NEW CHALLENGE - CHANGE TO RACING TOTAL
From 2018 on Justin will be driving for the german Racing-Total team, which plans to run two cars in the series next year.
Justin about his new team: “I´m very happy to be able to work with the Racing Total team next year. With the whole team being german it makes it a bit easier off the track, too. I can´t wait to get back in the car and i am looking forward to the next season”.
©NASCAR Whelen Euro Series/Stephane Azemard – Racing-Total Chevy
Justin Kunz will again be on the grid for the upcoming season of the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series. The young german will start his third season in EuroNASCAR with a new challenge.
CIRCUIT ZOLDER – FINALS 2017
EURONASCAR SEASON FINALE IN ZOLDER - STRONG PERFORMANCE BY JUSTIN KUNZ REMAINS UNREWARDED
Justin Kunz went into the season finale of the European NASCAR offshoot in Zolder, Belgium, last weekend full of hope. The top 5 in the overall standings were still within reach and a place on the podium was the goal. At the start of the race weekend, however, Kunz had to scale back his ambitions somewhat.
The 20-year-old from Appenweier, Germany, was not entirely happy with the handling of his #11 car, with the rear end in particular causing problems under braking. The Team PK Carsport Chevrolet was always a little unstable as a result, so the German junior driver had to settle for 7th place in qualifying as well.
The driver from Polamd launched an attack shortly before the end of the race, which Kunz was able to parry strongly. After that, the Poish driver lost control of his V8 car during another rather hopeless overtaking attempt and spun Kunz off in the final chicane. So the dream of a podium in the last race was gone, but at least he still brought his car to the finish and was ultimately classified in 11th place.
A HAND ON THE PODIUM
What a weekend! With the season final in Zolder (B) my second season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series has gone by.
I started from P7 into the Saturday race and was on P4 when the safety car came out. The race was restarted for 2 laps and I was virtually on P3, but I got touched at the rear. So I had to stabilize the car and stayed on P4 narrowly on the podium.
That should change in the Sunday race. Mostly the whole race distance I was driving on P3. But 2 laps to go the guy on P4 saw a space and wanted to pass me in the gras. Normally it is clear that this move will end in a crash. He drove into my side and both of us where out. Bye 3rd place and podium. In the end I finished P11.
Nevertheless it was a great weekend and a big thanks goes to my team PK Carpsort and to all the sponsors which made it all possible.
With P6 in the Championship, there is enough motivation for the season 2018!
SEASON SUMMARY NASCAR EURO 2017
Kunz narrowly missed out on the top 5 in the overall standings at the end of the year, just a single point behind the position he was aiming for before the race weekend. With 6th place overall in the championship, however, the young German has achieved a significant improvement on last year, much racing bad luck prevented a better result this year.
His further development was clearly visible, so we can look forward to continuing to follow Justin Kunz on his path in the European NASCAR scene in 2018. All signs are good, so as soon as there is something new to report here, you will find it here on the blog or directly on his website.
Justin Kunz himself was visibly disappointed after missing out on the podium, but still expressed his satisfaction with the final weekend. "Thanks to the team at PK Carsport and to all my sponsors and supporters who made this season possible," said Kunz, who wouldn't mind skipping the winter break completely for now.
Quelle Text: Copyright Bilder ©NASCAR Whelen Euro Series/Stephane Azemard
Pictures ©NASCAR Whelen Euro Series/Stephane Azemard
Justin Kunz had high hopes heading to the start of the EuroNASCAR Playoffs in Italy, as the 20-year old had the chance to test at the Autodromo di Franciacorta earlier this month.
Starting the weekend with lots of momentum the german was running in the top spots during the free practice sessions, however he had to settle for 13th on the grid. With the track conditions getting worse later in the session, the No. #11 PK Carsport Chevrolet was sent out on track too late to qualify up in front.
The 2.5 kilometer track of Franciacorta is quite narrow, so it´s quite difficult to make up some ground from the middle of the pack. Still Kunz managed to move up the ranks finishing in 9th place. After Kunz received a grid penalty for the 2nd race of the weekend, he had to settle for 9th again at the chequered flag.
