Series news 2010-03-21

Tambay, Gachnang and Ho-Pin Tung join Charouz-Gravity Racing Charouz-Gravity Racing has completed its Auto GP line-up. On the team's cars, painted in the Renault F.1 colours, Adrian Tambay and Natacha Gachnang will race alongside the ...

Tambay, Gachnang and Ho-Pin Tung join Charouz-Gravity Racing

Charouz-Gravity Racing has completed its Auto GP line-up. On the team's cars, painted in the Renault F.1 colours, Adrian Tambay and Natacha Gachnang will race alongside the already confirmed Jan Charouz and Walter Grubmuller, with Ho-Pin Tung as the team's reserve driver. So, there are two talented new entries in Auto GP, whose grid becomes more and more interesting day after day. With Tambay and Gachnang, the championship welcomes two young drivers with a vast international experience, who decided to prove themselves taming the 550 bhp of the Auto GP Lola-Zytek car.

Adrien Tambay, 19 years-old, is son of Patrick, F.1 driver from 1977 to 1986 for teams like Renault, McLaren and Ferrari, with two GP wins. Despite such a big heritage, Adrien quickly managed to build his own image relying on his talent when he stated with single seaters: he was the best rookie and 4th overall in the F.Bmw Germany in 2007, and the following year he got back in Europe, to race in the European F.Bmw. Under the F1 manager's eyes, Adrien was among the top runners, closing the season in 3rd place with 2 wins, 9 podium finishes and 2 pole positions. In 2009 he raced in the hyper-competitive F3 Euroseries, a championship which was very important to prepare him for the Auto GP challenge.

Natacha Gachnang, 22 years-old, is from Switzerland. In spite of coming from a country were motor racing is prohibited, her passion for motorsport grew quickly. Consequently, Natacha started challenging her male competitors on the tracks, all over the world. Despite being so young, Natacha already raced in the USA, and throughout her career she's been a consistent podium finisher. She got three podiums in the German F3, four in the Star Mazda, while in her best season, 2008, she even managed to lead the overall standings of the Spanish F3 championship. In the first race of the year she got the pole position, getting four podium finishes and two fastest laps before the end of the season. In 2009 she raced in Formula Two, and also in Sportscars with the Formula Le Mans.

Auto GP will be a new challenge for her, and even something more for the history of women in motorsport. That's because it will be the first time since 1992, when Giovanna Amati tried to qualify in three F1 races with Brabham, that an European female driver takes the wheel of such a powerful single seater.

Gachnang and Tambay join two more experienced drivers like Jan Charouz and Walter Grubmuller.

Jan Charouz starts the 2010 season as an official test and reserve driver for the Renault F1 Team. Last year, he won the Le Mans Series LM P1 Championship title helped by two victories in the Barcelona and Nurburgring 1000kms. He also finished fourth overall in the mythic Le Mans 24 Hours. Jan's talent did not go unnoticed by the FIA, which presented him with the FIA 2009 Talent of the Year award, and he also received the Jiri Sedlar Award for the best Czech Racing Driver of the Year in the under 23-year-old category. Before racing sports cars, the Czech driver met with success in single-seaters winning the 2006 F3000 International Masters Series in both the overall and Rookie Classifications. He also represented the Czech Republic in A1GP and tested in the GP2 Series. He started winning early on in his career. In 2002, he became the youngest victor in the history of the Czech Touring Car Championship. Jan has decided to come back to single-seaters, and will race in the Auto GP Championship as well as the World Series by Renault.

Walter Grubmuller has been racing single-seaters since 2005. He gained experience in the Formula Renault and Asian Formula 3 Series. Since 2007, he has been competing in the British F3 Championship. In 2009, he had his best season ever with two victories (Hockenheim and Donington) plus seven more podium finishes with the UK-based HiTech Racing team. Walter finished the year second overall in the British F3 ratings. This year, he has the same programme as Jan Charouz, the Auto GP Championship and the World Series by Renault.

What they said:

Enzo Coloni: "We are happy that Charouz-Gravity Racing decided to complete their line-up with such talented drivers. Adrien already showed what he can do winning in F.Bmw, and he has everything is needed to be fast also on a bigger car like Auto GP. Natacha, after competing in Formula 2, will finally drive a really performing and powerful car. She already managed to beat her male competitors, and also in 2010 she won't miss the chance. With this two joining Charouz and Grubmuller, the team has a very competitive and balanced line-up".

Antonin Charouz: "It's a joint project with our team and the owners of the Renault F1 team, and we greatly appreciate the confidence that they've shown in us. We have young drivers in our line-up; they are all highly talented and they really want to succeed. I'm sure it will be a very interesting season".

Jan Charouz: "I'm looking forward to racing in the Auto GP Championship. Of course, we don't exactly know yet how all the drivers will perform in this series, but I'm sure the races will be very interesting. I know the car from A1GP; it's been upgraded and has better aerodynamics and tyres. For me, it's another good opportunity to gain valuable experience. For sure, we'll also be fighting for good results and, of course, I'm looking very forward to the opening race of the season on the Brno circuit".

Walter Grubmuller: "To be honest, at this moment I'm very curious about my rivals and I'm looking forward to the championship. I like the car which we'll race in the series, because it's a bit more powerful than the ones I've driven in the past. I think I will gain a lot of useful experience in Auto GP."

Natacha Gachnang: "The Gravity-Charouz Racing team will give me the opportunity to race in a single-seater series this year, which will make my overall programme very interesting. With GT1 and Auto GP, I will develop my skills further and I will certainly become a better driver".

Adrien Tambay: "A driver always wants more power and more downforce. The Auto GP car should be the quickest single-seater I've ever driven and I'm looking forward to the challenge. My aim will be to fight for victory, and I will give 100% to achieve it."

-source: auto gp

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About this article
Series Auto GP
Drivers Natacha Gachnang , Ho-Pin Tung , Walter Grubmuller , Jan Charouz , Antonin Charouz , Adrien Tambay