USA: Hearn Motorsports names Jules Duc for 2006

Hearn Motorsports Announces Duc as First Piece of '06 Puzzle LAS VEGAS, Nev., November 16, 2005 -- Richie Hearn (Henderson, Nev.) revealed the first piece of the puzzle for his open wheel racing program today with the announcement that driver...

Hearn Motorsports Announces Duc as First Piece of '06 Puzzle

LAS VEGAS, Nev., November 16, 2005 -- Richie Hearn (Henderson, Nev.) revealed the first piece of the puzzle for his open wheel racing program today with the announcement that driver Jules Duc (Los Gatos, Calif.) will pilot one of his Formula BMW USA Series entries in 2006. Hearn Motorsports will be making their debut in Formula BMW USA next season after two years entering cars in the Star Mazda Championship. It will be Duc's second season of Formula BMW USA competition. Duc, 15, is the first driver announced to what Hearn anticipates being a three-car program in the entry-level, professional formula car series next year. The Champ Car and IndyCar standout continues to evaluate other drivers for his '06 plans and anticipates making additional announcements soon.

"I met Jules about a year ago when he was just starting to race," said Hearn about his latest prospect. "He had no experience racing anything then. Since then he has a lot of progress. He has a lot of talent; a natural ability. He just doesn't have a lot of experience racing. I think he has a great future. He listens well and he is really committed to racing. He fits perfectly into what we are trying to do. I think he could definitely be a future Champ Car driver considering how far he has come in less than a year. We are really looking at this to be a long-term deal with Jules. I'm excited to be signing him as our first driver for '06 and I'm looking forward to working with him and coaching him."

The young driver has been under Hearn's driving guidance for nearly a full season and has made dramatic improvement since approaching the 1995 Formula Atlantic Champion for coaching assistance. 2005 marked the first season of competition for Duc in any form of motorsports. In fact, prior to entering the season-opening round of the 2005 Formula BMW USA season at Laguna Seca last April, Duc had only a three-day school at Skip Barber and Derek Daly's school- based just down from the Hearn Motorsports shop- on his racing resume.

Hearn will waste little time getting Duc on track. He anticipates beginning to test with Duc within weeks in the spec-series BMW-powered formula car. The two have been testing and racing over the last several months with Hearn's No. 70 Star Mazda. Duc showed himself well at a recent race in the car at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. In his first appearance in the rotary-powered car, and his first time at Infineon against seasoned racers, Duc won his first career event setting times better than his two pilots put in during the Star Mazda event there in July.

In 2005, Duc finished 26th in Formula BMW USA points overall and 17th in the rookie standings. He ran in 12 of the 14 rounds- spread across seven tracks- with a high finish of 14th.

Hearn's second year team debuted in 2004 in the Star Mazda Series and has scored multiple podium finishes and one victory, this year at Mosport International Raceway, since that time.

For more on Hearn Motorsports please visit www.richiehearn.com.

To learn more about the Formula BMW USA Series, click on www.FormulaBMWUSA.com.

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Series Formula BMW
Drivers Richie Hearn , Derek Daly , Jules Duc