His speed during the weekend was encouraging, so the youngster is now looking forward to the season finals at Circuit Zolder in Belgium in October.
RACE FRUSTRATION DESPITE GOOD PERFORMANCE
There's no doubt that Justin Kunz could have done better this weekend in Italy, but he has now jumped up to 7th place in the overall standings. In October at Zolder in Belgium, the youngster will have to achieve another good result in the season finale and perhaps move up into the top five in the championship.
Quelle Text: racing14.de Copyright Bilder ©NASCAR Whelen Euro Series/Stephane Azemard
In the tussle in the midfield at the start of the race, in which there was plenty of unrest in the field, Kunz fell back to 18th place. The train to the front had long since left the station, but Kunz didn't give up. He gradually made up ground, caught one rival after the other and was even among the top six at the finish. And he did so with a slightly bruised front, because when a slow vehicle initially cleared the racing line and then closed the door again, a collision occurred.
But even with a slightly bent front, Kunz continued to move forward. The joy of catching up came to an abrupt end late in the evening, however, when he was given a 30-second time penalty by the race organizers for a contact in the starting phase.
Contact is a common occurrence in EuroNASCAR, so the decision of the race stewards was surprising, and numerous other drivers were also affected. In the end, therefore, Kunz could still be satisfied with 9th place.
Sunday's race was much quieter. The first ten had quickly pulled away after the start, while Justin Kunz was still busy with the opponents around him. But as the race progressed, he got into better and better shape and passed some of his competitors. So this time he finished from the midfield again in 9th place, in terms of lap times he was always in the top 5 towards the end of the race.
HOMERACES AT HOCKENHEIM
AMERICAN FAN FEST HOCKENHEIM FOR JUSTIN KUNZ - IN THE TOP 6 AND UNREWARDED PERFORMANCE
EURO NASCAR AT HOCKENHEIM 2017
My home race at the Hockenheimring is already in the books. I had quite a difficult weekend i have to admit. After some issues in the qualifying session i had to start the first race from 14th on the grid.
I managed to gain some positions and finished in P6. For the second race of the weekend i definitely was looking for a better finish, but after the stewards handed out a drive-trough penalty, there was no chance of a podium anymore. The cause for the penalty was the double-file start of the race, the stewards decided i made my move too early….
At least i managed to pick up a few slots, but 14th at the end was not what i had expected. Still it was great to drive at “home” – especially the fans were just amazing. With the summer break now going on, i´ll have to wait until September to get back in the car. Prior to our next races at Franciacorta in Italy in the middle of september, i will have the chance to test at the track.
With double points on hand in each race starting in Italy, i am looking forward to moving up the ranks. Stay tuned and thanks to all fans and my partners for the support.
So in the first race, damage limitation was the order of the day from this position, and Kunz at least managed to do that. He gradually worked his way forward and was able to finish the first race in 6th place - that was simply as good as it got on this day. Kunz had a lot planned for the last race before the summer break on Sunday, this time he started the race from 11th position on the grid.
Attack was the key word and so the youngster quickly made his way to the front, but this plan was abruptly ended by race control. The German received a drive-through penalty for allegedly pushing out of his grid position too early at the flying start. He himself felt that the start was ideal - moreover, he had no advantage of this in the first corner of the Hockenheimring when he found himself trapped and had to let his rivals go. The start procedure is all about hundredths of a second, and this decision was one of several questionable ones made by the race organizers this race weekend.
In the end, however, he only had to go into the pits to serve his penalty. And when things don't go well, bad luck also comes into play. The speed indicator in the cockpit was correct when he drove through the pit lane at low speed, but apparently it wasn't working properly, so he was going too fast here - the consequence: the next pit lane passage shortly afterwards due to excessive speed in the pits. At the end of the race Kunz gave everything again and caught two competitors. Despite the unfortunate race, the PK Carsport team was satisfied with the German - the times on Sunday were right and the youngster would have been right up there at the front under normal circumstances.
