Reigning champion Van der Ende joins Hutchison at Equipe Verschuur
22 February 2018
Reigning GT4 European Series champion Ricardo van der Ende will join Equipe Verschuur in an attempt to retain his title. Van der Ende will be partnering Finlay Hutchison, who will return to the Dutch team for a second season.
"First of all, I am delighted to be part of this project with Finlay, Verschuur and McLaren. Last year when I drove behind Finlay at Zandvoort I was really impressed with him," said Van der Ende.
"I know I can help him and Equipe Verschuur to the next level and, hopefully, the European title. Everything is looking very promising, I am looking forward to the first race and helping the team altogether."
The Dutchman won the European GT4 titles with an Ekris Motorsport BMW in 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2017, but will switch to Equipe Verschuur, following the decision by Ekris Motorsport to not race in the series this season.
"It was a bit of a shock when Ekris told me they were not going do the GT4 European Series this season. It is something completely different after 13 seasons with them. I am still an Ekris driver, now on loan at Equipe Verschuur," said Van der Ende, who is likely to compete for the Dutch team in selected races in other series.
Van der Ende and Hutchison will drive one of the Equipe Verschuur entered McLaren 570S GT4s in this year's championship. Hutchison made his GT4 debut with the Dutch team in 2017 and scored three podium finishes. The aim for 2018 is to fight for the Silver Cup title.
"I am really excited to pair up with Ricardo, last year’s champion, and the plan is to try and challenge for the title. This year there is a huge grid with some new teams and drivers, so I am sure the competition will be even harder, but we know we have a good package," said Hutchison.
"I’m looking forward to racing the McLaren again in GT4 and with a full year of experience under my belt of the car and the circuits, and with a fantastic new team-mate to learn more from, I’m confident we have a strong chance."
"We’re very happy we have Finlay and Ricardo together in our McLaren this year and I think we have all the opportunities to try and win. Of course, you need to have the luck too in motorsport but we have a good car and two good drivers so we need to make the most of that," said team owner Frans Verschuur, who is looking forward to the new season.