MAXIMUM ATTACK! Edinburgh, Scotland -- 19 February 2007: The Scuderia Ecosse team has thrown down the gauntlet to its rivals by announcing a formidable driver line-up for its 2007 FIA GT Championship campaign. The Scottish squad will again run...
Edinburgh, Scotland -- 19 February 2007: The Scuderia Ecosse team has thrown down the gauntlet to its rivals by announcing a formidable driver line-up for its 2007 FIA GT Championship campaign. The Scottish squad will again run two Ferrari 430s; one to be raced by Chris Niarchos and Andrew Kirkaldy, and one to be driven by Tim Mullen and new recruits, Tomas Enge and Jarek Janis. In addition to a strong driver line-up, Scuderia Ecosse has entered into an exciting new partnership with Pirelli which will see the team working very closely with the Italian manufacturer to get the very best on-track results.
Tomas Enge is one of the best drivers on the market; he is also one of busiest, having already competed in two A1GP races and the Daytona 24 Hours since the start of the year. Tomas will drive for the team at seven of the ten FIA GT rounds in 2007. When he is away on ALMS duty his seat will be taken by Jarek Janis, the 23 year-old Czech sensation who took two FIA GT victories in 2006. Jarek will also compete for Scuderia Ecosse at the Spa 24 Hours.
Team Principal, Stewart Roden, explains his choices: "We are very clear on what we want to achieve in the FIA GT Championship this year. We want the title and I believe this line-up will deliver. Tim (Mullen) gets his shot at the title this year and has two hugely talented team-mates to help him get there. Tomas (Enge) is an incredible driver with a lot of experience and Jarek (Janis) is without doubt the rising star of GT racing. We already have a great team and I feel that these two will bring a new enthusiasm that will keep us on our upward path. Chris (Niarchos) has improved massively over the last three years under the tutelage of Tim. We decided to pair him with Andrew (Kirkaldy) in 2007 as the combination of Andrew's all-out speed and proven ability as a driver coach will provide Chris with what he needs to move to the next level. We've also moved over to Pirelli tyres and are very pleased to be starting a new technical partnership with them; the Championship will be tight this year so we will be working together very closely."
Tim Mullen is looking forward to going for the Championship in 2007. "This is an incredible opportunity for me. After driving with Chris for so long it's going to be strange to have him as competition. I may yet regret teaching him too much! I can't wait to get stuck in and I'm so pleased to be racing with drivers of the calibre of Tomas and Jarek. We've got everything we need to get the job done!"
Tomas Enge has a busy year ahead as his FIA GT campaign runs alongside a full ALMS season in another Ferrari 430. "This is a big new challenge for me: doing two GT series on two continents in the same car. I'm looking forward to working with Tim (Mullen) and getting the maximum out of the Ferrari. I want to win!"
Jarek Janis took the GT world by storm last year with his fantastic performances in the FIA GT Championship. "I'm very pleased to be driving with Scuderia Ecosse," said the young Czech. "This is a new experience for me as I haven't raced a Ferrari 430 before. I am happy to be driving for a successful team and I believe that we can do very well."
"This is going to be a great year for us," said Chris Niarchos. "Tim, who has taught me so much over the last few years, now has a great opportunity to go for the title so I'm pleased for him. I'm really looking forward to learning from Andrew now and continuing to improve as a driver."
"It's going to be a lot of fun driving with Chris," according to Andrew Kirkaldy. "I'm sure I can teach him a thing or two but, knowing Chris, I'm sure he'll be teaching me a lot of things too! There are a couple of things that I noticed last year that I know will help him; I could have told him last year but he might have beaten me then!"
After winning the British GT Championship (Kirkaldy/Kinch 2005, Niarchos/Mullen 2006) for the last two years the team has moved away from national competition in 2007 and will concentrate its efforts on the FIA GT Championship and the Le Mans 24 Hours. The driver line-up for Le Mans will be announced in due course.
The Scuderia Ecosse team will be at Monza later this week for the FIA GT media day and test. It looks like 2007 could well be their best year yet!
-credit: scuderia ecosse