The newest team to join the 2018 Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia grid brings with it significant Formula 1 experience.
Sydney-based team Volante Rosso will enter a yet-to-be-named Pro ranked driver in the Porsche championship, coinciding with the series’ introduction of the brand new 2018 911 GT3 Cup race car.
Leading the new outfit into 2018 is Volante Rosso Team Principal, Chris Papadopoulos, who brings with him over two decades of motorsport experience, including several seasons in Formula 1 as a senior engineer.
“I remember I was working in F1 when the 991 series 911 GT3 Cup cars first raced in Porsche Supercup as our support category in Barcelona. There was a real buzz in the paddock and they were great to watch all year,” said Papadopoulos.
“The 991 was such a step up from the 997 and the cars looked and sounded great. From that point, Carrera Cup was a category I just had to get involved in at some stage, and the new second generation cars for 2018 gave us a fantastic opportunity.”
Papadopoulos is expecting a challenge upon the start of the Carrera Cup season, where he will battle against several seasoned Porsche teams.
“While we’re all starting fresh with the second generation 991, most other teams have four years’ experience with the original version, so we’re under no illusions of the challenge.
“Carrera Cup is so competitive, especially with the depth of field already confirmed for this year, but I’m confident in our team and experience, so we’re up for it! Interest in the category is incredible this year, which is great for Porsche and for the category. We would love to add a second car to our program if we could get our hands on one, but they sold out pretty quick.”
Papadopoulos has cherish the ability to select a worthy driver for his new team, though remains tight-lipped on his selection.
“For the last few years, since I left F1 really, drivers have generally come to me to talk about racing programs, so it was interesting to be back in a situation where I was able to approach the drivers I thought could do a great job for us.
“It was quite fun actually, had a few good chats and it was great to catch up with some of my favourite drivers. The option was there to sign a couple of big names that I knew back in Europe, but more than headlines, it was important to go with someone who we knew could deliver for us, especially on street circuits.
“It’s so important in this series not only to have someone that can deliver on track, but also someone you have a good relationship with and can trust with the gear. Unfortunately, I can’t confirm the name yet due to a couple of obligations, but I’m sure we can go public with it soon. It’s a Pro driver and we are aiming for the front of the grid.”