2020 Castrol Toyota Racing Series champion – and eSports icon – Igor Fraga has continued his rapid rise up the junior formulae ranks this week and has been snapped up to be part of the Red Bull Junior programme. And TOYOTA GAZOO Racing NZ reckons he’s going to be a big plus for the racing giant’s junior programme.
The Japanese-born Brazilian has had an incredible start to 2020, securing a European Formula 3 seat with Charouz in February following his TRS championship win. During his five round New Zealand campaign, he vanquished two other Red Bull Juniors in Liam Lawson and Yuki Tsunoda, now racing in F3 and F2 respectively.
“We’re delighted for Igor at TOYOTA GAZOO Racing New Zealand,” said Castrol Toyota Racing Series category manager Nico Caillol. “He was a stand-out performer in all aspects of his championship campaign and has proven that racing talent is racing talent, regardless of whether it is shown on the real world track or in eSports. We all very much enjoyed having him as a part of this year’s series and are sure that after seeing him perform he will go well this year and will be a major asset to the Red Bull Junior programme.”
Fraga was hugely impressive in his TRS campaign for M2 Competition, quickly getting to grips with the new Toyota FT-60 racer and the challenging New Zealand circuits. He entered the final round of the championship trailing reigning champ Lawson on points, but won two of the final three races, including the New Zealand Grand Prix, to lift the title and secure 10 valuable Super Licence points in the process.
He now joins the likes of Lawson, Tsunoda, Carlin F2 rookie and former TRS racer Jehan Daruvala and Team Mugen’s Super Formula racer Juri Vips in a line-up of drivers who hope to one day follow in the footsteps of four-time F1 world champion Sebastian Vettel and GP winner Max Verstappen.