The 2020 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series season will not start until at least late June due to the postponements of the first two rounds as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, but on March the series have announced that 33 entries from 16 teams have signed up on the provisional Entry List for the 2020 season, tying the record amount of entries set in the previous season.
With interest remaining at a record high and the field looking to be even more competitive than in previous years, we’re taking a look on the provisional Entry List and see what has changed on the 16 teams that is scheduled to compete in 2020.
Alex Caffi Motorsport
Ex-F1 driver Alex Caffi’s Euro Series team Alex Caffi Motorsport will be returning to field the No. 1 and the No. 2 teams once again. Alex Caffi Motorsport will be sporting a new look for this year as the team will form a technical partnership with former series entrants Race Art Motorsports.
One driver, Alessio “Alex” Bacci, has been confirmed by the team as one of its drivers for the 2020 season. Bacci will be replacing Finn Jesse Vartiainen as the driver of the No. 2 team in the EuroNASCAR 2 (EN2) class. We expect that Kenko Miura will be staying in the No. 2 team for a 4th season in the series, while the No. 1 team will have a rotating field of drivers as it has been in past seasons.
RDV Competition will be continuing their streak of competing in every single Euro Series season in the NASCAR era, once again keeping Frédéric Gabillon and Ulysse Delsaux for the 2020 season. Both RDV entries will now use the Chevrolet Camaro body style after the team ran both the SS and the Camaro bodies in 2019.
Gabillon will be staying in the No. 3 TEPAC team once again as the team opts to brings back RDV’s iconic black-and-white split scheme livery, this time modified to match with RDV’s new livery style introduced last year.
As for Delsaux, he has opted to renumber his entry from No. 36 to the No. 10 to follow his desire to promote his home district Aube. He will also do the double duty this year to gain more track time, meaning that RDV will be returning to the now-called EN2 class for the first time since Delsaux’s championship-winning 2018 season.
The No. 10 Genie Civil Services Chevrolet Camaro will be sporting the same livery as it did in 2019, although now it will feature the French tricolor in the front splitter. Tributes to Jim Clark will also be featured once again as the gold markings in its front grille is said by Delsaux to be a tribute to Clark and Team Lotus’ Gold Leaf livery.
FEED Vict Racing
Jacques Villeneuve and Patrick Lemarié’s academy team FEED Racing will be entering the series for the first time this year and they will be joined by Euro Series veteran owners Dario Caso and Onofrio Veneziani, who merged Racers Motorsport with FEED to form FEED Vict Racing for 2020. FEED Vict are aiming to go big right from the start as the team will be entering four cars in its debut season.
Out of the four FEED Vict entries, only the No. 4 team (Racers’ former No. 9 entry) had no drivers confirmed yet. JV himself will be driving the No. 5 car in the PRO class, while Lemarié and FEED academy driver Simon Pilate will be driving the No. 6 car in the PRO and EN2 classes respectively.
Dario Caso has also been confirmed to be driving in the team in the PRO class for 2020 and its very likely that he will be staying in his usual No. 8 entry. Alessandro Brigatti – who scored two podiums in the Playoff rounds last year – has also been confirmed to be driving with FEED Vict and judging by his ride at CIN’s Watkins Glen race, it is suggested that Brigatti will be moving to the No. 8 team and replace Nicholas Risitano as the No. 8 team’s EN2 class driver.
Euro Series’ defending Teams Champion Hendriks Motorsport will be expanding once again, as the team announced that they will field a third entry, the No. 18 Ford Mustang, to accompany the No. 7 and the championship-winning No. 50 teams for 2020.
All three Hendriks drivers in 2019 are going to be staying with the team, and this time they all will be competing in the PRO class: Martin Doubek and defending champion Loris Hezemans will be staying in the No. 7 and No. 50 teams respectively, while Giorgio Maggi earned himself a well-deserved promotion to the PRO class as the driver of the newly-formed No. 18 Hendriks team.
Doubek will be doing double duty once again and he will be joined by two new teammates in the EN2 class: 2019 Elite 2 third-place finisher Vittorio Ghirelli and series debutant Tobias Dauenhauer. Ghirelli will be chasing the EN2 title once again in the No. 18 team while Dauenhauer will be joining Hezemans in the No. 50 team.
Doubek’s No. 7 team will be sporting a brand new cyan and lime green livery, while the No. 18 team will be sporting a red-and-grey livery. Sponsorship-wise, the No. 50 team will be having a new primary sponsor in the form of German oil company RZOIL. In addition, all three teams will also carry sponsorship from Momo, who has signed a sponsorship deal with Hendriks as one of its official partners for 2020.
