DRIVER UPDATE : Formula BMW : Melvin Moh
ETEC Motorsport are confident of their strongest Toyota Racing Series performance to date with a strong 5-car line up confirmed for the team this past week.
Returning British driver Josh Hill, local Porsche GT3 racer Jono Lester; and three rookie hopefuls in Victor Sendin (France), Melvin Moh (Malaysia) and Shahaan Engineer (India) give ETEC its most diverse flavour yet in New Zealand's premier single seater racing category, which kicks off with the first of five rounds at Teretonga Park in Invercargill on January 12-15.
The compressed 'five-in-five' championship format sees the entire 2012 championship completed in the space of four weeks, with Timaru, Taupo, Hampton Downs and the New Zealand Grand Prix at Manfeild following Teretonga throughout January and February.
Josh Hill, son of Formula One legend Damon and grandson of Graham, was one of the most improved drivers in the 2011 TRS, and looks to build on a strong season in British Formula Renault 2.0 where he finished in 4th place overall.
Also joining ETEC after recent experience in British Formula Renault is 16-year old Indian driver Shahaan Engineer, who competed with Fortec Motorsport in the recent Winter Series to gain further technical experience prior to joining the 20-car 2012 TRS field.
Frenchman Victor Sendin, also just 16-years of age, aims to use the Toyota Racing Series as part of his transition from a stellar karting career, guided by former A1GP France drivers Alexandre Premat and Nicolas Lapierre.
Malaysian driver Melvin Moh looks to build on an impressive pre-season test in the TRS at Manfeild recently and is targeting a top 3 finish in the championship. The former Petronas driver is a Formula BMW Asia race winner and finished second overall in the 2010 Super Taikyu Endurance Series in Japan in a factory BMW Z4.
Local honours will be held up by 22-year old New Zealand driver Jono Lester. Lester competed in the final round of the 2011 Toyota Racing Series with ETEC Motorsport and joins the team for his first full season of formula car racing, after competing in Porsche Carrera Cup racing locally and internationally since 2006.
"Jono and Melvin collected some valuable information for the team at the pre-season test and the team is already gelling well ahead of Teretonga," says Team Principal Trevor Sheumack.
"We're a diverse bunch this year and this will no doubt be the most competitive TRS season yet. Our drivers and team personnel are all equally motivated and we are looking forward to a busy few weeks in January and February."
ETEC Motorsport is supported in its 2012 Toyota Racing Series campaign by Tyre Plus, Michelin Tyres, Visa Global Logistics, Demon Energy Drinks and Pure Energy.