Nash targets Sprint Series title

James Nash. (Patrick Hecq Photography)
James Nash. (Patrick Hecq Photography)

James Nash believes he can challenge for the Blancpain Sprint Series championship this year after a glowing debut season in GT racing.

The 29-year-old from Newport Pagnell has been confirmed at Belgian W Racing Team at the wheel of an Audi R8 LMS ultra for the 2015 season.

Nash, who impressively scored three top-10 placings with WRT in last year’s five-race Blancpain Endurance Series – including an excellent third place on his Spa 24 Hour debut – is relishing the prospect of a second season with one of Audi’s leading customer teams.

“I’m excited to be driving with WRT again and to be making my debut in the Blancpain Sprint Series,” confirmed Nash.

“In my opinion it’s the most competitive GT series contested by some of the best drivers in the world.”

Nash won the 2006 BRDC Rising Star Award before finishing second in the British Formula Ford Championship the following year along with being short-listed for the McLaren Autosport BRDC Driver of the Year.

In 2011, he won the Walter Hayes Trophy having been runner-up in 2006.

Nash switched to touring cars in 2008, claiming fourth place in the SEAT León Eurocup before contesting the British Touring Car Championship for the next three years culminating in becoming the 2011 Independents’ Champion.

A two-year foray in to the FIA World Touring Car Championship saw Nash finish third overall in the 2013 Driver’s Championship and win the Yokohama Driver’s Trophy.

But after impressing in the Endurance Series, Nash believes he can shine in the shorter Sprint Series.

“It’s going to be another challenging year,” Nash added.

“Out of the seven venues in this year’s Sprint Series, I’ve only previously raced at Brands Hatch and the Algarve so I’ll be learning many new tracks again.

“I’ve only had five races in the Audi R8 LMS ultra.

“I was generally pleased with what I achieved last year but still have a lot to learn about the car which has become phenomenally successful around the world.

“I’ve chosen to race in the Sprint series in an attempt to gain more ‘seat’ time as there are qualifying and main races each weekend.

“I’m also aiming to compete in the Spa 24 Hours again having claimed third there last year on my first ever visit to the Belgian track but this is unconfirmed at this stage.”

The seven-round season gets underway on April 6 at Nogaro in France, before culminating in Baku, Azerbaijan in October.

And British fans will get a chance to see Nash in action on May 10 at the second round of the season at Brands Hatch in Kent.