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Lamborghini Squadra Corse has unveiled the new intake of drivers into its Young Driver and GT3 Junior Programs for the 2020 season. A total of 34 drivers has been announced, making it the most comprehensive development programme in GT racing.
A key element of the racing division of Automobili Lamborghini, the brand’s Youngster Programs have provided up-and-coming drivers a tangible career path into the world of GT racing since 2014, courtesy of its Young Driver Program and GT3 Junior Program.
The Young Drivers Program is dedicated to drivers under 26 engaged in each of the four Lamborghini Super Trofeo championships held globally; the GT3 Junior Program is the next step, reserved to drivers racing in the GT championships worldwide behind the wheel of the Huracán GT3 Evo.
The most impressive drivers within the programs will be invited to participate in a final selection shoot-out held within the end of the year in Italy. And the drivers of each program who impress the selection panel the most during the three day evaluation, will go on to receive official support from Lamborghini Squadra Corse for the 2020 season.
Led by former Lamborghini Factory Driver Raffaele Giammaria, the Youngsters Programs offer a complete package for young talent, from media management to on-track instruction without neglecting physical preparation, under the tutoring of Emanuele Pirro, five times 24 Hours of Le Mans winner.
The Young Driver Program
The bulk of this year’s intake come from Super Trofeo Europe, the one-make championship reserved for Lamborghini Huracán ST Evos, with three of the 16 members coming from Super Trofeo North America.
Divided into two parts, the Young Driver Program members are selected by Giammaria and observed throughout the season by their respective Lamborghini championships before being assessed at the end of the year.
The most promising driver from the assessment is picked following the culmination of a bespoke test and gets promoted to the GT3 Junior Programme, which offers a Factory supported drive in a regional GT championship.
Full List of Young Driver Program Members
Steven Aghakhani (17) - USA
Sebastian Balthasar (23) – Germany
Dorian Boccolacci (21) - France
Jonathan Cecotto (21) - Venezuela
Jacob Eidson (25) - USA
Damiano Fioravanti (24) - Italy
Raul Guzman (20) – Mexico
Patrick Liddy (23) - USA
Stuart Middleton (20) – UK
Elias Niskanen (20) - Finland
Marcus Påverud (20) - Norway
Guillem Pujeu (19) - Spain
Kevin Rossel (25) - Denmark
Vincent Schwartz (23) - Germany
Yuri Wagner (19) – Luxembourg
Max Weering (20) – Netherlands
GT3 Junior Program
The winner of the Young Driver Program assessment at the end of 2019 was Dutchman Danny Kroes. The touring car convert, who won the Super Trofeo Europe title in his debut season last year, is now a member of the GT3 Junior Programme and is launching an assault on the Italian GT Sprint and Endurance championships in 2020.
He is joined by Super Trofeo World Finals winner Frederik Schandorff, who already has a year’s experience in GT3 racing last year. The Dane will combine a season of Italian GT for Vincenzo Sospiri Racing and the Endurance element of GT World Challenge Europe with British outfit Barwell Motorsport. Lamborghini newcomers Leonardo Pulcini, Florian Latorre, Baptiste Moulin and Tuomas Tujula join veterans Andrea Amici, Alberto di Folco and Corey Lewis. Other impressive up-and-coming members include Super Trofeo World Finals runner-up Sandy Mitchell, Taylor Proto, Yuki Nemoto and Afiq Yazid.
The GT3 Juniors will also be monitored throughout the season and assessed at the end of the year, with the possibility of moving up to the Lamborghini Factory Driver Programme. Dennis Lind was the first to complete the journey from Young Driver to Factory Driver, in 2019, while Giacomo Altoè also followed the same path.
Full List of GT3 Junior Members
Andrea Amici (27) - Italy
Alberto Di Folco (24) - Italy
Kikko Galbiati (21) - Italy
Danny Kroes (20) – Netherlands
Florian Latorre (23) - France
Corey Lewis (28) - USA
Lucas Mauron (22) - Switzerland
Sandy Mitchell (20) – UK
Baptiste Moulin (20) - Belgium
Yuki Nemoto (23) - Japan
Taylor Proto (22) – UK
Leonardo Pulcini (22) – Italy
Frederik Schandorff (23) – Denmark
Steijn Schothorst (25) – Netherlands
Madison Snow (24) - USA
Tuomas Tujula (23) - Finland
Afiq Yazid (29) – Malaysia
Tim Zimmermann (23) - Germany