MAZDA ROAD TO INDY
Felipe Ortiz has spent the
last few years building a
name for himself in Brazil,
and the 17-year-old
will hope to create a
similar impression with
his first foray into
American racing this
season as part of
“Afterburner is a
great team and I’m
pretty sure we’ll be on
the podium this year,”
said Ortiz, who will be
based in Orlando, Fla.
“Competing in USF2000
is a dream come true – I
have been aiming for this
since I started racing
karts in Brazil.”
IS THIS BRAZIL’S
NEXT BIG THING?
For the latest from the
go to usf2000.com
For the latest from
Pro Mazda, check out
LIGHTING UP LIGHTS
IT’S NICO TIME
The 2016 car count is set to be up from
the ’ 15 figure, and if confirmation of Felix
Rosenqvist as part of Belardi’s Indy Lights
Presented by Cooper Tires line-up for
2016 is any indicator, the series will not
be short on serious quality, too.
The Swede arrives in the series as the
reigning champion in the competitive
European Formula 3 Championship, and
has also won the prestigious F3 events at
Macau (twice), Zandvoort (twice) and Pau.
His road course credentials were on display
when he topped the times in pre-season
testing at Sebring, although he was 12th
at the end of his first oval test in Phoenix.
Do you remember the first USF2000
race at Barber last year? Nico Jamin
does. It was the only time all season that
he didn’t finish on the podium.
An impressive 10 wins and an
inevitable championship later, the 20-
year-old Frenchman earned a promotion
into Pro Mazda, the next rung on the
Mazda Road to Indy ladder, and was an
early pace-setter in testing at COTA (left).
“It was a struggle at the beginning of
the day at COTA, but we figured out the
setup and finished with the best lap with
quite a big gap - so it was a great in the
end!” he noted.
Among those also graduating from
USF2000 is last year’s runner-up Jake
Eidson, who will suit up alongside Jamin
at Cape Motorsports Wayne Taylor
Racing, and Aaron Telitz, who was third
in the points in 2015 and will be racing
with Team Pelfrey.
Among those taking the fight to
Rosenqvist will be RC Enerson, who was
fourth in last year’s championship and
topped the Phoenix test for Schmidt, just
ahead of teammate and reigning Pro
Mazda champion Santiago Urrutia.
Another newcomer worth keeping an
eye on will be Britain’s Dean Stoneman,
who’ll form part of Andretti’s three-pronged attack. Stoneman won the
Formula 2 championship in 2010, but a
cancer diagnosis sidelined him for two
years of treatment and recovery. Since
his return, he has finished runner-up in
the 2014 GP3 championship.
THERE’S PLENTY OF TALENT AT THE SHARP END OF THIS YEAR’S LIGHTS FIELD.
RUNAWAY USF2000 CHAMP NICO JAMIN TAKES THE NEXT STEP
For the latest from
Indy Lights, head to
(LEFT) Felix Rosenqvist
keeps busy... In addition
to Indy Lights, he’ll
share a Mercedes-AMG
GT3 with Tristan Vautier
in the Blancpain Series,
and act as a reserve
driver for Mercedes in
the DTM. (BELOW)