The Italian Team Switches From An Aston Martin GT Program to NWES In 2018
The competition in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series keeps getting tougher as another titled and combative team joins the field for the 2018 season: former Aston Martin GT3 team Solaris Motorsport will join the European NASCAR Series with its #12 Chevrolet.
“We have been looking at the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series since a few years. We followed it as it grew to be one of the most important touring car series in Europe and we are very happy to join it in 2018,” said co-owner/driver Francesco Sini, who had the chance to test a NWES car on December 4 at the Autodromo di Franciacorta, in the context of the second Italian Recruitment Day and was impressed by its handling. “The car is awesome and we love the fact that there’s a lot of people at every event, plus the series has a fantastic cost-effective formula. Everywhere else in racing money has become the only thing that matters, but in NASCAR we can still find that passion for the sport that drives all of us at Solaris Motorsport.”
“We are very happy to welcome such a professional team and passionate racing family in NWES,” explained NWES President / CEO Jerome Galpin. “100% of drivers who tested our Euro NASCAR cars during the Recruitments Days were really surprised by how good and fun they are to drive and they enjoyed the experience a lot ! Francesco was among them and he showed very good skills and true passion for pure racing. We wish him and his family all the best for their NASCAR debut.”
Solaris Motorsport is run by the Sini family with Roberto Sini as Team Owner, Laura Sini as Team Manager and has Francesco Sini as its star driver in the ELITE 1 Division. The Italian team features a strong bond with American muscle cars since building a Chevrolet Camaro for the SuperStar Series, where they won the title in 2014 before switching to GT racing. Solaris fielded a Camaro and a Corvette in GT3 championships across Europe, moving then to Aston Martin in the Italian GT Championship and the International GT Open.
The 2018 NWES season represents a return to something very familiar for the entire Sini family and the tight-knit group of mechanics working on the cars in Pescara: American V8 power.
“To go back to an American engine is fantastic for us, we grew up with a V8 and it’s what made us a strong. It is heart and passion for us, but also a logic choice,” said Sini. “I think that without any electronic aid, the NWES car really puts the driver and the team in the spotlight. Being back to a more muscular driving style is attractive for me and I hope that after a few years driving cars with ABS, traction control and so on, I’m still capable of doing my best and running up front.”
Solaris Motorsport made its racing in 2007 by winning the Italian Prototype Series and the Radical World Cup with Sini in the cockpit, who also took the team to the first step of podium in the Radical European Masters in 2008.
Francesco Sini expects a solid first season in NASCAR for the team and himself in 2018.
“I would love to say that I want to win from the beginning, but I have to be realistic and I know the competition is exceptionally strong, there are lots of strong teams and for sure we will need experience, but I’m confident we can do pretty well,” concluded the Italian driver. “There are at least three events I particularly look forward to. Franciacorta because it will be our home race, Hockenheim because I love the track and I won there the EuroV8 title and then the Oval World Challenge, because I never ran on an oval and I’m really curious to know what I can do.”
The team is currently working on completing its lineup with an ELITE 2 driver in preparation for the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series season opener taking place in Valencia, Spain at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo on April 14-15.