Damian Cudlin will replace injured Vincent Philippe in the Suzuki Endurance Racing Team at this weekend’s Suzuka 8-Hour World Endurance Championship second round in Japan.
The 33-year-old Australian SERT stand-in rider joined reigning World Champions Anthony Delhalle and Erwan Nigon at the official Suzuka test at the beginning of the month as Philippe recovers from a serious arm injury sustained during the opening round at the Bol d’Or in April.
Team Manager Dominique Meliand said: “Vincent has had a few problems recovering from his injury and will have to undergo another operation, but we can rely on Damian, who will do anything to keep his place, although he must reduce errors, prevent any falls and face a very high level of competitors. But he is a man who has every chance of succeeding.
"Suzuka is a special race for us because it is held on a fabulous track; one of the most beautiful in the world, it’s big and it is fast. The hot and humid climatic conditions are also very-much part of the challenges that we face up-to in this race because the physical conditions are very different from those encountered on the European circuits."
SERT will be supported by the Suzuki factory at the 37th Coca Cola Zero-sponsored event with a strong turn-out of Suzuki Motor Corporation employees and management being present for what looks to be one of the most hotly-contested events in its history.
A full event preview to follow later this week with details of the other top Suzuki contenders including the two Yoshimura Suzuki and Kagayama teams.