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The number of NASCAR Whelen Euro Series drivers crossing the Atlantic to compete in NASCAR in the US keeps growing as the official NASCAR Series in Europe continues to provide the best opportunities to its drivers to develop their career. The latest drivers to collect prizes for their 2016 success are Stienes Longin and Arianna Casoli.
ELITE 2 Division Champion Stienes Longin will make his American debut on February 24th at New Smyrna Speedway in the PPG/Tower Sealants Pro Late Model 100, one of the most important races held at the track during the Daytona Speedweeks.
“I can’t wait to take on this new challenge and I thank my main sponsor Vriends and the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series for making this possible! I am training a lot, both physically and mentally, and working on the simulator to be in top form,” said the Belgian, who won a record-setting eight times in the ELITE 2 Division in 2016. “I don’t feel pressure for this debut, but I will have to learn quickly how things work in the US and the level is going to be really high. My competitors have much more experience than me and I’ll do my best to put up a strong performance.”
Four of Longin’s nine career wins came on ovals and the 25-year-old is sure the experience he gained through his first two complete season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series will be fundamental in this first outing overseas.
“I really like oval racing and I have been successful at it in NWES. The experience I gained in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series will be fundamental in America to quickly adapt to a new car and a new track,” said the Leuven-native.
On February 15th, Lady Cup winner Arianna Casoli will take part in a full day of testing at New Smyrna Speedway with former NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Mike Skinner as coach.
“This is an opportunity I couldn’t hope to have just one year ago. I learnt a lot in 2016, from the car to the tracks, which were all completely new to me. This year we are working hard with CAAL Racing to improve our performances and this fantastic prize will give me me the chance to learn a lot of things I will use at Venray in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series,” said the Italian. “I have to thank NASCAR and the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series for this unique experience.”
The last NWES driver to compete in Florida will be Anthony Kumpen on February 25th. The 2016 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series Champion will return to Daytona International Speedway for the second time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series season opener at the legendary 2.5-mile speedway.
The 2017 NWES season will be officially presented on March 3 with the NWES Prologue at the Autodromo di Franciacorta, Italy.