RLR MSport’s season may be set to receive an extra ‘teenage kick’, as 17-year old Lithuanian Gustas Grinbergas joins Malthe Jakobsen and James Dayson for the 2020 European Le Mans Series (ELMS) 4 Hours of Monza (9-11 October).
Having scaled the podium during the opening round of the 2020 season at Circuit Paul Ricard, RLR MSport threatened to repeat the feat on the ELMS’s second visit to Le Castellet in August.
However, there will be another change within the RLR MSport camp in the penultimate race of 2020 at Autodromo Nazionale Monza, as Lithuania’s Grinbergas will replace Robert Megennis in the #15 Ligier JSP320, which he will share with fellow teenager Jakobsen and Canadian Am Dayson.
Earlier this year at the age of 16, Grinbergas became the youngest ACO rules race winner ever when he secured the LMP2 Am victory in Round 2 of the 2019-20 Asian Le Mans Series at The Bend Motorsport Park in South Australia.
He followed that up with another class win at Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia, but having had a poor run of luck during his maiden European Le Mans Series LMP3 campaign in 2019, the teenager hopes to make an immediate impact with RLR MSport.
“I’m very happy to be joining RLR MSport at Monza, as the team has a very strong package and I believe we will be one of the favourites in LMP3,” said Grinbergas. “I’m looking for a chance to show my true pace and there’s no better place to do it than the ‘Temple of Speed’. If everything goes right, I believe we can fight for the podium. I will have very little time to settle into my new surroundings, but the ability to adapt separates the good from the bad drivers, and I’m sure I can jump straight in and be fast.”
Jakobsen added: “Competing in the Michelin Le Mans Cup ‘Road to Le Mans’ has kept me and James (Dayson) sharp – the short gaps between races help you stay in the zone. I have no experience of Monza but my Le Mans performances show I learn new circuits quickly and I can’t wait to get back in the car in Italy.
“We have a new teammate, with Gustas Grinbergas joining us. It’s always nice to have consistency, but it doesn’t make much of a difference to me, especially if they’re quick and know what to do. It helps if teammates have similar driving styles, and there is a lot of agreement between James and I when it comes to making setup choices. With so many unknowns, it’s hard to set any goals for the weekend. Everyone at RLR MSport will simply do their best and we’ll see where we end up.”