Fresh from its successful 2014 international campaign, reigning Winter Cup champions, Strawberry Racing, return to defend its Junior, Senior and DD2 crowns with an ambitious young squad.
Announcing the 2015 line-up from the team’s base in Sheffield, England, Strawberry’s Team Manager Warwick Ringhamrevealed a mix of proven regulars and exciting newcomers.
Aussie ace Pierce Lehane joins Englishman Josh Price and Ireland’s Gary Donnelly to spearhead the works Tony Kart outfits Senior Max campaign.
“Pierce is very highly rated, not least because of his four Australian national titles,” says Ringham. “He wants to prove himself in Europe and has chosen us as the team to help him achieve that goal.”
He added: “Lehane will be pushed hard by both Price and Donnelly. Josh ended his European season with victory in the Rotax Open at Zuera, while Gary demonstrated how much he improved as a driver last year, with a brace of Super One podiums.”
The team has one remaining berth in the Senior ranks, which Ringham is keen to fill in time for February’s Rotax Winter Cup (9-15): “We’d like to field four drivers at Campillos and throughout the full Euro Max season. Naturally, we’re talking to several interested parties.
Last year’s regulars Axel Charpentier, Jack McCarthy and Dean McDonald are back to lead Strawberry’s tilt for Junior glory. They are joined by the highly-rated Kiern Jewiss, who steps up from the Cadet ranks, and Josh Skelton.
Dean finished 3rd overall in last year’s Euro Max Challenge, with Jack 8th - both having acquitted themselves well in their debut season abroad. At home, MacDonald won the Super One Mini Max title against strong opposition, whilst McCarthy placed 4th in the Junior class, also in a quality-packed field.
Josh Skelton also claimed a single-number Super One seeding for 2015, thanks to finishing 6th overall in Junior Max, but has expanded his horizons – and ambitions – by targeting the Euro Max Challenge.
French prospect Axel Charpentier focused on honing his skill in the British series last year and netted a string of consistent and impressive finishes, on his way to 7th in the Mini Max points table.
“I’m looking forward to seeing how each of the boys develops throughout the season,” Warwick says. “They’ve all got pace and have all the qualities to be very good indeed. Our job will be to make sure that they carry on making progress and are consistent front-runners challenging for race wins and podiums.”
Strawberry’s sole representative in DD2, Constantin Schoell, will be a new name to many, although the Austrian teenager is an accomplished racer and finished 10th in the 2014 International Open at Zuera.
“Constantin only switched to DD2 at the last round of the Euro Max at Salbris but did well for a comparative beginner by finishing 12th,” explains Ringham. “He then backed this up with his top ten result in Spain and I think that convinced him to look at a more permanent move into the class. We’ve proved over the past two seasons, since we’ve been competing in European DD2, that we can help our guys deliver on their ability and promise. We hope to be able to do that again with Constantin.”
With the countdown to the Rotax Winter Cup already begun, call Warwick now for more information about joining Strawberry Racing in 2015, on 0114 288 9933.