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Lestrup Racing Team launches Young Driver Programme to find future STCC champions

Lestrup Racing Team has launched the ‘Young Driver Programme’ to create a structured way for young drivers to reach the top of Swedish motorsport. The 2020 STCC TCR Scandinavia programme of the team will play a key part for the selected drivers.

“Today there is no natural ladder for the juniors and we want to fill that gap, something I would have really needed at the start of my career,” said team co-owner Fredrik Lestrup.

“This is a long-term programme spanning over several years that we are keen to evolve and expand.”

Part of the programme is Kenth Öhlin, the founder of renowned damper manufacturers Öhlins.

“I am very glad to support this programme to create a stable and relevant tool for promising Swedish racing talents,” said Kenth Öhlin.

“Helping young drivers is a key part of securing the regrowth of Swedish motorsport, both nationally and internationally, and we strongly believe that our programme can contribute to this.”

The team is going to select three participants each year from applications and through scouting. The drivers must have a background in motorsport such as go karts, junior championships or sim racing.

“We are going to provide the junior drivers the conditions to evaluate and improve themselves as drivers,” said Fredrik Lestrup.

“They are going to drive our advanced simulator, learn data logging and other tools that are decisive for a successful career. They are also going to compare their performance with the established drivers of the team, including former world champion Rob Huff and the STCC race winner Oliver Söderström.”

The drivers are going to get behind the wheel of the team’s STCC cars, the Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR, the same type of cars that are used in the FIA World Touring Car Cup.

“There is no better practice than to actually drive a race car and to do it as early as possible in the career,” said Fredrik Lestrup.

“Our drivers are going to learn to work with engineers, mechanics and try qualifying simulations, as well as drive full race distances. They are going to feel the changes to the car and work after a well-prepared test plan.”

Another important part of the programme is media and sponsor work.

“We are going to help the participants with sponsorship work and profiling in both social media, as well as towards reporting media,” said Fredrik Lestrup.

“The participants are going to get access to our events and activities, as well as become involved in all of our media activities connected to our STCC programme.”

The Lestrup Young Driver programme is in its final stages of selecting drivers and a first test will be held with the final participants next week at Gelleråsen Arena.