RILEY TO PROTOTYPE CUP ROB LADBROOK
“Why not give the CSCC a shot to race?” ”
Ave-riley has become the second marque to sign up to Bute Motorsport’s new Prototype Cup series next season, with the new AR-2 chassis planned to get its world racing debut in the preview race at Snetterton next month.
American sportscar giant Riley’s new LMP3 chassis, built in partnership with Ave Motorsports, has yet to make a competitive appearance following a year in gestation.
Ave-riley’s European agent, European Le Mans Series regular Murphy Prototypes, will field up to three cars in next year’s Prototype Cup, and plans to enter the inaugural race in Norfolk on October 8/9.
The car recently completed a two-day test at the Red Bull Ring in Austria and is now back in America having final tweaks to the design before being presented for formal ACO homologation.
Team head Greg Murphy said he planned to run cars in both the ELMS and Prototype Cup next year.
He said: “We’re planning to race it in Britain, and the aim is to give it a world debut in the October race, which would be the first time a new Riley has ever been launched outside of the US. Hopefully we can have it homologated in time and as soon as it is we’ll be out racing and cars will be for sale.
“The Ave-riley is a great piece of kit and has proven to be incredibly quick straight out of the box. It may be just one car for Snetterton, but for next year we’d like two or three in both the Prototype Cup and ELMS and we already have driver interest. I can see the British Prototype Cup series working. LMP3 is a big success story and is still growing so having a lower-cost place to race is a great idea.”
Rising British star Jordan Cane will race in BRDC British F3 with Hillspeed next year, after calling time on his American racing campaign.
The 15-year-old made his debut in the US Formula 1600 Championship last year, and became the youngest ever driver to win a single-seater race when he triumphed at Mid-ohio just over a month after turning 14.
He then moved up to USF2000 but has had a difficult season during which he switched teams mid-year.
Cane will now return to Britain and contest the British F3 championship once he turns 16 next May.
“The reason we decided to come back to Britain was because we had a challenging year in USF2000 but maybe one day I’ll go back there in the future if the opportunity arises further up the Road to Indy ladder,” said Cane. “The main focus to come back here was because financially it’s more beneficial. Also the car is F3-spec so gets a lot of following and Britain is renowned as the home of motorsport and the place to be recognised in.
“Everyone says about how young I am but I want to show my ability rather than living off a title [youngest winner].”
Cane will drive for the Hillspeed team that has entered into a new partnership with Cliff Dempsey Racing. He also had a successful test with Lanan but decided the Hillspeed offer was too good to refuse.
“Cliff Dempsey taught me how to drive a car and we’ve kept in contact ever since,” said Cane. “He’s worked with me for two years and knows how I like a car. I don’t believe in all the big flashy awnings, it’s just about how fast the car is on track. The atmosphere is that we’re only going out to win.
“The F3 car is a big step up from USF2000 in terms of aero and power. It’s great to drive and suits my driving style. I’m on a high right now and I feel like this past year has been a big learning curve but it’s probably the most beneficial year I’ve had. It’s now about testing, testing, testing – I will be flat out until my first race.”
Hillspeed boss Richard Ollerenshaw said the deal with Cliff Dempsey Racing made sense for both squads.
“Both teams have considerable experience in single-seater racing and by pooling that knowledge it will put Hillspeed and Cliff Dempsey Racing in a very strong position going forward,”he said.
Dempsey added: “This isn’t something I was planning but everything has come together very naturally and we’re looking forward to it hugely.
“It’s a great partnership, I’ll be joining Hillspeed’s engineers on the BRDC Formula 3 side and we’ll also be joining forces with our programme in Formula Ford 1600.”