NWES 2019 SEASON
Team Bleekemolen joins NASCAR Whelen Euro Series
The top team in European Touring cars and GT racing will debut with
Sebastiaan and Michael Bleekemolen at the wheel
Team Bleekemolen, one of the best touring car and GT teams in Europe, is joining the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series grid in 2019. Sebastiaan and Michael Bleekemolen will make their Euro NASCAR debut by sharing the #69 HSU Payroll Services Ford Mustang.
The Dutch team, founded by former Formula 1 driver Michael Bleekemolen, is winning championships and races the highest level in Europe since 1985 and most recently conquered the Gentleman and Teams Championships in the Central Europe Renault Clio Cup in 2018 and the Benelux Renault Clio Cup Championship in 2016. Team Bleekemolen will be supported by long-term partner HSU Payroll Services and is currently looking for drivers to field a second car.
A multiple time Clio Cup Champion, Sebastiaan Bleekemolen will drive the #69 Mustang in the ELITE 1 Division after sampling the Euro NASCAR car in the latest at the Autodromo di Franciacorta in December.
“The Recruitment Days were the dealbreaker because we knew the series, and the Hezemans family spoke very enthusiastically about it to us, but when we drove the car, after 3 laps we completely fell in love with it. It was a fantastic experience. This is a race car as it is supposed to be, one in which you really have to push to go fast,” said the 40-year-old Haarlem, Netherlands native, who is not setting a specific goal for 2019. “We always choose series where there is a lot of competition and Euro NASCAR is extremely competitive. It’s hard to say now where we will be, but we want to fight for the podium. Our partners at HSU Payroll Services make everything possible for us and they were really enthusiastic when we told them about joining NWES, so I think we can offer them a really good product!”
Sebastiaan’s father Michael, a former Formula 1 driver who amassed a huge experience throughout his career, found the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series the ideal environment to expand the team’s programs.
“The car is so nice to drive and it really surprised me. The championship’s structure is very smart with ELITE 1 and ELITE 2 and the costs to race are kept low. There is nothing like it in Europe! Plus there is also a lot of competition and that’s what made my decision,” said the 69-year.-old driver, who will compete for the ELITE 2 and the Legend Trophy classifications. “In Franciacorta the car ran all day without any problem and that was also impressive. It is difficult to say what we can do because we have little experience with this car, but we can count on a great team and I’m confident we can have our say.”
Team Bleekemolen will complete its Euro NASCAR car and undergo a series of test in the upcoming weeks before heading to Spain for the April 13-14 NWES season opener at Circuit Ricardo Tormo, in Valencia.
Photo Credit: Team Bleekemolen
NASCAR Whelen Euro Series
The NASCAR Whelen Euro Series was founded in 2008 and established the NASCAR official European Series in January 2012 thanks to a long-term partnership signed with NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing), Team FJ, a Motorsports company located in Blois, France, and Whelen Engineering as title sponsor of the Series.The season is made up of 24 races, equally split among ELITE 1 and ELITE 2 divisions, on the best European tracks. Euro NASCAR introduced a stunning innovation on July 7-8, 2012 by organizing the first ever NASCAR race on an oval track in Europe on a half-mile speedway built in the downtown of Tours (France). With four races in two days, these 400 HP V8 monsters provide pure racing action and thrilling bumper-to-bumper battles as well as a lot of family fun around the track! In the pure NASCAR tradition, race fans can get closer to the action than ever and feel the unique in Europe paddock atmosphere thanks to drivers, teams and cars always available for the spectators.The series attracts drivers from all over the world, all willing to fight on track for the win and take the first step towards becoming a NASCAR star in the U.S.