Dutch teenager Richard Verschoor, one of the stars of last summer’s Castrol Toyota Racing Series is returning for another crack at the title he narrowly missed back in February.
Verschoor, who has his 17th birthday today (Saturday 16 December) won three races last summer when he was the youngest driver in the series and finished on the podium another four times, to still have a chance at the title when he got to the final round, the New Zealand Grand Prix at Manfeild.
In the closest championship in the Toyota Racing Series 14-year history, he finished third overall, just 12 points behind Australian Thomas Randle.
"I'm really happy to join M2 Competition for my second season in the Toyota Racing Series,” said Verschoor. “Last time I was extremely close to winning the championship, so I can't wait to go for the win again this year!"
“The M2 team showed some great performance over the past years so I'm sure we will have a good chance"
Verschoor has had a quiet season in Europe this year competing in two Renault 2.0 series. He finished ninth in the main Eurocup and eighth in the Northern European Championship, where he only competed in 4 of the 12 races, winning once and scoring two other podiums.
Verschoor returns to New Zealand in an effort to get his career back on track before having another tilt at the Formula Renault Eurocup in 2018, driving for a different team.
In his single seater debut in 2016, he won the opening round of the Northern European Zone Formula 4 Championship at Sochi. Verschoor was victorious for 11 consecutive races to take the title. From Benschop in the Netherlands, he was even more dominant in the Spanish Formula 4 series, winning 17 of the 20 races.
Verschoor started his car racing career after five seasons of karting, winning Dutch titles, German and European championships as well as a sixth-place finish at the World Championship, and his career profile was raised when he won the CIK-FIA Academy trophy.
While he was still karting Verschoor was elevated to the Dutch Knaf Talent First program, which is an initiative of the Dutch Motorsport ASN.
The Castrol Toyota Racing Series follows a familiar format with free practice each Friday, qualifying and one race on Saturday and two races on Sunday at each round.
The five-round, 15 race series which concludes with the New Zealand Grand Prix at Manfeild on February 9-11, starts at Ruapuna Park near Christchurch on January 12-14.