Dutchman Strous joins ASR-Nelan for 2009

Dutch driver Junior Strous has signed to race with ASR-Nelan (formerly known as American Spirit Racing) in the 2009 Firestone Indy Lights season.

The 22-year-old Dutchman, who raced the last two seasons in the Atlantics, will drive the No. 18 car for co-owners Jon Lewis and Rick Nelan as he attempts to move up the racing ladder.

"I am very happy to race in the Firestone Indy Lights Series in 2009," Strous said. "My aim is to race in the (IndyCar Series) in the future. Insiders advised me to compete one year in the (Firestone) Indy Lights to gain experience on the oval tracks.

"I love to race in America. The fans are close and to race on the Indy Brickyard is one of my dreams."

Strous finished fifth in Atlantics in 2008 after leading the championship for most of the season. He won at the race at Mont Tremblant from the pole and recorded three podium finishes. He was given the Gilles Villeneuve Award at the end of the season. He previously raced in competitive Formula Renault series in Europe and won the U.S. Formula Renault 2000 Winter Invitational in 2004.

"Junior brings a wealth of driver talent to our team," stated Lewis and Nelan. "He's a proven winner and dedicated to being the best. We are looking forward to the 2009 season with Junior on board and we're going to give him everything we have to help him win the Championship."

For the second consecutive year, the ASR-NELAN will be fielded in partnership with Paul Diatlovich, whose PDM Racing will be the operational partner of the program. Veteran engineer Tim Wardrop will act as Chief Engineer for the Team.

ASR-NELAN Motorsports will begin an extensive pre-season testing program in February in preparation for the 2009 season.

"I am exited about this great opportunity to race for Jon Lewis, Rick Nelan and ASR-NELAN Motorsports this year," Strous said. "I am sure we can win races."

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