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Reign­ing CIK-FIA Euro­pean KF cham­pion Ben Han­ley will switch back into rac­ing cars this sea­son, driv­ing an ORECANis­san 05 in the LMP2 class of the Euro­pean Le Mans Se­ries.

The 31-year-old will drive for Dragonspeed in the se­ries, hav­ing last raced in cars in 2010 when he con­tested a part-sea­son of Su­per­league For­mula. Han­ley had pre­vi­ously been a Re­nault de­vel­op­ment driver and was se­cond in the 2007 For­mula Re­nault 3.5 stand­ings.

But he was un­able to progress af­ter that and has raced in karts since 2009.

“I’m re­ally con­fi­dent this is a great op­por­tu­nity to get back into that form of rac­ing,” he said. “When you first move into sin­gle-seaters all you are look­ing at is get­ting into For­mula 1 but the closer you get to that the more you re­alise it’s fake. Most driv­ers have a lot of money and it re­duces the op­por­tu­nity for driv­ers who don’t have as much fund­ing. The next thing to do is look at GT and en­durance rac­ing and this is the right op­por­tu­nity for this to work.”

Han­ley adds that his years spent in kart­ing will prove ben­e­fi­cial.

“My time in kart­ing was use­ful as it was keep­ing me ac­tive, fit and rac­ing,” he said. “Last year was a good year and it was great to win the cham­pi­onship. In GT and LMP rac­ing there are a lot of cars on track and you can gain time by man­ag­ing the traf­fic and kart­ing helps with that. I have also been do­ing some test­ing with Pirelli and did a DTM test so I’ve been do­ing quite a lot of kilo­me­tres.”

Han­ley has raced karts for last seven years

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