In KZ2, Birel ART Racing will field the Italians Giuseppe Palomba and Alessio Piccini in addition to the Thai driver Sutumno Thanapongpan. Palomba, Italian Champion and 2nd in the FIA International Karting Super Cup in 2020, will take to the track to reinforce his presence at the forefront of the international scene. For the newcomer Piccini, the first objective is to quickly familiarise himself with his new equipment in order to be able to fight for the top places in the category. It is a brand new adventure in KZ2 for Thanapongpan, who last season was involved with Birel ART Racing in the Senior category of direct drive karts.
As far as the OK category is concerned, the Italian factory has three familiar faces: the Brazilian Matheus Morgatto, the Italian Cristian Bertuca and the Polish Tymoteusz Kucharczyk, who will make his debut in the top category of direct drive karting in the colours of RK after having been a formidable protagonist in OKJ. The Russian Violentii Nicolay, the Uzbek Ismail Akhmedkhadjaev and the Polish Max Angelard join this trio.
In OKJ, the focus is on young recruits from Mini: the Colombian Hanna Hernandez, Dutchman Keeren Thijs, Finland’s Kini Tani and Brazilian Aurelia Nobels will be absolute rookies in the category. Frenchman Matteo Spirgel will be the only one in his second Junior year, but in his first at international level.
Birel ART Racing will also have an official presence in the Mini category. In fact, a development programme will start in 2021 to support the category dedicated to the youngest drivers, in close collaboration with Alessandro Manetti, double World Champion, who will be in charge of this new project. The first official driver will be the Belgian Dries Van Langendonck.
Finally, the “Richard Mille Young Talent Academy” programme continues, with the announcement of a new driver expected soon. Confirming the value of this project, after two seasons with Birel ART Racing under the Richard Mille colours, Maya Weug recently won the “Girls on track – Rising Stars” initiative, created by “FIA Women in Motorsport”. This is a result that will give her prestigious access to the world of single-seater racing, as she will be part of the Ferrari Driver Academy, a historic first for a female driver.