K-PAX Racing completes its full transition to a Lamborghini Squadra Corse customer team, complimenting its two-car Huracán GT3 EVO effort with three newcomers and one returning driver to its line-up, which is set to take on the 2021 GT World Challenge America Powered by AWS all-Pro Championship.
Three drivers familiar behind the wheel of the Huracán GT3 EVO will accompany the team in its manufactuer change – Lamborghini Factory Drivers Giovanni Venturini, Andrea Caldarelli and long-time developmental driver on the manufacturer’s customer programme Corey Lewis. Returning to the K-PAX Racing fold is Jordan Pepper, who helped lead the team into its first full season competing in Europe in 2020 aboard the team’s Bentley Continental GT3.
“We are all very excited about the potential this season,” K-PAX Racing Program Manager Darren Law said. “All four drivers are of championship caliber and have the credentials to prove it. Having three Factory Lamborghini drivers will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to our program and I have no doubt Jordan will be up to speed quickly. This past season he did a phenomenal job, He is very talented, he is fast and also has great race craft. He proved to us this year that he is the right driver for this program. We are all looking forward to testing and getting the race season started.”
Caldarelli and Pepper will join forces in the team’s No.3 entry, while Venturini and Lewis will co-pilot the No. 6 for seven events across six states and one Canadian province listed on the series schedule. Having competed regularly in the series since its inception in 2007, K-PAX Racing will have the advantage of revisiting each circuit listed – including Indianapolis Motor Speedway from last season, which was the final new track stateside needed to have experience at each entering an highly-anticipated season of firsts.
Caldarelli, hailing from Pescara, Italy, brings a wealth of experience to the K-PAX Racing program as it welcomes Lamborghini into its legacy. Caldarelli, 30, helped Squadra Corse to a 2019 title in GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS, as well as climbed the top-step in last season’s 24 Hours of Daytona. He joined the Lamborghini family in 2017 as a factory driver.
“I’m really excited to race with K-PAX Racing this year in GT World Challenge America,” Caldarelli said. “It is going to be an amazing experience for me to race with such a high-level team. It will be very exciting, but we will have a lot to learn. At the same time, we will definitely deliver great results. I will try my absolute best to offer all my knowledge about the Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO, in hopes that we can win this championship.”
K-PAX Racing will retain Pepper, a young, South African talent who showed his racecraft in the team’s debut in GT World Challenge Powered by AWS Endurance Cup last season. The 24-year-old spent the last two season’s under the Bentley Motorsport banner, with a major victory at the Bathurst 12 Hours and a top-10 showing at Nürburgring with the team in 2020.
“When the opportunity came up that K-PAX Racing was going to switch to Lamborghini, Darren asked me if I wanted to join the team and drive – something I could not say ‘no’ to,” Pepper said. “Jim [Haughey]’s team is one of the best teams I’ve ever had the priveledge of driving for. It was a tough first year, but I really enjoyed myself in 2020. This was a partnership that I did not want to let go, and it was something I wanted to continue. When the chance was there for 2021 and beyond, it was something I could not miss.”
Venturini, 29, joins K-PAX Racing as an addition from the Squadra Corse factory effort. Racing out of Vicenza, Italy, Venurini is entering his sixth season as a factory driver and in that time, earned the 2017 GT Open International Championship.
“Thank you to K-PAX Racing and Lamborghini Squadra Corse for this amazing opportunity,” Venturini said. “I’m really grateful and excited to can compete with a team like this with a lot of history and success. My first impression about my new ‘home’ is really great, I already saw a really good organization and harmony between them and drivers. It’s my first time in America but I’m sure with the help of my teammate Corey who has a lot of experience in all of these circuits I’m sure will be quite easy to learn everything. The team is ready and I’m sure will be a successful season.”
Lewis, 29, has been in the Lamborghini fold since 2014, working with its customer teams worldwide. The American racing veteran has made much of his success stateside, which includes a 2018 Lamborghini Trofeo USA Championship and sharing a 24 Hours of Daytona victory with Caldarelli.
“Being a part of K-PAX Racing is a very big deal with their accolades and history of winning,” Lewis said. “Having this opportunity come together with K-PAX Racing and Lamborghini, a manufacturer I’ve been driving for since 2014, is pretty sweet. I cannot wait to get to work with the team.”
Andrea Caldarelli – No. 3 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “Looking at the schedule, I’m very excited and focus to do a good job at these new tracks for me. We know this Lamborghini Huracán GT3 pairs very well with these Pirelli tires, and that’s the most important thing. We have a couple of years of experience with this car, and we will be doing our best starting with the first round.”
Jordan Pepper – No. 3 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “Back in America will be something new for me, but I love the style of racetracks – very old-school and I really have enjoyed the ones I’ve driven. We have some iconic tracks on the schedule, which will make it even more special. I’m really grateful for this opportunity.
I like the mid-engine though very different than the Bentley – it’s very twitchy and edgy which is something I’ll have to get used to. But, the car is very nimble and competing against them for so many years, I feel I know the strengths and weaknesses already.Hopefully I can jump in and adjust my driving style. I’m sure it’ll be a rocket ship. The team will obviously have to wrap their head around it, but we have a lot of test days, and I’m sure we’re going to open the season 110 percent prepared.”
Giovanni Venturini – No. 6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “The car will be new for K-PAX Racing but honestly, I don’t see any kind of problem because we set already a lot test days together and with Lamborghini support we will be competitive already in our first weekend in Sonoma.
What can I say about the car? In 2018 I did a lot of the job during the development to make the Huracán GT3 EVO really competitive and to be honest I’m proud of it. We can wait and see what the future bring us, but I’m quiet sure will be nice.”
Corey Lewis – No. 6 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO – “I think it’s massive to have Andrea [Caldarelli], Giovanni [Venturini] and myself, and Jordan [Pepper] is a quick-study and blazing-fast in every car he drives. I’ve worked very closely with Andrea and winning the 24 Hours of Daytona with him last season, he’s been great to work with. I’m looking forward to working with K-PAX Racing, and having worked with Andrea in the past and also having Venturini, it will speed up the new car process and dial things in quickly. All-around, it’s one of the better line-ups we could have.
Seeing the developmental process from the first-generation Huracán GT3 EVO, the driveability and technology have been night-and-day. Every year we continue, as a brand, increasing performance. I think through the accolades and the race results we’ve shown, the Huracán is a very strong car. Moving forward, I feel we will be very dominant.”