Lapteron track for Peace race
MOTOR RACING Aric Lapter, Israel’s answer to Lewis Hamilton, will be involved in the Racing for Peace project with a Palestinian driver at Silverstone next week.
Hoping to become the first Israeli to compete in Formula One, the bachelor is looking forward to competing in an international race car series at the home of British motor racing in a car he designed. “I have the Israeli flag. He has the Palestinian flag. Let’s race,” he said.
A graduate in mechanical engineering at the Tel Aviv University, the 31-year-old has been involved in the sport since go-karting was introduced to Israel in 1996.
Originally from Tel Aviv, he moved to Italy a year later to complete a course at the Henry Morrogh racing school for Formula Ford. He returned to Israel in 1999 and test drove the GAC’s Formula Vee at Silverstone in 2006.
“The first time I raced in Formula Ford in Italy I said ‘wow, I must bring this to Israel,’” said Lapter.
Despite his love of the sport, it was only once the Knesset passed the motor sport law in Israel in December 2005 that Lapter set his sights on building a car. “Even today things are not clear,” he said. “We do not have a race track and are not allowed to bring Formula racing cars in, so if we can’t bring them, I say ‘let’s build them’.
His co-driver will be Rasheed Nashashibi, who competes in the Middle East’s Formula Thunder Series and won the 2006 Palestinian go-kart title.
Looking ahead to the test session, Nashashibi said: “This is the first time in racing there has been a collaboration between a Palestinian and an Israeli in the name of peace. We want to show the rest of the world there is hope and not just war.”