The 2020 season for PK Carsport will arguably feature the team’s strongest driver line-up yet, especially in the PRO class as the team will be fielding an all-star field of last year’s runner-up Stienes Longin and two-time series champion Alon Day.
Longin, fresh from his breakthrough season in 2019, will be continuing to drive with the No. 11 team once more as Day made shockwaves in the off-season following his decision to join PK’s No. 24 team after five years of competing with rival team CAAL Racing. The all-star field of PK Carsport came at the cost of Nicolò Rocca, who is now left without a ride despite finishing third in the 2019 season.
In the EN2 class, NASCAR Roots star Julia Landauer will be making a full-time trip to Europe as she will accompany Longin in the No. 11 team. Guillaume Dumarey, former EN2 race winner for the team, will be returning to the team after a one-year absence as he is scheduled to be returning to the No. 24 team that he competed with in his previous two seasons in the series.
Roberto Sini’s Solaris Motorsport No. 12 entry remains relatively unchanged for a third season in a row, although the team will be entering a technical partnership with CAAL Racing for 2020, hence why the team is listed in the Entry List as “Solaris Motorsport by CAAL Racing”.
Francesco Sini once again will be campaigning the No. 12 Chevrolet Camaro for a third year in the PRO class, although the team has not announced a driver to compete in the EN2 class. According to team statement, an announcement for the EN2 class driver is going to be made in another, currently unannounced date.
After a one-off entry at Franciacorta last year, Swiss-based team 42 Racing has been listed in the provisional Entry List to be set for their first full-time campaign this year. In addition to the No. 42 Ford Mustang team that the fielded last year, 42 Racing will also be adding a second entry in the form of the No. 17 team for 2020.
Francesco Garisto, participant in the 2020 Drivers Recruitment Program, has been confirmed to be driving for the team for the 2020 season. No other drivers have been announced yet, although it is likely that Luigi Ferrara – who had been using the No. 42 Ford Mustang for testing reasons last year – will be making his full-time debut with the No. 42 team this year.
After securing a double championship triumph with Lasse Sorensen in the Elite 2 class and Alain Mosqueron in Elite Club last year, DF1 Racing is aiming for a championship sweep this year and for that reason, the team will be expanding into four cars despite losing Dexwet as the title sponsor of the team.
The No. 22 entry, ran last year as a collaboration entry with Marko Stipp Motorsport at Hockenheim, will now be solely ran by DF1 this year and will field a stacked driver line-up of three-time series champion Ander Vilariño and impressive rookie Andre Castro. DF1 has also bought Memphis Racing’ No. 23 entry, with Henri Tuomaala scheduled to be staying with the No. 23 team for 2020.
As for the team’s No. 66 and No. 99 entries, both Lasse Sørensen and Justin Kunz will be receiving full promotions to the PRO class for 2020. They will be joined by EN2 debutants Andreas Jochimsen and Marcel Lenerz respectively, both of whom will be looking to emulate the success achieved by Lasse in the 2019 season.
After an unexpected expansion following the acquisition of the No. 27 entry mid-season last year, CAAL Racing will be doing yet another expansion for the 2020 campaign as they will be bringing back the No. 56 entry entered at Hockenheim on a full-time basis as the No. 88 team.
CAAL’s initial two entries last year, the No. 31 and No. 54 teams, will see Mauro Trione and Arianna Casoli retaining their seats in those teams for another season. Mauro’s son Giovanni will be making a step-up to the EuroNASCAR 2 class to race alongside his father in the No. 31 team, while Alon Day’s departure to PK has been responded by the team with the signing of Gianmarco Ercoli, thus bringing the Italian back to the team he made his series debut with in 2014.
The No. 27 entry will see Pierluigi Veronesi retain his seat in the team, with Thomas Ferrando expected to stay as well following an impressive turnaround for the young – but experienced – Frenchman following the mid-season team switch for the No. 27 team last year.
With The Club Motorsports leaving the sport, Max Lanza has opted to switch teams and join CAAL’s new No. 88 teams for 2020. He will be joined by ex-F1 driver Gianni Morbidelli, who will be making his return to stock car racing after his participation in the short-lived Speedcar Series in the late 2000’s.
