Jake Hughes leads a trio of GP3 newcomers in DAMS driver line-up ahead of its maiden season in the Formula 1 feeder series.
Having enjoyed a multitude of success in GP2, including three drivers titles and two teams championships, DAMS is set to expand into GP3 for 2016. The French squad has hired three rookies in the shape of European Formula 3 graduate Santino Ferrucci, Formula Renault ALPS runner-up Jake Hughes and Formula Renault 2.0 contender Kevin Joerg.
Team boss Jean-Paul Driot is keen for his Le Mans-based squad to make an instant impact in the series and maintain its record of winning in every formula it has entered.
“We're eager to begin this new challenge in GP3,” Driot said. “It's an extremely competitive category full of talented young drivers, but Jake, Santino and Kevin have lots of potential. We're excited to work with all three and help them reach the top level of professional motorsport.
“As newcomers to GP3 we appreciate that there is a lot to learn but we do hope to be competitive from the get-go. DAMS has won in every category in which it has entered and we hope to replicate this success as quickly as possible. We believe the talent and speed of our three young guns will help us reach our goals.”
The DAMS chief has full confidence in his trio of new drivers and after a number of post-season GP3 tests late last year Hughes is confident of a productive rookie campaign.
“It's an honour to be working with a team as fantastic as DAMS, who have a track record of doing well with new challenges,” Hughes said. “I tested a GP3 car for the first time in Abu Dhabi last year and I immediately got on with both the tyres – which I know can be a challenge – and the car as a whole, so that makes me confident of a good year.”
All three drivers will start 2016 at a three-day pre-season test at Estoril in Portugal between the 22-24 March before two additional tests in April in Valencia and Barcelona.