Hyundai Motorsport has named its Customer Racing junior drivers for the 2021 season, with its TCR names including Jáchym Galáš, Tyler Maxson and Tyler Gonzalez.
Entering into its third year, the programme aims to help young racers to develop their careers, providing support from engineers at the manufacturer’s Customer Racing department as well as mentoring from Hyundai’s factory drivers.
The scheme also offers support for the drivers to develop their profiles away from the track, including media coaching.
Jáchym Galáš, from Czechia, graduates from TCR Eastern Europe, where he raced a Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR last year, to TCR Europe in a Hyundai i30 N TCR prepared by Janík Motorsport.
16-year-old Tyler Maxson joins the programme, having put in a dominant performance in TC America, where he won 11 of 16 races in a Copeland Motorsports-run Hyundai Veloster N TCR.
Tyler Gonzalez also raced in TC America last year, albeit in the TCA class in a Hyundai Veloster. Both Americans will share a Copeland Motorsport-run Veloster N TCR this year in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge. The duo already took part in their first race together at Road Atlanta in October last year.
Mitchell Cheah Min Jie is the final driver named in the programme, with the 22-year-old having already raced Hyundai i30 N machinery in WTCR at Sepang in 2019 and Aragón in 2020, as well as selected races in TCR Malaysia and TCR Germany in the past two years.
Malaysian Cheah will continue to race for Engstler Motorsport in a yet-to-be-confirmed series.
“The commitment to nurture young driving talent is a vital part of the Customer Racing department, and Hyundai Motorsport in general,” said Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing Operations Leader Andrew Johns.
“We recognize that we can build the best cars possible, but we also need strong drivers that are able to get the maximum performance on the track, or on the rally stages.
“Through the Customer Racing Junior Driver initiative we can support some of the best young drivers competing with Hyundai customers in major rally and TCR championships around the world.
“By working closely with them and their teams we can help each one constantly improve, in order to get the best possible results and build their professional motorsport careers towards a place in the WRC or on the FIA WTCR grid.”