After expanding into two cars for the 2019 season, Mishumotors will be back fielding just the No. 33 team again for 2020 – although the No. 70 entry can still pop up as a part-time entry during the season. Apart from it, no other words are known from the team just yet although we can expect Lucas Lasserre will be staying with the team once again despite a retirement-filled 2019 season for the series’ inaugural champion in the pre-NASCAR era.
The big question for the team mostly lies on the EuroNASCAR 2 class driver. Ben Creanor has shown glimpses of promise in his full-season debut last year, but it’s still a possibility that the team will instead opt for team owner Mirco Schultis or a rotation of drivers to race the No. 33 car in the junior division this year.
Marko Stipp Motorsport
Marko Stipp Motorsport, who entered the series last year following Marko Stipp’s acquisition of the Racing-Total team mid-season, are planning to field two cars once again this year.
MSM’s No. 46 car will be retained for 2020 and despite MSM and DF1’s No. 22 collaboration entry is now going to be run solely by DF1, both teams have made it official that there will be a new collaboration entry between the two teams this year. Now running as the No. 48 team, it is highly expected that MSM’s new signing Evgeny Sokolovsky (aka. Yevgen Sokolovskiy) will be running with MSM’s new team as Sokolovsky had run the No. 48 in Venray’s LMV8 series for the past two years.
Lucas Lasserre’s Speedhouse 64 team confirms that they will be back with the No. 64 team for 2020. Salvador Tineo Arroyo and Matthias Hauer became the team’s primary drivers for the 2019 season campaign, although currently it is unknown whether they will be retained by the team or not for this year. What is certain though is that any driver affiliated with Lasserre’s Speedhouse organization is going to have a likelier chance to drive for the team, as shown by Hauer and Eric Quintal last year.
Team Bleekemolen came to the series with high expectations, but results proved to be tough for the Bleekemolen family’s team last year. As Sebastiaan Bleekemolen said in the team’s official return announcement, they were “not happy at all with the results in the 2019 season.”
Thus, Team Bleekemolen and the No. 69 Ford Mustang team has ambitiously set the goal of battling for an overall podium finish for either Sebastiaan or Michael, both of whom will be returning to the PRO and EN2 classes respectively for 2020. The 70-year old Michael is also going to set his sights for the Legend Trophy after he missed it by tiebreakers to Ian Eric Waden in 2019.
DF1’s acquisition of the No. 23 entry from Memphis Racing for 2020 meant that Euro Series’ Swedish-based team will be downscaling to a single car team for the new campaign this year. The No. 77 team will once again lead Memphis’ efforts in the team’s third season in the series, with Alexander Graff expected to be staying with the No. 77 team for the third year in a row.
Meanwhile, the status of the No. 77 team’s EuroNASCAR 2 driver remains to be a mystery so far. Among the candidates that we can see take up the No. 77 team’s vacant seat in the EN2 class includes the team’s 2019 driver Freddie Hemborg, the team’s 2018 driver Guillaume Deflandre, last year’s Legend Trophy winner Ian Eric Waden, and Drivers Recruitment Program “scholarship” winner Santtu Vuoksenturja.
Not Only Motorsports
The second new team to join the Euro Series grid this year, Not Only Motorsports recently announced that they will be fielding the No. 89 team for the team’s first season in the series. Fabio Spatafora, who also brought in his JF Pure Energy Drink as the team’s primary sponsor, will be returning to the series for the first time since Monza 2013 as the team’s PRO driver while Davide Dallara, the team’s G1 Series driver, will be making his series debut in the EN2 class.
Despite speculations just after last year’s NASCAR Finals at Zolder that the team is folding following the team’s decision to sell the two cars the team used in the series, Braxx Racing will be returning strong with another two-team campaign for the 2020 season.
For the first time in the team’s history, the team will not use the team’s traditional number No. 78 that has been present since the team’s debut as Brass Racing in 2015. Instead, the team’s former No. 78 entry will be renumbered to the No. 91 team. Marc Goossens and Sven van Laere have been confirmed to be returning to Braxx for a full-time campaign with the No. 91 team in the PRO and EN2 classes respectively.
As for the No. 90 team, Scott Jeffs have been confirmed to be promoted to the PRO class after impressing in his Elite 1 debut at Hockenheim last year. Braxx Performance will continue to sponsor Jeffs and the No. 90 Mustang for the 2020 season while long-time team sponsor IVAR is expected to be making their first appearance as a primary sponsor in the rounds at Most and Venray.
Disclaimer: Unless noted, all photos used in this article are courtesy of NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Stephane Azemard / Bart Dehaese.