Nevertheless, Justin Kunz was happy about the EuroNASCAR race weekend in Hockenheim. Many fans stopped by to see the young German, who was much more in the spotlight than usual at his home race. In any case, Kunz is already looking ahead again. Before heading to Franciacorta in Italy in mid-September, he and his PK Carsport team will be testing on the new circuit on the calendar. In Italy, the knot should then be broken - Justin Kunz still has his sights firmly set on the podium.
NEW WEBSITE ONLINE
Welcome to justin-kunz.de, the official website of german racing driver Justin Kunz from Appenweier, who is racing in his 2nd season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series. We are just starting with the website, so stay tuned for more information about Justin.
OVAL EXPERIENCES - RACEWAY VENRAY 2017
JUSTIN KUNZ - GERMAN YOUNG TALENT AT THE OVAL OF RACEWAY VENRAY
For the German youngster from the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, Justin Kunz, it was the second time in his career in the European NASCAR offshoot on the oval of Raceway Venray last weekend. The conditions here were not exactly the easiest. Kunz barely got to drive last year on his debut at the half-mile and was only able to turn a few laps.
After being able to make a brief guest appearance in the LMV8 series based here last year, he now returned to the oval circuit, which is unique in Europe, after a long time. While the rookies, who were here for the first time, got some extra practice, the German had to wait until Saturday before he was allowed to climb back into his #11 Chevrolet.
In contrast to the past, the schedule for the race weekend was compressed and so the first thing to do was to adjust to the V8 bolide again in free practice and, above all, of course, to the special features of the oval. The 20-year-old from Appenweier in Baden then showed in qualifying that Kunz had made enormous progress compared to last year despite the few kilometers on the oval. P5 on the grid was a first exclamation mark, the gap to the front was small, so that the German was already sniffing at the podium.
URONASCAR VENRAY - OVALE ERFAHRUNGEN
However, the peculiarities of the half-mile oval unfortunately prevented this for him. Thomas Ferrando, who started behind him, also made a significant contribution to this. The Frenchman in the #37 Knauf Racing car, who already has plenty of Euro NASCAR experience, took aim at the rear of Kunz's PK Carsport Chevy a couple of times, with the result that the young German had to let the Frenchman go.
Kunz was not discouraged by the loss of place and continued to attack, but Venray Raceway is an extremely difficult place for EuroNASCAR cars to overtake. Justin Kunz also felt the effects of this, repeatedly launching one or two attacks on the middle lane of the race track.
But at the races in Venray hardly any driver succeeded in doing so - the outside line was usually simply faster. As a result of his own attacks, he suddenly found himself in a poor starting position and had to give up even more places - in the end, the fast NASCAR youngster from Germany was visibly frustrated with 9th place, but he could not be accused of a lack of speed or attacking spirit on this day.
Kunz then started the second race from 9th place, but the half-mile was not to bring him any luck on this day either. Attempting to overtake the #7 car on the inside, the PK-Carsport driver clearly lost momentum and also places - in addition, the train to the front had already left without him. So in the end he had to settle for 9th place once again, a little frustrated, because there was visibly more in it this weekend. But the oval has its own laws - Justin Kunz is now focusing all his attention on his home race at the Hockenheimring at the end of July. In this sense, keep racing!
AMERICAN SPEEDFESTIVAL – BRANDS HATCH 2017
JUSTIN KUNZ AT THE AMERICAN SPEEDFESTIVAL -
THE SPEED IS THERE
German junior racer Justin Kunz hasn't been in a racing car since Valencia - neither in EuroNASCAR nor in any other car. That's why the 19-year-old from Appenweier, Germany, focused on getting back into shape in the first free practice sessions of the European NASCAR offshoot. The break since the season opener did nothing to dampen the German's speed.
Kunz easily reeled off 24 laps, which put him in 11th place. In the afternoon, he then pulverized his lap time by more than a second and was able to finish at the front in 5th place. After that, it was off to qualifying on Saturday morning. His time was good for 6th place, which easily moved him into the short Superpole shootout of the top 12.
