24 Mar PK Carsport www.POWERKIT.shop team returns to NASCAR with high ambitions
TEAM RELEASE – The PK Carsport powerhouse will be once again among the contenders for the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series titles and trophies during the 2018 season. Anthony Kumpen and Stienes Longin will defend the colors of the glorious Belgian team in ELITE 1, Guillaume Dumarey and Brazilian Felipe Rabello will start in ELITE 2.
The 2018 season of the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series cannot start fast enough for the Hasselt-based team. “Our ambitions are clear”, says two-time champion Anthony Kumpen. “We want to compete for the title in each category. To achieve this we have two completely reconstructed cars. We tried small things and tested them in Zolder during the winter. The Details can make a real difference, you know.”
The NASCAR Whelen Euro Series has become increasingly stronger in recent years. This is also the case for 2018. “The level keeps getting higher,” Kumpen says. “That’s a good thing for the championship and does not change our ambitions. We can count on our experience. I want to get that ELITE 1 title back. Apparently I can only win it in even years, so I’m fine for 2018. (laughs) No, seriously now: the title is incredibly important. This year I attended Daytona as a spectator, but I prefer to be able to drive myself. And to accomplish that, I will have to become champion a third time.”
However, Kumpen is not the only PK Carsport driver who starts the ELITE 1 season with high expectations.
“In the three full seasons of NASCAR I’ve raced so far, I’ve always achieved my goals”, explains Stienes Longin. “I am well aware that the bar will be even higher this year. I want to score as high as possible, be on the podium as often as possible. We will see how high that will bring me, but I will not rule anything out. The level of the championship is rising again, I think it is an excellent thing. It will also ensure that we ourselves perform better. Last winter I worked hard to prepare myself physically and mentally on this season and that has already produced results. During a test day last week I immediately felt very good at the wheel of the car, I had the right speed to tackle. A good sign, already.”
After a first season in ELITE 2 in 2017 in which he became vice-champion, Guillaume Dumarey would not find it uncomfortable to climb one more step of the ladder this year. “I will do everything I can to achieve that”, says Dumarey. “But in ELITE 2 too, it will be tough. My new teammate Felipe Rabello ended up third in the championship last year, so he also has high ambitions. And then there are the new names for this season. No idea what those guys are worth, but I suspect that the start of the season will not be insignificant. With our experience we should be able to make the difference on those new drivers.”
Dumarey has also focused on a thorough physical preparation in recent months. “I have done a lot of strength training,” says the Eastern Fleming. “An excellent addition to the cardio exercises I have done for some time. Although our races last about 40 minutes, you really have to work hard on the wheel of such a car. Then you better be ready for it. I think I succeeded in that. I am already looking forward to the start of the season in Valencia.”
The new addition to the PK Carsport lineup will be Felipe Rabello, who finished third in point in the ELITE 2 Division and won twice in his oval racing debut. “I learned a lot in my first season and I am feeling very confident this year, working with a great team such as PK carsport. I am very happy to be part of it,” said the Belo Horizonte native. “I believe I will be a strong contender for the title in the ELITE 2 division, but i know that it will be a tough battle because of the high level of the competition. Racing is unpredictable, but we will do our best to achieve our goals. I really enjoy the racing and the organization of Euro NASCAR and I can’t wait to start the season.”
In addition to their ambitions for the ELITE 1, ELITE 2 and team titles, Kumpen & Co also have a side project they set their sights on. “This year, for the first time, there will be a Nations’ Cup in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series”, explains the Hasselt-native. “You can count on us to defend Belgian colors with verve!”
In the run-up to the start of the season in Valencia (April 14-15), PK Carsport will take a final test on the Zolder circuit on March 29th. Two days earlier, on March 27, the cars will be presented to the public in the Heinz Performance workshop in Hasselt in combination with the launch of the new webshop www.powerkit.shop , where Heinz Performance and PK Carsport bundle more than 25 years of racing and tuning experience into products for every car enthusiast. The new merchandising of the team will also be available on the webshop before the start of the season.