Jean-Karl Vernay news 2010-03-05

New Horizons for Jean-Karl Vernay Sports Management Company CJ Motorsport which represents Drivers and Sponsors throughout the World of Motorsport announced today that they have signed driver Jean-Karl Vernay for full...

New Horizons for Jean-Karl Vernay

Sports Management Company CJ Motorsport which represents Drivers and Sponsors throughout the World of Motorsport announced today that they have signed driver Jean-Karl Vernay for full representation.

"Having built a solid reputation over the last few years within the Motorsport community by focusing on a select group of super talented drivers such as Franck Perera and Sam Bird, CJ Motorsport is proud to welcome Jean-Karl into the CJ Driver family" said Director Serge Celebidachi.

Twenty-two year-old Vernay will be joining Sam Schmidt Motorsports for the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights campaign.

Previously a member of the Red Bull Junior Team, the Frenchman comes to the American open-wheel series after spending his junior career racing in Europe, most recently in the Formula 3 Euro Series where he won two races in 2009. His most recent career highlight was finishing second in the famed Macau GP late in 2009, on his rookie outing.

US Director of CJ Motorsport Charles Barrett: "For his first season in the US we are very excited to combine J.K.'s experience and talent with the know-how and multiple Championship winning pedigree of Sam Schmidt Motorsports and Engineer Tim Neff."

"I'm very excited to come to America this season to race in Firestone Indy Lights with Sam Schmidt Motorsports," Vernay said. "I also want to thank my managers at CJ Motorsport and my sponsors for making it possible, along with the people at Volkswagen for encouraging me to go."

Vernay has completed four tests to date with Sam Schmidt Motorsports. He has sampled the extreme driving challenges of the Firestone Indy Lights schedule having taken part in his first laps on an oval at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, following that up with laps on the road course at Palm Beach International Raceway, before completing pre-season testing at Barber Motorsports Park and Sebring International Raceway.

Vernay said, "Our testing has very much focused on development and set-up work. Coming from a different car and different tyres, it's all about getting the best performance out of the package. From that point of view, we've made some really good progress. These few days' testing have also given my engineer and myself the opportunity to get to know each other better and I believe we can achieve great things together. I can't wait to get the season started."

"J.K.'s experience and results in Europe are excellent, so we are quite pleased he has decided to further his career in the United States," team owner Sam Schmidt said. "We tested him at Homestead and Palm Beach and everything just clicked. The chemistry between JK and the team was excellent from the start and we're confident he'll be a great fit for the Sam Schmidt Motorsports organization in 2010."

Though new to racing in America, Vernay is no stranger to competitive open-wheel racing. He has spent the last few years in various Formula 3 and Formula Renault series, along with having done four races in A1GP with Team France between 2006 and 2007.

"There are not a lot of drivers who have the potential to win the Firestone Indy Lights title in their first season when transitioning to ovals," Charles Barrett, one of Vernay's managers at CJ Motorsport, said. "After watching JK's first oval test and also knowing that he came in second in Macau in his rookie outing last year, I have no doubt that he has the racing talent, experience, and guts required to be a leading contender for the championship in his first season ."

-source: CJ Motorsport

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Sam Schmidt , Sam Bird , Jean-Karl Vernay , Franck Perera