The last 24 hours have been busy for Mazda Road to Indy driver confirmations, with Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda champion Nico Jamin’s confirmation of his Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires team leading the way.
Here’s some quick synopses:
Jamin will step up from USF2000 to Pro Mazda with Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing, thus following the identical path ventured by countryman Florian Latorre this time last year. Jamin, who blitzed the USF2000 field with 13 poles and 10 wins last year, will take up residence in the Mazda scholarship “Soul Red” livery.
“I am very happy and proud to stay in the Cape family for my 2016 season and have the opportunity to race in the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires,” said Jamin. “This team is seriously amazing, we did a great job together in 2015 for our USF2000 campaign, and that teamwork allowed me to get the championship win and the big scholarship from Mazda Motorsports.
“I’m very honored to be a Mazda scholarship driver, and this is a lifetime opportunity for me. We’ll be 100-percent dedicated this year to bring the Soul Red Pro Mazda car in victory lane, as my only goal is to win this championship and race Indy Lights in 2017!”
Cape ran three cars in 2015 and Jamin is the team’s first confirmed driver for 2016. Of the 2015 drivers, Neil Alberico is stepping up to the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires with Carlin, while Daniel Burkett has moved into sports cars with the No. 33 CJ Wilson Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge. Latorre, the third driver from 2015, is yet to finalize his plans.
In USF2000, Brazilian karting ace Lucas Kohl is the second confirmed driver for John Cummiskey Racing, announced on Thursday.
“I’m very excited to work with John Cummiskey Racing, he is well known for his dedication to the Team and attention to every detail,” Kohl said. “The team has Louis D’Agostino, a very dedicate and smart engineer who has helped in the past many youngster in their careers. Roberto Moreno, an experienced F1 and Indy car driver will also be helping me to catch up with the knowledge that I will need in my first year of racing in the USA.
“I’m confident that together we will strive to perform at the top level and achieve good results in this very competitive Championship. I want to thank the team for the chance to race with them on the Mazda Road to Indy.”
Additionally, Team Pelfrey has rounded out its four-driver lineup in USF2000 with the confirmation of 19-year-old New Zealander James Munro.
“I think the team environment is great and that together we can challenge at the front of the field. I feel confident that I’m with the right team to move forward with my career. The ladder provided by Team Pelfrey on the way up to IndyCar is really great. It’s always good to keep continuity with a team so I’m hoping that I can go all the way through the Road to Indy with the team,” Munro said.
Munro, who will drive the No. 83 Team New Zealand / Team Pelfrey Mazda, is the fourth rookie to sign with Pelfrey. Others are Robert Megennis (No. 80), Jordan Cane (No. 81) and TJ Fischer (No. 82).