The Silverstone-based Hitech Junior Team will be renamed for next year following a partnership with CRS Racing. The David Hayle-led outfit, which won the Superleague Formula by Sonangol Championship and finished runner-up in the Michelin Formula Renault UK Winter Cup, will be renamed ATECH Grand Prix.Hitech Junior Team’s already confirmed entry into the new FIA GP3 Championship however will now run under the ATECH CRS banner while its entry in the Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship will take on the ATECH Grand Prix name.
This partnership follows a season in which the two teams have worked together successfully in Formula Renault. Aside from the name change, there will be no major changes to the day-to-day running of the team, with Hayle remaining at the helm.
“In order to remain in contention for winning races and championships you need to prepare well and invest well, just as we did in Superleague this season,” said Hayle. “This will apply especially in GP3 for 2010. I had been in discussions with Chris for some time regarding this project as he is someone whom I have long-admired in sports car racing, and he was able to offer exactly what was needed.
“As a team owner, I have competed at the top, in domestic and international racing up to and including GP2, with some top-line drivers and that will remain the aim of this new partnership. Nothing else will change except for the name in both our entry into the FIA GP3 Championship and Formula Renault UK. “We will remain operating from our Silverstone workshops, and all team personnel will stay. So too will our desire to win races and championships, which has always been of paramount importance.”
Niarchos too was equally enthusiastic about the new partnership: “David and I spoke some time ago about the prospect of working together. When he called to say he had a GP3 entry I put the proposition to him to combine forces. It is the perfect fit commercially, technically and in so many different ways. I’m hugely excited about the new partnership.
“The new team will embody all of the high standards and professionalism that both teams are known for. I have to say that the more I get to know David the more I see what we have in common. Both of us wanted to continue to build in single-seaters so this was a great place to start.”
CRS Team Director, Andrew Kirkaldy added: “We have always wanted to add a rung to our single-seater ladder and GP3 is the perfect choice for CRS. We are an ambitious team and we plan to continue to grow our single-seater and sports car programmes.”
In just his first year as a team owner, Hayle managed the team to the Champion of Asia crown following victory in the end of season Korean F3 Grand Prix and later guided Marko Asmer to the British Formula 3 Championship. This year in Superleague the team took more victories than any other team, while in International Formula Master took victory in just its third race.
The new team has a number of other projects currently under consideration for 2010 which it hopes to announce in the coming weeks.