Former veteran Formula 1 senior engineer Chris Papadopoulos is putting his knowledge to use in the 2018 Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia as he launches his own team Volante Rosso.
While no driver has been announced yet, the team have confirmed that the driver will be competing in the Pro class.
“I remember I was working in F1 when the 991 series 911 GT3 Cup cars first raced in Porsche Supercup as our support category in Barcelona. There was a real buzz in the paddock and they were great to watch all year,” said Papadopoulos.
“The 991 was such a step up from the 997 and the cars looked and sounded great. From that point, Carrera Cup was a category I just had to get involved in at some stage, and the new second generation cars for 2018 gave us a fantastic opportunity.”
While Papadopoulos is looking forward to the new season he knows it is going to be a huge challenge.
“While we’re all starting fresh with the second generation 991, most other teams have four years’ experience with the original version, so we’re under no illusions of the challenge.
“Carrera Cup is so competitive, especially with the depth of field already confirmed for this year, but I’m confident in our team and experience, so we’re up for it! Interest in the category is incredible this year, which is great for Porsche and for the category.”
While the team will initially be running a single car, Papadopoulos hasn’t ruled out adding another in the future.
“We would love to add a second car to our program if we could get our hands on one, but they sold out pretty quick.”
Papadopoulos has already made his decision on who will be driving for team but he isn’t ready to make an announcement.
“For the last few years, since I left F1 really, drivers have generally come to me to talk about racing programs, so it was interesting to be back in a situation where I was able to approach the drivers I thought could do a great job for us.
“It was quite fun actually, had a few good chats and it was great to catch up with some of my favourite drivers. The option was there to sign a couple of big names that I knew back in Europe, but more than headlines, it was important to go with someone who we knew could deliver for us, especially on street circuits.
“It’s so important in this series not only to have someone that can deliver on track, but also someone you have a good relationship with and can trust with the gear. Unfortunately, I can’t confirm the name yet due to a couple of obligations, but I’m sure we can go public with it soon. It’s a Pro driver and we are aiming for the front of the grid.”