into the lineup a logical consequence.

“Furthermore, we are also expanding our commitment with strong partners like BWT, which makes me personally very happy. All in all, looking at our lineup, coupled with our strong team spirit, makes me very confident for the new season.”

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

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