Andersen Racing signs Vassmer for 2007

Andersen Racing Signs Vassmer for 2007 Star Mazda Season FAIRFIELD, N.J., Dec. 21 - Andersen Racing is pleased to announce that it has signed NASA Cooper Tires Formula Ford 2000 star Ricardo Vassmer to drive one of its cars next year in the Star...

Andersen Racing Signs Vassmer for 2007 Star Mazda Season

FAIRFIELD, N.J., Dec. 21 - Andersen Racing is pleased to announce that it has signed NASA Cooper Tires Formula Ford 2000 star Ricardo Vassmer to drive one of its cars next year in the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear.

Vassmer, 23, of Coral Springs, Fla., and Caracas, Venezuela, finished third in the Cooper Tires FF2000 series this year and he was very impressive in tests the Fairfield, N.J.-based team conducted with its Star Mazda cars recently.

"His tests were fantastic," said a happy team owner, Dan Andersen. "He's excited to be working with Remi Lanteigne, one of our engineers, whom he worked with at the tests and in an opportunity he had to run a couple of Atlantic races this year.

"Ricardo is fast," Andersen added. "Our goal is the Star Mazda championship, and we firmly believe that he's capable of achieving that for us next year."

"Andersen Racing is the most professional team I've worked with," Vassmer said. "I get along well with everyone. Everyone wants to win as much as I do. I believe I can win and I believe I'm with a team that can win. All we need is luck and consistency."

Vassmer is slated to participate in a test next Thursday, Dec. 28, at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Fla., and Jan. 2-3 at Sebring International in Sebring, Fla., site of the season opener March 16.

"We'll use the same set-ups that we used this year to win the pole [Brad Jaeger] and the race [Gerardo Bonilla] at Sebring," Andersen noted.

The test in January will be Vassmer's first at Sebring in a Star Mazda car, but he's tested there in a Zetec Formula Ford 2000 car. "It's fun," he said of the historic 3.7-mile, 17-turn road course. "Whether you're going to have a good lap or not all depends on how you get through Turn One. If you're fast in Turn One, you'll be fast everywhere. You just have to get used to the bumps, that's all."

Vassmer said that the primary sponsors of his season-long effort will be announced later.

Andersen Racing has developed a unique, three-tier program to prepare drivers for careers as Indy Racing League and/or Champ Car World Series drivers. It has a structured program that utilizes the Hankook Tires Formula Ford 2000 series, the Star Mazda series, and the Indy Pro series to give young drivers the training they'll need to reach the major leagues. The team plans to run multiple cars in each series next year, and is currently interviewing potential drivers.

The team's Web site is undergoing reconstruction but it can be accessed at andersenracingteam.com. Vassmer's Web site is at ricardovassmer.com. More information on the series can be found at starmazda.com.

-credit: ar

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Series Pro Mazda
Drivers Gerardo Bonilla