WIEN, Austria – Austrian team Dexwet-DF1 Racing will field a four-driver lineup with international flavor this season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, with the goal of challenging for championships and trophies in every division.
Christophe Bouchut and Ellen Lohr will drive in the ELITE 1 Division for the team directed by Norbert Walchhofer and supported by Dexwet Int’l, while Justin Kunz and ELITE Club champion Advait Deodhar will compete in ELITE 2.
In addition, Alina Loibnegger will make her NASCAR debut in the ELITE Club Division.
The only woman to win a DTM race and a driver with a 31-year career in motorsports between driving and management, Lohr will return to full-time competition for the first time since 2016 in the No. 99 Camaro.
“In Zolder I took a look at the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series. Then pieces simply fitted. The racing gene and passion never die. When I saw how 30 cars with big V8 engines thundered past me at the flying start, it was actually clear that I wanted to do that,” said Lohr. “I also chose Euro NASCAR because the team convinced me that it really wanted me and I just like this kind of motorsport. Here you still have to work really hard in the car and I really like that.
“Our goal can only be to finish on the podium,” she continued. “I certainly won’t be able to keep up with the front runners right from the start – that would be a miracle – but the ambition to be at the front is of course there. Otherwise I wouldn’t do that. That’s why a multi-year contract was signed.”
Returning to contend for the Euro NASCAR championship on the No. 66 Camaro will be GT racing icon and 24 Hours of Le Mans winner Bouchut. The Frenchman features two podium finishes in his NASCAR career and will be poised to have his say in an ELITE 1 Division looking more competitive than ever.
A veteran of Euro NASCAR despite his 21 years of age, Kunz will join Dexwet-DF1 Racing in ELITE 2 and share the car with Lohr, with the clear goal of contending for the title.
Kunz competed in both NWES divisions last year, finishing ninth in ELITE 2 after scoring his first podium finish at Tours Speedway.
“I’m sure I’ll learn a lot from Ellen. She has a lot of experience and was very successful. But I’m also looking forward to work with the other drivers. Together we can achieve a lot,” said Kunz, who also took part in his first NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park last August.
Moving up full-time to the ELITE 2 Division on the No. 66 car will be reigning ELITE Club champion Deodhar. The Indian driver will take the next step in his NASCAR career after gaining some valuable experience in six races with the Austrian team last year.
After testing the Euro NASCAR car during the most recent NASCAR Whelen Euro Series Drivers Recruitment days at Franciacorta, Austrian driver Loibnegger will make her NASCAR debut in the ELITE Club Division with the ambition to quickly climb up the NWES ranks.