27.04.2012: Remember that name: Thomas Ferrando.
On April 28, at Bowman Gray Stadium, Winston-Salem, NC, USA, this young 14-year-old boy will become the first ever European
Remember that name: Thomas Ferrando.
On April 28, at Bowman Gray Stadium, Winston-Salem, NC, USA, this young 14-year-old boy will become the first ever European driver to race a NASCAR Whelen All American event! Thanks to the initiative of Team FJ which launch a new young drivers developmental program for its EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series, the European channel to NASCAR.
Due to the European regulation, no driver less than 16 is allowed to race in EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series. Trying to change his career from go-kart, Thomas Ferrando, 14, trained during the winter in a FJ-RACECAR.
According to his good performances, Team FJ, creator and promoter of EURO-RACECAR, proposed him to be the first driver for its new developmental program for young drivers to discover grassroots of NASCAR racing. Thomas Ferrando will compete the Hayes Jewelers 200 at Bowman Gray Stadium, the opening event of the 2012 season.
“For Team FJ, it is one more step in the construction of our European channel to NASCAR, explained Jerome Galpin, manager of the EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series.
With Thomas, we start the very first step specially designed for young European drivers to discover NASCAR races and to race EURO-RACECAR which is the second step of the program. Racing EURO-RACECAR will allow them to become specialist of NASCAR racing and get international recognition both in Europe and North America.
In the medium term, we target to bring Europeans drivers to the highest levels of NASCAR such as NASCAR Sprint Cup or NASCAR Nationwide Series. Thomas has first been chosen because of his motivation. He expressed the wish to race in EURO-RACECAR very young. He made several test days and did it very good. So naturally, we chose him to be the first ever driver to experience this program.”
Thomas Ferrando will have so many to discover: a modified car with open wheels, weighing 1200kilos and powered by a 650hp V8 engine; but also the Bowman Gray Stadium. This 400-meter (1/4 mile) flat oval track is considered as one of the most challenging in the USA. It is also a mythic place welcoming every Saturday night between April and August 17,000 spectators.
In 1949, it was one of the very first NASCAR short-tracks to be built. The most famous drivers and dynasties fought there: Pettys, Allisons or Earnhardts. And it is also there than Richard “the King” Petty won his 100th race. “It will certainly be one of the biggest challenges he ever faced but with what Thomas already proved, I know he can do it,” summed up Jerome Galpin.
3 Questions to Thomas Ferrando What is the motivation of a 14-year-old driver to stop go-kart to begin motorsport and more particularly EURO-RACECAR?
Go-kart is very expensive. Three years ago one of my father’s friend introduced me to Jerome Galpin. And so beginning of 2011, at the age of 12 and a half, I made my first test in FJ Racecar. It was very impressive because it was my very first experience in a racecar but it didn’t frighten me.
I was not strong enough and I had some trouble to well handle the gearbox. Since then I continue to drive one at least 1 hour per month and due to the impossibility for me to enter the Championship, we had the idea to race in the USA…
How did you get prepared to oval racing and what do you enjoy in NASCAR?
Every day I cycle and do body-building. I also trained my English a lot to be sure to be able to well understand my team and my spotter. In these races I like the speed and the show. And there is also a great rivalry between drivers. I stay cool with this challenge and what I am the most afraid of is to not understand or be understood by my team…
What are your goals for this first drive?
The very first goal is to finish the race. A good position would be a bonus but I am there to discover and learn. I expect a lot from the relation with my spotter and the understanding of the race strategy and the management of the tiredness. It is a great experience for me and I wish to thank all my partners for giving me this opportunity.
CV Thomas Ferrando
Born the 2nd of September 1997 in Pertuis (Vaucluse – France). Live in Rians (Var – France). Currently in 8th Grade in Junior High School.
2005: Beginnings in Go-kart, category minikart : PACA regional vice-champion and 4th of the French Cup. (15 races)
2006: category minikart: regional vice-champion and poleman of the French Cup’s Finale coupe in Douvrin.
2007: category minime: several podiums in regional and national races with one best bet lap time and one top 4 (best rookie) in Valence (12 races).
2008: category minime: several podiums in regional and national races. Regional vice-champion and a final 11th position in the French Championship classification.
2009: category cadet: some races in France and in the Belgian Championship in KF5. (10 races)
2010: category international KF3: Belgium’s vice-champion, enter the KF3 world cup in Portugal, qualification for the European chammpionship in England and start 2nd in the Finale of the Andrea Margutti trophy in Italie (15 races).
First test in RACECAR Euro Series at the Val de Vienne.
2011: Some races in KF3, and 10 teste days in Racecar
The Nogaro 200, first round of the 2012 EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series’ season, enjoyed either the entering drivers than the 38,000 spectators who came in Gers to watch the traditional Coupes de Pâques. Flashback on a weiter >>
Euro Racecar NASCAR Touring Series 2012 / 1. Nogaro 200En devenant de manière officielle l’Euro Racecar NASCAR Touring Series, la compétition européenne de Racecar a obtenu une totale reconnaissance de la grande famille du sto weiter >>
EURO RACECAR NASCAR TOURING SERIES NOGARO His victory in ELITE Endurance ends a perfect Nogaro 200 for Ander Vilarino in this first event of 2012 EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series, raced in front of more than 38,000 spectators. In Open Division, Martin Van Hove wins his two races. Team TFT records in Nogaro, its hometown, all the victories of the event. weiter >>
The Spanish, poleman of the ELITE Sprint, became this morning the first ever winner of a EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series race, under the attentive eye of the NASCAR American officials came to observe this inaugural event. Drivers offered a wonderful first race to those weiter >>
By winning the Elite pole positions, the Spanish Ander Vilarino get the best starting place of the 24-car grid of the Nogaro 200, the first meeting of the 2012 EURO-RACECAR, newly labeled NASCAR weiter >>
The 2012 EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series has started today in Gers (France). Drivers were in a hurry to enter on the track for the first official private practice of the Nogaro 200. For this first race of the NASCAR Era, the drivers lineup in very impressive with European dr weiter >>
Since the creation of the RACECAR SERIES in 2009, the affirmed goal of the organizers has always been to be closer to their American model, offering public a great show around a high-level competition. The quality of the job done, the development of the series &n weiter >>
NASCAR and EURO-RACECAR announced today they have reached a long-term partnership making EURO-RACECAR officially recognized by NASCAR as a NASCAR Touring Series, becoming the doorstep for European drivers to ra weiter >>
Race Nascar like cars on the best European tracksSince their creation in 2009, RACECAR Euro Series annonced themselves as a true revolution. They proved it during the last 3 seasons: innovating sporting formats, true co weiter >>