Yesterday, it was officially announced that the reigning NASCAR Whelen Euro Series champion Loris Hezemans will be defending his title with the No. 50 Hendriks Motorsport Ford Mustang this year while Tobias Dauenhauer is set to be making his NWES debut as the new EuroNASCAR 2 class driver of the No. 50 team.
In just Hezemans’ second season in the series, Hezemans was crowned as the 2019 Euro Series champion after scoring four race wins – all were scored consecutively, 6 total podiums, 8 Top-5 finishes, and 11 Top-10 finishes. The championship title allowed him to compete in the 2019 NASCAR PEAK Mexico Series season finale race at Mexico City as a guest entry for Jimmy Morales’ team, although he failed to finish the race due to an engine issue mid-way through the race.
Hezemans also made his debut in NASCAR’s three national series last year with his participation in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Road America. Driving B. J. McLeod Motorsports’ No. 99 Chevrolet Camaro, Hezemans climbed his way to the Top 15 before a power steering failure and a late-race crash dropped him down to 22nd place.
For Hezemans, the championship triumph showed what the team is capable of and he aims to continue the consistency that he showed in the second half of 2019 in the midst of the increasing level of competition.
“We showed last year that we had a really good outfit,” said Hezemans to euronascar.com. “We not only managed to win the Drivers Championship with me but also the Teams Championship. We really showed what we’re capable of doing. I think we can definitely do the same this year. The competition will be stronger than it was last year as there are more experienced drivers on the grid and also the EuroNASCAR 2 top drivers will join the EuroNASCAR PRO championship. There will be a lot of potential winners and drivers that could make it in the top-5 and top-10.”
“I have to learn from the mistakes I made last year and also take the good things we did into account. We will try to keep the consistency we had in the second half of the 2019 season and the momentum we gained by winning the championship. For sure to continue our relationship with Hendriks Motorsport is another important factor. We’ve learnt a lot in 2018 and showed good potential right from the beginning. Everything was new for them and also for me. With winning the championship in 2019 we got in the flow and this will help us for sure.”
For Tobias Dauenhauer, the 2020 season will mark a new chapter in his racing career as he will be making a switch from ADAC GT4 Germany to the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series.
Dauenhauer, who previously had been a teammate of Hezemans during the 2018 24 Hours of Spa, was invited by Hezemans to last year’s NASCAR GP of Germany at Hockenheim as a guest for Hendriks Motorsport. Dauenhauer then decided to took part in the first Drivers Recruitment Program Test Day at November before he announced yesterday that he will become the new EN2 driver of the No. 50 Hendriks Motorsport team.
“I’m happy to join the championship winning team Hendriks Motorsport and the European NASCAR series in 2020,” said Dauenhauer to euronascar.com. “I’m proud to be part of the team and I’m confident that we can compete with the frontrunners in the upcoming season. I want to learn a lot from them and develop as a race car driver. I cannot wait for the season to start and face this new challenge. I’m really motivated.”
“I know him because we drove the 2018 Spa 24 Hours together,” said Hezemans on Dauenhauer joining the No. 50 Hendriks team this year, “He did GT4 racing and was looking for something new in 2020. We introduced him to the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series and this started to get things rolling. He was part of the DRP and did a good job during the test. EuroNASCAR is something completely new for him and he has to get used to it, but he will make his way for sure and I’m looking forward to working with him.”
The announcement also reveals that Hendriks Motorsport will be expanding into a three-car team in 2020. It was also revealed that Hendriks has signed five drivers out of the six possible full-time driver slots that the team can field this year.
It is currently unknown who are the other three drivers that the team have signed, but it is very likely that Martin Doubek will be staying with the No. 7 Ford Mustang team while Giorgio Maggi could be receiving a promotion to the PRO class driver of Hendriks’ currently No. TBA third team.
Disclaimer: Unless noted, all photos used in this article are courtesy of Hendriks Motorsport / Tobias Dauenhauer.