Simon Evans, elder brother of Mitch Evans, will return to the iconic Tempelhof Circuit, where he was crowned Champion of the 2020 Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY race series, three years after an epic ‘lockdown showdown’ finale.
The 32-year-old Kiwi will step into the cockpit of the Jaguar I-TYPE 6 as part of his long-awaited prize for winning the all-electric production-based race series.
EXPLAINED: A quick guide to the Berlin Rookie Test
“I’m incredibly excited to be taking part in the official rookie test for Jaguar TCS Racing," says Evans. "The Jaguar family has always meant a lot to me, and I’m really looking forward to this opportunity. It’s the first time I will have been back to Berlin since I won the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY at the Tempelhof circuit. It’s definitely going to bring back some great memories. I know the track very well but it’s been a long time since I’ve driven a single-seater. I’m going to enjoy myself, while hopefully getting some valuable data for the team.”
South African Sheldon Van Der Linde, will join Evans in his GEN3 test debut. The BMW factory driver has raced in DTM for the last four years and is the current 2022 DTM Champion. The 23-year-old started karting at the age of six, gained a wealth of experience and won multiple national titles before moving into cars in 2014. Since then, Sheldon has continued his impressive career and seen success in the ADAC Total 24 hours of Nürburgring.
“I'm very proud to be joining Jaguar TCS Racing for my first rookie test in the Jaguar I-TYPE 6," said van der Linde. "The rookie test is a really great opportunity for young and upcoming drivers to try new motorsport categories and I’m really looking forward to driving the Gen3 race car for the first time. I’ve visited the team in Grove and have been working closely with the engineers to familiarise myself with the simulator, systems and procedures to be best prepared for what's ahead in Berlin. From what I’ve heard, Formula E is particularly challenging if you’re a rookie, so it will be great to get some valuable experience in the all-electric racing series.”
“The test is an important day for both teams and drivers and I’m very pleased that we have Simon and Sheldon driving the Jaguar I-TYPE 6," adds James Barclay, Jaguar TCS Racing Team Principal. "It’s an opportunity to give new and upcoming talent a chance and assessment in the GEN3 race car and for us as a team to continue to build valuable data and insight into this new car.
"Simon has been a stand-out member of the Jaguar family, racing in the Jaguar I-TYPE eTROPHY for two seasons and ultimately becoming champion in a very competitive season. Mitch is also very proud to see his brother have this opportunity. Sheldon’s resume is without question and we are very pleased to have this very talented young driver in one of our cars. We're looking forward to seeing how he approaches his time with us and his feedback.”