Ferdinand Habsburg of Austria is returning for a second tilt at the Toyota Racing Series, which starts with the Lady Wigram Trophy race at Ruapuna Park near Christchurch on January 16 and 17.
He contested the 2015 TRS championship with Victory Motor Racing, finishing 11th with a best result of second place in the second race at the Hampton Downs round. For 2016 the 18 year old will move to Giles Motorsport who won the team’s championship in 2014.
“I can’t wait to return to the Toyota Racing Series,” said Habsburg from his Vienna home. “Last year I had a lot to learn and was splitting my time between studying and racing.”
“This year I can return more focused. It’s the best way to spend the winter season – the driving standards are really high, the learning curve is steep.”
“TRS is a great way to hone speed and racing skills before the northern season starts. Last year it gave me a great boost going into my 2015 European season and I can’t wait to get that boost again!”
His 2015 TRS experience taught him the value of consistent performance. “This time I am looking forward to being competitive from the start. I want to fight for the title and I know that with the points system we have to finish every race!”
Habsburg is a recent graduate from the world of karting, having moved up to single-seaters in 2014.
This year he raced in Formula Renault in Europe where he was regularly the fastest rookie racer and beat off tough competition from many of the seasoned drivers to finish as high as fourth overall in just his third weekend in the 2.0-litre machine
The five round Toyota Racing Series is contested over five consecutive weekends. It begins at Ruapuna near Christchurch on January 16 and 17and culminates with the New Zealand Grand Prix at Manfeild on February 13 and 14.
The championship is closely watched by media, team managers and talent spotters around the world. Television coverage of the racing is screened locally on TV3 and SKY, and internationally in more than 70 countries.
The full series schedule is:
January 16/17 Ruapuna, Christchurch
January 23/24 Teretonga, Invercargill
January 30/31 Hampton Downs, North Waikato
February 6/7 Taupo
February 13/14 New Zealand Grand Prix, Manfeild, Manawatu