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Dec 04, 2013 - 03:51 PM
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Team Parker Racing Combines With Audi For Blancpain Endurance
Posted by: newsla on Dec 04, 2013 - 03:45 PM
Sports Cars
Team Parker Racing Combines With Audi For Blancpain Endurance


Leading British sportscar squad Team Parker Racing is expanding into the international area in 2014 with Audi in the Blancpain Endurance Series.

 

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The Leicester-based team plans to run two Audi R8 LMS ultra cars in the five-round Blancpain Endurance Series, which includes GT racing’s blue-riband Spa 24 Hours, plus three-hour races at Monza, Silverstone and Paul Ricard, and the Nurburgring 1000Km.

Team Parker Racing also hopes to field the Audis in the ultra-competitive premier GT3 class of the British GT Championship, in which it has already begun a programme with Ginetta in the GT4 division.

One Audi will be driven in the Blancpain Endurance Series by Britcar MSA Endurance champions Ian Loggie and Chris Jones, together with Julian Westwood, a long-time engineer with Team Parker Racing in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB.

While it will be the first international programme for Loggie and Jones, it will be a return to top-level driving action for Westwood, who was a race winner in the European Renault Spider series in the 1990s.

Loggie recently tested an R8 LMS ultra at the Nurburgring, and Team Parker Racing completed the deal for a new partnership with Audi. It is hoped that the Loggie/Jones/Westwood line-up will be able to compete in the Gentlemens Trophy division of the Blancpain Endurance Series.

Team principal Stuart Parker said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for the team and it’s the way everyone wants to go – to prestigious international racing.

“We can’t wait. We’ve got a really good product in the Audi and, having met them in Ingolstadt, we’re excited about the relationship we’re going to have with them. Hopefully it will reap rewards in the years to come.

“At the moment we are talking to people about racing the second car, in Blancpain Endurance Series and/or British GT. Our intention is to go to a two-car Audi team as quickly as possible.”

The drivers:

Ian Loggie: “I test-drove the Audi at the Nurburgring and it was an amazing experience. It’s a much easier and more forgiving car to drive than I am used to. I’m absolutely convinced we can do a very good job in Blancpain. There are only five races, but they are five wonderful races and I would love to compete in some national events as well – British GT and Britcar.”

Chris Jones: “I haven’t driven the Audi yet but I’m really looking forward to it and the whole plan is very exciting. It’s definitely a step forward from the Porsche 997 Cup car we’ve been racing in Britcar. I really hope we can be eligible for the Gentlemens Trophy – it all depends on what the organisers say but it would be a big ask to go straight into Pro-Am.”

Julian Westwood: “This is probably the highest-profile racing I will have done as a driver for 20 years! It should be really exciting, and I’m really looking forward to all five events, especially the Spa 24 Hours. Hopefully we can pick up some good results while we are learning the tracks and learning the series, and then hopefully make the move to Pro-Am in our second year.”


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