Jessica Bäckman confirmed in the Hyundai Motorsport Junior Driver programme
Swedish TCR talent Jessica Bäckman – together with her brother Andreas – will again be part of the Hyundai Motorsport junior programme, targeting a future WTCR seat.
Hyundai Motorsport announced four drivers to be part of their 2020 Customer Racing Junior Driver initiative, a programme that supports young talents in their pursuit of a professional motor sport career in the top echelons of touring cars competitions.
Together with Australian TCR champion Will Brown, Hungarian Daniel Nagy and Andreas Bäckman, for the second year in a row the small selection included 22-year old Jessica Bäckman, who together with her brother will once again be at the start of the prestigious TCR Europe championship.
The Bäckman siblings will thus receive the support from the works Hyundai engineers, as well as the precious mentoring from the current WTCR drivers, with the aim of building an all-round professional profile on and off the track.
"It feels super exciting to be one of the few chosen racing drivers in the Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing Junior Driver initiative once again." - said Andreas. "We are truly honored that Hyundai Motorsport keeps believing in us and we will do everything we can to make this year the best so far".
"The opportunity also gives us the best possible conditions in order to develop as drivers and eventually reach our goal: to compete in FIA WTCR against the best touring car drivers in the world" - added Jessica.
Bäckman is expected to drive again for 2019-championship winning team Target Competition in a Hyundai i30 N TCR, after making her debut last year in the continental TCR series. It was a great season for the young Swede, who made history in Hockenheim when she became the first ever woman to finish on the podium in the European TCR championship. She added two more podiums to her resumé during guest appearances in the German and Scandinavian TCR championships, effectively presenting herself as a very interesting prospect in the world of touring cars.
The Bäckmans will also be part of the Swedish National Team - a support programme by the Swedish Automobile Sports Federation that targets the development of young promising talents. Jessica, as part of the Sweden Junior Team, had the opportunity to represent her country in last year's inaugural edition of the FIA Motorsport Games in Vallelunga (Italy), where she finished 6th in the touring cars category.
"Right now, my goal is to go to WTCR in a few years, that's my goal." - she told us last year after her last championship race at Monza. And, by the look of things, she seems on the right path to accomplish that goal.
The last woman to enter a WTCR event - touring car's world championship - was Sabine Schmitz, as the famous German lady entered the Nurburgring round in 2015 scoring a 10th place and one point.
2020 TCR Europe will start on 21-23 August on the French circuit of Le Castellet.
2020 TCR Europe calendar
Le Castellet, France - 21-23 August
Zolder, Belgium - 11-13 September
Monza, Italy - 26-27 September
Barcelona, Spain - 22-24 October
Jarama, Spain - 6-8 November