Hendriks Motorsport drivers Loris Hezemans and Martin Doubek confirms that they will be returning to the team in 2021 as Hezemans also announces that he will be entering two races in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, while Doubek reveals some information regarding Hendriks’ potential lineup of drivers and aspirations to race in Dakar in the future.
Hendriks Motorsport drivers Loris Hezemans and Martin Doubek confirms that they would be returning to the Dutch-based team for 2021 as Hezemans also announced that he will be entering two races in the NASCAR Xfinity Series starting from this weekend’s Call 811 Before You Dig 200 at Phoenix Raceway.
Hezemans, the 2019 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series champion, announces his two-race Xfinity deal on Friday as he is scheduled to run a Reaume Brothers Racing prepared, MBM Motorsports entered No. 13 Hezeberg Systems Chevrolet Camaro for both Phoenix and Alsco Uniforms 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on 29 May. It would mark Hezemans’ first oval starts in the Xfinity Series and also marked his return to the series following his one-off appearance at Road America in 2019.
“I am very excited to announce that I will be joining Reaume Brothers Racing for the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Phoenix on March 13,” said Hezemans. “My number one priority for this race weekend is to bring the car home and gain as much experience as possible. Without any practice or qualifying the learning curve will be a big step but I am fully up for the challenge. With this experience in Phoenix I hope to continue to progress through the different size oval tracks throughout the year.”
As mentioned above, while Hezemans’ ride is going to be prepared by Reaume Brothers, MBM will be the team that fields his ride instead. This is owing to the number of musical chairs in Owner Point status that has happened recently as a consequence of Xfinity’s lack of qualifying in all but 8 races of the season.
Because the number of teams that planned to compete full-time in Xfinity this year exceeds the number of grid spot available in the non-qualifying races, several teams had formed partnership deals that would guarantee them a spot in non-qualifying races.
Reaume Brothers was one of those teams: They had initially formed a partnership deal with RSS Racing to race the No. 23 car, but Our Motorsports purchased No. 23’s owner points after the race at Homestead. Josh Reaume, Reaume Brothers’ owner, then formed a partnership with Carl Long’s MBM Motorsports to allow Reaume to field a car in Xfinity using MBM’s No. 13 entry instead.
Reaume’s new partnership deal with MBM would not only guarantee Hezemans with a position on the starting grid, it would also mean that David Starr, who was initially scheduled to race the No. 13 car full-time and recently created controversy after a tire failure on his car led to a collision between him and Noah Gragson at Homestead, would race MBM’s No. 61 car on the two races where Hezemans is scheduled to participate in.
As for Martin Doubek, it was revealed through an interview with Dušan Bouzek at České okruhy that the Czech driver will be staying with Hendriks Motorsport for the 2021 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series season.
“Certainly,” said Doubek when asked on whether he will continue racing in EuroNASCAR this year. “Hendriks and I caught each other’s eye. After my experience at Renauer (Motorsport), I know that this is one of those good teams.”
“Last year my colleague Hezemans could win the EuroNASCAR PRO title and we won the title in EuroNASCAR 2, so I will not change teams,” said Doubek on whether he will stay with Hendriks for 2021.
Doubek has yet to confirm whether he will be competing in both classes on a double duty task or not, but he revealed that several other drivers are currently in negotiation for a drive with Hendriks in 2021.
“The team is negotiating with Lasse Sørensen, who won Elite 2 two years ago. Vittorio Ghirelli, who won EuroNASCAR 2 with Hendriks Motorsport last year, is also in talks with the team as does Giorgio Maggi. It is just a question on who will ride in EuroNASCAR PRO and who will in EuroNASCAR 2,” said Doubek on that topic.
While Doubek stated that he have “no problems” with driving in both classes, he also states that chasing the EuroNASCAR 2 title will be his goal in 2021 as he believed that he was capable of finishing inside the Top 3 in the standings last year had he didn’t miss the season opening round at Vallelunga due to COVID-19.
“Coming into this year, EuroNASCAR 2 is my goal and it would be the best if we can win the title,” said Doubek on his 2021 goal. “I’m probably not satisfied with podium finishes anymore because I know that if I hadn’t missed the races at Vallelunga last year, I would probably finish second or third (in the championship). Therefore, I would like to attack for the title.”
Doubek also reveals that he had aspirations to compete in the Dakar Rally in the future, owing to the plan of his father Jiří Doubek to expand his Orion Racing motorcycle team into the four-wheel categories.
“It is also being negotiated at the moment that we would ride the Dakar because Orion Racing has its own Dakar team, which races on motorcycles,” reveals Doubek on the interview. “Hendriks and I agreed to build a buggy and try some rallies with in Hungary or Spain where we could qualify for the Dakar and take part in it in January next year.”
“[Roy] Hendriks himself wants to come with me as a navigator, but I still have my dad in reserve who wants to go too. He is really looking forward to it and wants to participate as a navigator.”
“I don’t have a rally license yet. I never sat in one in my life, but I’m attracted to it. I’ve been to Dakar twice, in Peru and in Saudi Arabia. I think if Tomáš Enge can take part in the Dakar with the buggy, I can do it too.”
Disclaimer: Unless noted, all photos used in this article are courtesy of Hendriks Motorsport / NASCAR Whelen Euro Series.