Credits: NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Bart Dehaese

Gianmarco Ercoli will be back for another season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series as he aims to finish inside the Top-5 in every race of the 2023 season with CAAL Racing’s No. 54 team.

Gianmarco Ercoli, one of the primary contenders for the EuroNASCAR title over the past several years, will be back for another full-season campaign in 2023 after the Italian announced his return to CAAL Racing on 23 March.

Ercoli, who entered EuroNASCAR’s top division in 2016 after conquering the EuroNASCAR 2 class in 2015, has turned himself into one of the fastest drivers in the European stock car racing scene after he joined CAAL Racing in 2020.

Credits: NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Stephane Azemard

Taking over the seat vacated by Alon Day at CAAL, Ercoli enjoyed his breakthrough season that year as he went on to score one victory – his first since 2018 – and eight Top-10 finishes on his way to finish sixth in the overall standings, with only a final round crash with then-teammate Mauro Trione preventing the Italian from finishing inside the Top-5.

Ercoli bounced back from the late setback in 2020 with an even stronger season in 2021. The Italian scored one victory and seven podium finishes that year on his way to finish second – just behind the eventual champion Loris Hezemans – in the overall standings.

In fact, Ercoli could have been crowned as that year’s champion had he not made a critical error in the seventh race of the season at Rijeka. In that race, Ercoli violated the start procedure by putting his car side-by-side with Hezemans, which caused the entire outside row of the grid to start alongside the inside row starters.

Credits: NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Bart Dehaese

Ercoli’s actions would be considered fine in the previous seasons, but EuroNASCAR had changed the starting procedures that year. The new rule mandated the two starting rows to be separated by the grid lines present on the track when the field took the green flag, be it for the start of the race or during restarts.

A 10-second time penalty was awarded to Ercoli for his actions, which dropped him from first to tenth in the final results. Given that Ercoli missed out on the title by just three points, the thirteen points he lost that day ultimately proved to have a large impact on his championship hopes.

Credits: NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Klemen Sofric

Ercoli continued to prove himself as one of EuroNASCAR’s best in 2022 by securing three race wins – his most for a single year in ENPRO – and five other podium finishes on his way to finish third in the overall standings.

Despite scoring three finishes outside of the Top-20 in the first half of the season, Ercoli bounced back by securing six consecutive podium finishes and was in the position to win the title in the final race at Rijeka had he not made an aggressive block that caused him and Giorgio Maggi to collide together on the closing stages of the race.

With Ercoli having proved to have both speed and consistency in the last few seasons, the Italian driver exclaimed an ambitious goal that he wanted to achieve in the upcoming 2023 season.

Credits: NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Klemen Sofric

“I want to finish in the top 5 in every race of the 2023 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series season,” said Ercoli on his 2023 goal to

While it is confirmed that he will be back in the No. 54 car this year, the team’s primary sponsor is currently unknown. The No. 54 CAAL team gained notoriety in 2022 because of the team’s decision to choose Escort Advisor, a website “focused” in adult pornographic content, as their primary sponsor.

Disclaimer: Credits for all photos are listed underneath each image.


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