Elton Julian

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Elton Julian (born August 16, 1974) is an American professional racing driver and racing team owner born in the Canary Islands of Spain. He grew up in Ecuador and the United States.[1] He speaks English, French and Spanish fluently.

Racing career[edit]

Single Seat Formula Cars[edit]

Early career[edit]

Julian began his racing career in Southern California at age 13, racing go karts before moving on to Formula Ford at the Skip Barber Racing School where he won 36 races from 49 starts and four championships in 1990.

Formula Three[edit]

In 1992, he raced in the British Formula Three Championship for the Alan Docking Racing and Fortec Motorsport teams finishing 8th in the championship with one pole position and one win, becoming the youngest winner in series history.[2] That same year he also competed in the Indy Lights series at Vancouver and finished 8th. In 1993, he raced in the French Formula Three Championship and finished third in the drivers championship for the Formula Project team.

Formula One[edit]

In 1994, Julian signed a multi-year test and reserve driver contract with the French Larrousse Formula One team, completing several tests at Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet, France. In his first test he was over half a second faster than regular driver Erik Comas and Julian was considered a potential candidate for a race seat in 1995. However, the Larrousse team closed its doors for financial reasons just before the start of the 1995 season despite last minute attempts to save the squad by the F3000 racing team DAMS and other interested parties.[3]

Formula 3000/Formula Atlantic/Formula Nippon[edit]

In preparation for his testing duties with Larrousse, Julian entered the FIA International Formula 3000 series for three races in 1994 and made his debut at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium for the Omegaland team. He competed in the remaining races of the 1994 International Formula 3000 season and finished 13th in France at Magny-Cours. He returned to Europe for the 1996 International Formula 3000 season and competed full-time for Nordic Racing. The season was not particularly successful as the team failed to come to grips with the all new Lola chassis and Julian only broke into the points at the final race of the season at the Hockenheimring in Germany with a fifth place result. He finished 14th in the championship. In 1997 he tested a Formula Nippon car at the Suzuka Circuit in Japan and was offered a contract for the following season but a lack of funding kept him out of racing until 1999 when he made two Atlantic Championship starts for the PDR team resulting in a fifth place finish at Long Beach and a DNF in Montreal.

Sports Cars[edit]

When the Larrousse Formula One team shut down in 1995, Julian turned to sports cars and drove in two World Sportscar Championship races with Euromotorsport in a Ferrari F333SP prototype finishing second in class at the 24 Hours of Daytona and setting a new lap record at the 12 Hours of Sebring. After the end of his single seater career and another long absence from racing which lasted from 1999 until 2005, he raced a DOME S101 LMP1 prototype in the 2005 24 Hours of Le Mans with Jan Lammers and the Racing for Holland team. He finished fifth in the prototype class and seventh place overall, recorded the teams fastest race laps and was the highest finishing rookie in the race. He then drove a Courage C65 LMP2 prototype in the American Le Mans Series' Petit Le Mans for Kruse Motorsport and finished fourth in class. In 2006, he drove in the LMP2 prototype class at the 12 Hours of Sebring for Barazi Epsilon with another fourth place finish in the LMP2 category. In 2010 with the introduction of the American Le Mans Series' new LMPC prototype class, Julian signed on to race the Oreca FLM09 chassis for Gunnar Racing. He finished the season third in the drivers championship, with seven podium finishes in eight starts and four wins (Long Beach, Lime Rock, Road America and Mosport). He ended the 2011 American Le Mans Series season fourth in the LMPC prototype class championship with five podium finishes in seven starts including a win from pole position at Lime Rock and a first place finish at the six hour Laguna Seca round.[4][5] Julian also drove the Oreca prototype in the FLM class of the 2011 Le Mans Series season finishing 2nd at Circuit Paul Ricard in France, 2nd at Spa Francorchamps in Belgium and 4th at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola, Italy. He finished the European Le Mans Series championship third in the drivers standings. For 2012, Julian signed with the Greaves Motorsport team to drive the Zytek-Nissan Z11SN LMP2 prototype chassis in the eight round 2012 FIA World Endurance Championship season, which included the 80th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.[6][7] On October 25, 2012 in Shanghai, China, at the end of the FIA WEC season that included eight points finishes from eight starts, Julian announced his retirement from international competition as a driver.[8] His professional driving record in sports cars stands at 6 wins, 16 podiums (including the 12 Hours of Sebring, 24 Hours of Daytona, 1000 km of Spa-Francorchamps and Petit Le Mans), two pole positions, two fastest laps, one new lap record, and 29 finishes from 30 starts.

Team Principal[edit]

Starting in 2007 Julian began to focus on team ownership, founding DragonSpeed and entering cars in the American Le Mans Series, Rolex Grand-Am Series, Blancpain Lamborghini Super Trofeo, Pirelli World Challenge, Ferrari Challenge and Pirelli Drivers Cup Series.[1] In 2011 Julian entered the DragonSpeed Ferrari F430 GT in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona and acting as team owner/team manager, brought the Ferrari home to a 15th place finish in the GT class, making the car the highest finishing F430 in the history of the event. As a result of the performance at Daytona, DragonSpeed and Julian were asked to provide technical support for the new Ferrari 458 Italia GA (Grand Am) development program which began testing in July 2011 at Daytona.[9] In 2012 DragonSpeed ran an extensive test program with their new Audi R8 LMS ultra FIA GT3 in preparation for the 2013 Dubai 24 Hours endurance race, marking the international debut for the team.[10] DragonSpeed had a successful run in Dubai under the direction of Julian, finishing 11th overall from 80 cars and 5th in the A6-Am class[11] and followed that up with a 17th place finish for the Audi R8 LMS Ultra at the 2013 12 Hours of Bathurst in Australia. Julian then brought the team back to the United States to contest the 2013 American Le Mans Series in the Prototype Challenge class with Mirco Schultis, Renger Van Der Zande and Pierre Kaffer sharing driver duties. For 2014 DragonSpeed is mounting a two car effort in the Pirelli World Challenge series, with Julian running a pair of Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia race cars in the GT class for drivers Mike Hedlund and Henrik Hedman.

24 Hours of Le Mans results[edit]

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
Pos.
2005 Netherlands Racing for Holland Netherlands Jan Lammers
Netherlands John Bosch
Dome S101-Judd LMP1 346 7th 5th
2012 United Kingdom Greaves Motorsport Germany Christian Zugel
Mexico Ricardo González
Zytek Z11SN-Nissan LMP2 348 12th 5th

References[edit]

External links[edit]