Following a positive foray into the competitive Toyota Racing 86 series in 2021 by Giltrap Group Motorsport drivers, Simon Evans and Marco Giltrap, the pair are looking forward to some close racing in 2022.
Two Giltrap Group sponsored drivers are looking to improve on their successful 2021 introduction to the lively Toyota TR86 series as the opening round on January 14-16 approaches.
31 year old Simon Evans is no stranger to rubbing paint in tin-top racing, having previously won national the V8 SuperTourer championship, multiple Touring Car championships, as well as the global Jaguar I Pace eTrophy in 2020. He’s not just competing in the one make Toyota series, but also mentoring the up and coming Marco Giltrap (17) who made the step up from karts last year.
2021 was a superb year for both drivers, Evans battling for the championship down to the final round, missing out but a mere 5 points and Giltrap was awarded Rookie of the year.
Giltrap will line up with the vastly experienced Evans again in the two car Giltrap Group Motorsport team.
“I’m back in training and can’t wait to race again,” he said. “I’ve been good to go for a while now but obviously the lockdown has prevented any track time in the car. With everything getting underway again though, I’m aiming to get as many miles in as I can before the season begins.”
Last season he improved throughout the year and quickly established himself a regular challenger near the front of the field. This season, however, he has his eye on the podium.
“I want to keep focussing on getting better and I know there are areas where we can and will make some major improvements like the reverse grid race,” he added.
“I know there are some great opportunities in that for top places and solid points. Simon is a great team mate and teacher and I will continue to absorb as much of his knowledge and experience as I can.
“Improvement is the focus for sure, but yes, it would be awesome to get my first win especially as this is going to be a very competitive year.” Says Giltrap.
For Evans, his focus will firmly be on a championship win.
“The racing last year was just brilliant and it looks like it is going to be even better this coming season with another bunch of talented young guys and girls added to the mix, a bigger field and the reigning champion as the benchmark for everyone,” said the former V8, endurance and international Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy Series champion.
“It really is looking like a tremendous field and I’m very happy to be part of it and grateful to my sponsors for their ongoing support. There are at least ten drivers I’ve put a circle around so far who should be fighting for wins on a regular basis, so it’s going to be close.”
The Giltrap Group Motorsport team will be managed by Owen Evans, himself a legend of the sport both on track and in pitlane. Engineering support will come from the highly-experienced Stephen Giles along with Matt Houston and Nathen Pilcher who helped Simon Evans secure his V8 SuperTourer championship in previous years.
Round one kicks off at Highlands before the championship moves to Christchurch for the Ruapuna weekend, January 21-23. Three weekends later it’s to Hampton Downs on February 11-13 for the New Zealand Grand Prix meeting.
Pukekohe will host the Toyota 86 cars March 4-6 to become Round before the category heads to the Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupo on March 25-27. The season concludes at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park over the weekend of April 22-24.