In the short session, which was all about grid positions, he took 5th on the grid and showed again that he was with the music. He delivered his best lap time of the race weekend right on time in the final seconds of Superpole, clearly breaking the 50-second mark with a time of 49.676. That would have put him in a good position even in the ELITE1 championship, so he could be more than satisfied with that. The podium was the chosen target for the first race of the ELITE2 championship, but sometimes things turn out differently than you think.
THE RACE AT BRANDS HATCH -
When the junior championship race was released, the V8 cars stormed through the first corner at Brands Hatch - the famous Paddock Hill-Bend. Kunz was able to hold his position when DF1 driver Dreszer lightly touched Frenchman Ulysse Delsaux in front of him. Delsaux could not hold his Ford Mustang with the #3 and spun - by a hair's breadth the German could still avoid.
On the approach to the Druids corner he put his #11 PK Carsport Chevrolet past Dreszer into third position and set off in pursuit of the leading duo. On the approach to the finish entrance curve, however, Kunz was unfortunately caught when he hit a still slippery spot on the asphalt that had previously been treated with binder - oil had leaked from a vehicle here during the supporting program.
As this all happened during the first lap, Kunz had to let the whole field pass. In a later safety car phase, the Belgian team brought the young German into the pits to briefly check the radiator. After the restart, he at least managed to work his way back up to 14th place - even though more would certainly have been possible on this day. In addition, a good lap time was hardly possible in the midfield traffic, so he also had to settle for 14th place on the grid for Sunday's race.
Before the final race of the weekend, however, his PK Carsport team was given some serious work to do after the ELITE1 race. Stienes Longin was involved in a collision with the #11 and the team had to give the Chevy a new front end, among other things. From then on, the handling was anything but optimal, but Kunz was at least able to compete in the race.
A good start quickly brought him up to 9th place, but he was unable to put the previous day's times on the asphalt with his Chevy. Kunz reported extreme oversteer on the V8 car, so in the end he had to settle for 12th place - the English also like to describe such a race weekend as: Character buildung - What remains is the certainty that the speed is there and he can keep up with the front. In addition, he was able to save valuable points and with the current 7th place in the overall standings, nothing is lost yet. Next stop for the young German is now the oval of Raceway Venray in mid-July - In this sense, Keep Racing
DEBUT WITH PK CARSPORT
SEASON OPENER OF THE NASCAR WHELEN EURO SERIES - JUSTIN KUNZ IN VALENCIA
German junior driver Justin Kunz entered his second season in the European Nascar offshoot last weekend. With the champion team from Belgium around the reigning champion Anthony Kumpen, the conditions this year are more than good for the youngster.
On Thursday Kunz was able to complete his first laps in the #11 car and get used to the V8 Chevrolet again. He last raced in October at the 2016 season finale, and a test in Zolder before the season opener in Valencia was the only time since then that he has been able to sit behind the wheel of the 400-plus horsepower car.
So the first thing to do was to get back into the groove and shake off the winter rust. Both on Thursday during the tests on the Circuit Ricardo Tormo track and on Friday in the free practice sessions, Kunz completed his laps without any problems - always alternating with teammate Stienes Longin, who drives the car in the ELITE1 championship, while the German competes in the ELITE2 junior championship.
Little by little, the lap times fell, there were no technical faults or driving errors to complain about, so Kunz was able to go into the battle for grid positions with optimism.
QUALIFYING – SUPERPOLE
Just in time for the very short qualifying session on Saturday morning, Justin Kunz then also delivered his best laps. He easily reached the Superpole, in which the 12 fastest drivers decide the starting grid among themselves for another 5 minutes.
On the 4.005 kilometer long track it was finally enough for the 7th starting position, at PK Carsport they were more than satisfied with the newcomer.
Justin Kunz had to wait until late on Saturday afternoon to finally reel off the first race kilometers of the year. In the drivers' briefing before the opening race, it was specifically pointed out not to step on the gas too early at the flying start. Practice is usually a little different, and the first race in Valencia was no exception.
Kunz adhered to the instructions, but was a bit late at the first start of the year compared to the competition and instead of being able to focus on the cars in front of him, he had to keep one or two opponents at bay who were coming up behind him.
