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Johnathan Hoggard joins Eurocup grid for Imola with R-ace GP

by Ida Wood

Photo: Joe Portlock / FIA Formula 3

R-ace GP has replaced Kush Maini with Johnathan Hoggard in its Formula Renault Eurocup line-up for the second round of the season at Imola.

Series returnee Maini had moved from M2 Competition to R-ace GP in the off-season, but the coronavirus pandemic led to a budget shortfall for the Indian and his programme with the team was cancelled ahead of the Monza season opener.

Like Maini, Hoggard is a graduate of BRDC British Formula 3 and was the winner of the Aston Martin Autosport BRDC Award last year. He won seven races in BRDC British F3 in 2019, and took eight wins in British Formula 4 the year before.

Despite the £200,000 cash prize that came with AMABA victory, as well as the coveted Formula 1 test with Red Bull Racing, Hoggard did not have the budget to step up to FIA F3 Championship as desired.

The 19-year-old’s primary programme for 2020 instead is Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, following an impressive sportscar debut in this year’s Daytona 24 Hours.

Hoggard has spoken multiple times about how sportscars is his focus for this season, but he has tested several times with Fortec Motorsports (which ran him in F3 and F4) in its new Dallara 320 car for Euroformula and is understood to have a race option in the series with the team.

He will not be the only driver making their Eurocup debut at Imola this weekend, as JD Motorsport has signed a second driver who will be revealed on Wednesday to race alongside William Alatalo.