Red Bull places juniors Lynn, Gasly in DAMS GP2 squad

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Red Bull Junior drivers Alex Lynn (pictured right) and Pierre Gasly have signed with reigning GP2 Series champions DAMS, which is notable for two reasons.

The first is that Red Bull has never, until now, made a point of placing its juniors into GP2, and this must be perceived as an immediate aftereffect of the new FIA Superlicense system that places more points on GP2 than it does the World Series by Renault, which had been the normal landing spot for Red Bull’s next generation of drivers.

The second is that even with two full-season rookies, this team should retain its title contender status after Jolyon Palmer took this year’s crown.

Lynn is the reigning GP3 champion and talented prospect in Gasly made some GP2 starts the second half of last year with Caterham, prior to its evolution as Status GP.

“After the brilliant season we had in 2014 it’ll be difficult to do better!” team owner Jean-Paul Driot said in a release, via the official GP2 website. “Obviously our aim is to keep our titles and I’m delighted to welcome Pierre Gasly and Alex Lynn to the team.

“It’s the youngest driver line-up we’ve ever had in GP2, but we’ve got two exceptionally talented guys who have a great future ahead of them. Although the overall level in the championship will again be very high, I’m confident that with these drivers DAMS will prove worthy of its rank.”

Said Lynn,  “Their record in the last few years speaks for itself and there’s nowhere else I wanted to be in GP2 – it’s a fantastic opportunity for me and I’d like to thank them for giving me this break. My aim is to fight for the Championship. It’s a long time since anybody won GP2 in their first year, but if we can get off to a solid start there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to fight for wins and podiums straight away.”

Added Gasly, “I’m very happy to be joining DAMS which, for me, is a benchmark. It’s the team I wanted to work with. The first tests we did together in Abu Dhabi really boosted my confidence.”

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.