Pagenaud impresses in Atlantics testing New Atlantic introduction has French racer hungry (24 February 2006)----Last week's introduction of the new-spec Atlantic car has stoked a fire that was already burning brightly for young French racer...
Pagenaud impresses in Atlantics testing
New Atlantic introduction has French racer hungry
(24 February 2006)----Last week's introduction of the new-spec Atlantic car has stoked a fire that was already burning brightly for young French racer Simon Pagenaud, who is working to find his way on the Atlantics grid for the 2006 season with a keen eye on a graduation to Champ Car in 2007.
Pagenaud has several successful Atlantic tests under his belt, most recently with the Newman/Wachs team in Jupiter, Florida.
"The team was professional, and I was really satisfied with my driving because even though it was my first time on the track and I only had a limited amount of time in the car, I was able to get up to speed quickly and set some very competitive times," said Pagenaud. "I felt quite good in the car, and if I drive like this in 2006, it will be a very good year for me."
Pagenaud, who narrowly missed out on winning the 2004 Formula Renault Eurocup Championship to American Scott Speed, made the step up to run the full World Series by Renault season in 2005, racing at tracks like Monaco, LeMans, Monza, and Donington in the 425-horsepower Renault/Dallara machines and taking three top-fives in the highly competitive category.
The new Atlantic combination, which boasts a 300-hp Mazda-Cosworth powerplant mated to the new Swift 016a, recently passed its first on-track testing with flying colors, and Pagenaud is anxious to try the machine out himself.
"I expect to find a deal with a team quite soon and hope to give an announcement about my future in few weeks," said Pagenaud. "It has been a great opportunity for me to show my skill of driving and I am thankful that the team created this opportunity. This new season in Atlantic will be very exciting and I am motivated as ever for giving my best and graduate to champ car in 2007 and join my friend Sebastian Bourdais in this series. "
The Champ Car Atlantic series will reward the 2006 series champion with a significant $2 million dollar bonus towards a Champ Car campaign, and will also feature a new car/engine combination with a new-design Swift chassis mated to a 300-hp Cosworth.