Nissan places Moffat in Dubai 24 Hour

James Moffat

James Moffat

Nissan V8 Supercars driver James Moffat will compete in January’s Dubai 24 Hour as part of the manufacturers’ global driver exchange program.

Moffat has been placed in Nissan’s GT Academy Team RJN squad, which will campaign two 370Z Nismos in the January 9-11 event.

Moffat will drive alongside former Formula 1 competitor Karun Chandhok, FIA World Endurance Championship driver Tor Graves, Middle Eastern GT Academy winner Salman Al Khater and South African GT Academy winner Ashley Oldfield.

Spaniard Lucas Ordonez will lead the second car, which also includes GT Academy drivers Miguel Faisca, Florian Strauss, Nick McMillen and Stansislav Aksenov.

Nissan’s global motorsport director Darren Cox has spearheaded the driver exchange program and has shown great enthusiasm for Moffat’s potential after visiting the Clipsal 500 and Bathurst 1000 V8 Supercars events in 2013.

Moffat will drive a 370Z Nismo in the race

Moffat will drive a 370Z Nismo in the race

“Every year the Dubai 24 Hours provides a great test of our newest GT Academy graduates,” said Cox.

“This year in Dubai we are using the Nismo Global Driver Exchange program to get together some Nissan drivers from around the world.

“Australian James Moffat has impressed me this year in the competitive V8 Supercars Championship, not only with his win, but his speed and application across the season.

“I am very pleased that we can now offer him this chance on the world stage.”

Moffat, who has also been touted as a potential starter in next year’s Spa 24 Hours aboard one of Nissan’s GT-R GT3s, expressed his excitement at driving in Dubai.

“We’ve been fortunate to race our regular V8 Supercars in different parts of the world, but this will be a totally new and different experience for me in the 370Z Nismo,” he said.

“I’ve also never raced in a 24 Hour event before, so that will be a new challenge – adapting to a new car, around a foreign track and racing in the dark!

“I’m looking forward to being a part of the Nismo Global Driver Exchange program, and we’ll be aiming to finish as high as we can in Dubai.”

The Dubai drive ensures Moffat is the first Australian to benefit from the exchange program.

Rick Kelly is already locked into to steer a Nismo-run GT-R GT3 in February’s Bathurst 12 Hour.

The team is yet to confirm its remaining crew for Bathurst although Ordonez, who tested a V8 Supercar at Winton in August, is thought a potential starter. An unseeded Japanese driver will likely complete the line-up.

 

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