In the end, he succeeded brilliantly, but the gap to the front in the 16-lap race had already become too large for him to be able to achieve anything under his own steam. So, on his debut in the PK Carsport car, he finished in 7th place - a good debut, even if the youngster wasn't entirely satisfied with himself after the race, as he said he couldn't find the right rhythm.
But his late overtaking maneuver against the Brazilian Marconi Abreu in the car with the #47 showed his skills again - before turn 2 he passed the Toyota Camry of RDV Competition as clean as a whistle. A clean race from Kunz, much to the liking of the PK Carsport team on the other side of the pit wall.
In the second race on Sunday morning, Justin Kunz lined up in 8th place on the grid. The order here is based on the fastest race laps from the previous day. This time he got off to a very good start and was already slightly ahead of the man in front of him, the Pole Maciej Dreszer. Lying on the outside lane before the first corner, however, he had to drop back and settle behind.
At the beginning of the race he stayed within striking distance of the leading pack, but was not able to intervene decisively here and therefore concentrated at the end on keeping the chasers behind him in check and building up sufficient advantage. In the end he still managed to move up to 6th place, so that he now holds the same position in the championship and is only 16 points behind the leader.
NEXT STOP BRANDS HATCH
Justin Kunz was certainly under more pressure than usual on his debut for the champion team. But the young German took a well-considered approach to his first appearance with the Belgians. Race overview, important points, clean races, not a scratch on the #11 Chevrolet, everyone at PK Carsport was more than satisfied with the new addition to the team.
WARMUP – TEST DRIVES AT ZOLDER
JUSTIN KUNZ - NASCAR TEST DRIVES IN ZOLDER
The new season of the Nascar Whelen Euro Series begins on the second weekend in April. The German Justin Kunz will then be in his second year in the European Nascar series. After a successful debut in the CAAL Racing team last year, Kunz is now going one step further. With the move to the PK Carsport championship team, the 19-year-old is in the 2nd year of the racing series and has good prerequisites to get closer to the top of the ELITE2 championship. The quartet of drivers from the Belgian team now took to the Circuit Zolder to test the completely new EuroNascar bolides and to shake off the rust of winter. Anthony Kumpen and Stienes Longin had it a little easier, both were already in action in the USA. Kumpen made his first NASCAR Xfinity start of the year in Daytona, while Bert Longin's son got his first oval experience in the Pro Late Model at New Smyrna Speedway. In addition to Justin Kunz, the Belgian Guillaume Dumarey will compete in the ELITE2, the Belgian comes from the national BMW M235i Racing Cup. While Kumpen and Longin were able to quickly familiarize themselves with the car again and Dumarey was already doing his second test drive, Justin Kunz was primarily concerned with getting back into the NASCAR step. The German last took a seat in the racing car last October as part of the season finale. Since then it has been a break from racing for Kunz, but the youngster quickly regained momentum.
PK CARSPORT - NASCAR WHELEN EURO SERIES WITH THE MASTERS
Collecting data and doing laps, that was the focus of the test drives on Thursday, time chasing was not the order of the day. In addition, PK Carsport tried out some settings on the vehicle. In any case, Kunz already felt more than well received in the team, the chemistry between the Belgians and the German is good. Anthony Kumpen also provided tips from time to time and was more than satisfied with the test drives himself. Due to other participants such as a Formula Renault 3.5, Lamborghini Huracán or some prototypes, it was often difficult to complete a free lap. The new bolides from the Belgians were still completely black, although the design had already been presented. On the track, however, you won't see it until the season opener in Valencia. Shortly after 5 p.m. Justin Kunz parked his new vehicle in the pits and finished the first EuroNascar ride of the year. The way the team around Anthony Kumpen works has already impressed the young German. Together with Stienes Longin, the first points for the car with starting number # 11 will soon be on the cards in Spain. Before the race weekend, Justin Kunz will be able to move the car around the course again on Thursday. Before the test drives, Kunz paid a visit to the team seat in Hasselt to adjust the seat. Here, too, the professionalism of the reigning champions was already evident, so that the youngster can hardly wait to tackle the Nascar Whelen Euro Series 2017 project together with his new team. With that in mind, Keep Racing!