DRIV­ERS FOR THE 2017 TRS CHAM­PI­ONSHIP

The New Zealand Herald - - SPORT -

No 3 Bren­don Leitch (New Zealand): Leitch was the most suc­cess­ful Kiwi driver in last sea­son’s TRS cham­pi­onship, fin­ish­ing third over­all. De­but­ing in 2014 he won the pre­lim­i­nary race at Man­feild and had three other podium fin­ishes. No 5 Pe­dro Pi­quet (Brazil): The 18-year-old Brazil­ian was one of the stars last sum­mer. Go­ing into the fi­nal round, Pi­quet was the only driver who had a chance of top­pling the even­tual cham­pion, Lando Nor­ris. No 8 Mar­cus Arm­strong (New Zealand): Amrstrong’s ca­reer be­gan in kart­ing in 2007 at the age of seven. His racing gath­ered mo­men­tum in 2016, the 16-year-old com­pet­ing in For­mula Re­nault as well as the Bri­tish For­mula 3 Cham­pi­onship. No 9 Je­han Daru­vala (In­dia): The 18-year-old fin­ished run­ner-up in the cham­pi­onship to Bri­tain’s Nor­ris last sum­mer and headed off to Europe for a sea­son of racing in For­mula Re­nault. Daru­vala will step up to For­mula 3 this year. No 10 Thomas Neubauer (France): Neubauer is one of the least ex­pe­ri­enced driv­ers in the field. The 17-year-old only got into a sin­gle seater racing last year. He has had 11 races in For­mula Re­nault in France scor­ing one podium. No 11 Tay­lor Cock­er­ton (New Zealand): The 2014/15 NZ For­mula Ford cham­pion will com­pete in TRS for the sec­ond time and will be look­ing to im­prove on his stel­lar de­but in 2016. Last sea­son Cock­er­ton was able to fin­ish all 15 races. No 12 Chris­tian Hahn (Brazil): Hahn is fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of com­pa­triot Pe­dro Pi­quet, who came here last year af­ter two sea­sons of racing in the Brazil­ian For­mula 3 Cham­pi­onship. Hahn fin­ished fourth in the 2016. No 22 Richard Ver­schoor (Nether­lands): Ver­schoor, 16, was no­ticed by the Red Bull Ju­nior Team at his first meet­ing and was signed to its sup­port pro­gramme. He won the North­ern Euro­pean Zone For­mula 4 Cham­pi­onship in 2016. No 24 Ameya Vaidyanathan (Great Bri­tain): The 20-year-old Lon­doner en­joyed a ca­reer in karts that led to the Bri­tish For­mula 4 Cham­pi­onship in 2015. He com­peted in the Bri­tish For­mula 3 and Euro­pean Open For­mula 3 Cham­pi­onship in 2016. No 26 Harry Hayek (Aus­tralia): Hayek, 17, has mainly raced in the Aus­tralian For­mula 4 Cham­pi­onship. Be­fore that Hayek had two years of kart­ing, win­ning NSW ti­tles. No 27 Jean-Bap­tiste Sim­me­nauer (France): Sim­me­nauer, 16, will be mak­ing his sin­gle-seater de­but in the TRS hav­ing been test­ing with sev­eral For­mula Re­nault teams over the past few months. He has com­peted suc­cess­fully in kart­ing. No 33 Kory En­ders (USA): Kory is a new­comer to sin­gle seater racing. The 19-year-old did the fi­nal three races of the Pro Mazda Cham­pi­onship at La­guna Seca in Septem­ber and will be full­time this year. No 47 Key­van An­dres (USA): Born in Ger­many, An­dres spent his child­hood in France be­fore the fam­ily moved to Florida in 2013. He’s raced karts in France and For­mula 2000 and the At­lantic Cham­pi­onship Se­ries in re­cent sea­sons. No 49 Thomas Ran­dle (Aus­tralia): Ran­dle came 10th in the TRS at the start of 2015, fin­ish­ing third at Rua­puna and Taupo. In 2016, he con­cen­trated on the Bri­tish For­mula 3 Cham­pi­onship, win­ning two races. No 51 Shelby Black­stock (USA): Black­stock is the son of Reba McEn­tire, one of the most fa­mous coun­try mu­sic singers of all time. The 26-year-old will make his TRS de­but this year hav­ing raced in Indy Lights the past two years. No 62 Fer­di­nand Hab­s­burg (Aus­tria): The highly-tal­ented Hab­s­burg won races in last year’s cham­pi­onship and shapes as a driver to beat this year. The young­ster is a de­scen­dant of Arch­duke Franz Fer­di­nand of Aus­tria. No 65 Enaam Ahmed (Great Bri­tain): Ahmed ar­rives here know­ing what he is up against, hav­ing been in the same team as de­fend­ing cham­pion Nor­ris in 2015. He con­tested three For­mula 3 Cham­pi­onships in 2016. No 80 Nikita Las­tochkin (Rus­sia): The Los An­ge­les based 26-year-old has only been racing for three years and has no back ground in kart­ing like many of his ri­vals. In 2015 and 2016 he fin­ished eighth in the US For­mula 2000 se­ries. No 83 Kami Lal­ib­erte (Canada): Lal­ib­erte, the son of Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Lal­ib­erte, is re­turn­ing for a sec­ond tilt at the TRS. The 17-yearold made his de­but here last sum­mer, when he fin­ished 13th over­all. No 96 Luis Leeds (Aus­tralia): The 16-year-old re­turns to New Zealand’s race tracks hav­ing pre­vi­ously driven in the Toy­ota 86 cham­pion-ship. Last year, he com­peted in 30 races in the Bri­tish For­mula 4 Cham­pi­onship, win­ning three.

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