On May 15-16, the 2021 season of the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series will kick off at the iconic Circuit Ricardo Tormo of Valencia, Spain. Since the inception of Europe’s official NASCAR series, drivers and teams from around the world have joined the series to compete in the best touring car series on the Old Continent. In the 2021 season opener, a total of 50 drivers and 30 cars are ready for battle representing 16 different countries.
Having made its debut in the NWES calendar in 2012, the Circuit Ricardo Tormo will reach a unique milestone by becoming the first track to host 10 EuroNASCAR events. The Spanish road course will return to its traditional season opening slot and be the first benchmark for teams and drivers to measure the hard work they did in the winter break.
EuroNASCAR PRO: a world-class field and plenty of favorites
The EuroNASCAR PRO field is once again impressive and filled with world-class top drivers. Three-time champion Alon Day holds the record for the most wins at Valencia among active drivers with 5, but the now three-time champion will not have a simple task ahead of him. The Israeli will return to CAAL Racing after one year away from the Italian team and many will try to dethrone him, starting with former Formula 1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve and 2019 NWES champion Loris Hezemans.
As said, contenders are aplenty: seven drivers on the grid won at least one EuroNASCAR PRO and extending the list to EuroNASCAR 2 race winners, the total goes up to eleven and includes Day, Hezemans, Frederic Gabillon, Nicolò Rocca, Gianmarco Ercoli, Lucas Lasserre, Marc Goossens, Thomas Ferrando, 2020 EuroNASCAR 2 champion Vittorio Ghirelli, Ulysse Delsaux and Giorgio Maggi.
Five former EuroNASCAR 2 champions will be on the grid in EuroNASCAR PRO. Will one of them make History as the first to win both NWES championships? Will Day make History by winning an unprecedented 4th title? Will Villeneuve deliver his first NASCAR win and his first NASCAR championship? Will Gabillon finally take the crown in his final NWES season? Will Hezemans deliver a second championship? The questions are many but the NWES champion will be only one!
The Junior Trophy will see four drivers chase the title: Ferrando, Delsaux, Maggi and Ercoli. All four have the talent and the equipment to fight for the NWES title and the battle for the trophy dedicated to drivers aged 25 and under will add even more pathos to their season.
In the Challenger Trophy, the battle promises to be one of the most intense in the last few seasons. No less than 10 drivers will chase the trophy dedicated to Silver and Bronze competitors in EuroNASCAR PRO. Davide Dallara will look to defend his title against 2019 champion Henri Tuomaala and sure contenders the likes of Sebastiaan Bleekemolen, Yevgen Sokolovskiy and 2016 champion Dario Caso.
EURONASCAR 2: all the pressure is on Dauenhauer
EuroNASCAR 2 is usually the most unpredictable championship in EuroNASCAR, but the 2021 season will start with a clear favorite: 2020 runner-up Tobias Dauenhauer. With three wins in his rookie season, the young German will be the man to beat, but the challengers will be many and the first one will be his teammate Martin Doubek, who broke through in 2020 with two wins and will aim at the championship right from the start in Valencia.
The two Hendriks Motorsport drivers will be the only EuroNASCAR 2 winners in the field, but the record book could change quickly as many up-and-coming talents will aim for Victory lane: Vladimiros Tziortzis, Simon Pilate, Francesco Garisto, Justin Kunz, returnees Advait Deodhar, Pierluigi Veronesi, Naveh Talor and many more.
Arianna Casoli will start the season poised to defend the Legend Trophy she won in 2020 and reconquer the Lady Trophy. In the classification for drivers aged 40 and over, the Italian will have plenty of competition from 12 other drivers including last year’s runner-up Yevgen Sokolovskiy, 2019 champion Ian Eric Waden, Michael Bleekemolen and new entries the likes of Max Lanza and Miguel Gomes.
The Rookie Trophy will feature four contenders: Italians Alberto Panebianco and Paolo Valeri, Finnish Drivers Recruitment Program alumnus Leevi Lintukantu and Alina Loibnegger from Austria, who will also battle with Casoli for the Lady Trophy.
The 2021 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series season will officially kick off on May 15-16 at the iconic Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, Spain. Due to the real-life impact – the first ever connection between Sim Racing and real racing in international motorsports – of the 2021 EuroNASCAR Esports Series, the #50 Ford Mustang by Hendriks Motorsport is already leading the Team Championship’s standings because Tobias Dauenhauer collected 40 points by winning the title in the virtual world on iRacing. Qualifying and all races will be broadcasted live on EuroNASCAR’s social media profiles – YouTube, Facebook, Twitch – and Motorsport.tv.