Bamboo Engineering will have an entirely new driver lineup in the World Touring Car Championship this year, with Alex MacDowall and Pasquale Di Sabatino having joined the team to race its Chevrolet Cruzes. The duo replace Darryl O'Young and Yukinori Taniguchi at the British team.
British driver MacDowall has raced a Chevrolet Cruze in the British Touring Car Championship for the past two years for the factory RML squad.
“I am absolutely delighted at being selected by my new team bamboo engineering to represent them in their 2012 WTCC campaign, driving the 1.6 turbo Cruze,” he said.
“It is a fantastic racecar and it's great to be continuing my relationship with Chevrolet and the Cruze and two really good campaigns in the BTCC, where I received tremendous support from the fans and sponsors. I'm really looking forward to the challenge of WTCC and I hope to be able to reward bamboo engineering for their faith in my ability with consistently good results.”
Italy's Di Sabatino moves into touring cars from single-seaters, where he contested four seasons of Formula Renault 3.5 between 2006 and 2009, and more recently raced on the WTCC support bill in Auto GP. He will make his debut on home soil at Monza.
“I'm very happy to have signed with bamboo,” said Di Sabatino. “Moving up to the WTCC is a very important step in my career. I'm very pleased to be starting this new adventure with bamboo, they are a very good, professional team and have proved themselves in the WTCC previously. I have a lot to learn this year but I'm confident that with bamboo we can achieve some good results.
“It's also very important for me to be competing in this championship as my hero and friend Gabriele Tarquini will also be competing. This will be my first year of racing at a world championship level but I make a promise to myself, bamboo engineering and everyone who has made this possible, that I will not disappoint, I can't wait to start at Monza”
Team principal Richard Coleman said: “We're obviously delighted to have Alex and Pasquale with us for the 2012 season. This will be bamboo's third assault on the Yokohama Independents Trophy and our aim every year is to be competing for the trophy.
“We've managed to achieve this so far and I'm very confident that with this driver pairing we'll continue to do so in 2012. Alex has proved himself in the BTCC over the last two seasons and I'm sure he'll shine at world level as well. Pasquale of course has no previous Touring Car experience but he's a very quick racing driver and I'm sure he'll adapt very quickly to the cars.”
Chevrolet Motorsport boss Eric Neve commented: “We at Chevrolet Europe are very happy to have such a professional team as Bamboo Engineering running Cruzes in the WTCC again this year. Their standards of work are in our eyes the highest in the Independent Trophy and hope this will reward Alex and Pasquale with enviable results in their maiden season in a world championship.”