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SA racer keeps chasing dream with Kessel

Cape Town GT racer David Perel has re-signed to drive for Kessel Racing Ferrari in the 2017 Blancpain GT Endurance Series, following an extremely successful season with the team in 2016.

"We are incredibly happy to have David Perel continue with Kessel Racing Ferrari for 2017," team owner Ronnie Kessel confirmed. "The 488 GT3 is a fantastic car that we used to win the Blancpain Pro-AM Championship in 2016 and I expect David to deliver a similar result this year in the AM Championship with teammates Marco Zanuttini and Jacques Duyver." 

Perel is delighted to continue his 2016 momentum and to impress again in 2017 after ending last season with a win at the Gulf 12-hour at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi. "My first season with Kessel was a steep learning curve, but we ended on a high with three race wins in a row," David admitted. "I am immensely proud to continue with Kessel and Ferrari in the biggest GT3 Championship in the world.

"Our aim is to win 
this year Blancpain Endurance AM Championship that runs across Europe in Italy, the UK, France, Belgium and Spain, with the shortest race being a three hour and the longest 24 hours."

David dreamed of racing in Blancpain GT from when he first raced karts at the tender age of 15 in Cape Town's Western Province Karting Championship. Perel went on to win five Provincial and National Karting Championships by the time he was 23, before progressing to single-seaters the following year, but a lack of funding - a common occurrence in the world of racing - paused David's race career.

Twenty-hour work days, seven days a week and five years later, Perel had saved up enough for one more GT race; one last chance at making his dream come true. In typical David Perel style, he went for it well enough to see to it that he was offered the opportunity to race the 2015 Italian GT Championship with Lamborghini Bonaldi Motorsport. 

Perel has since scored regular pole positions and fastest laps - more than any other driver in his class and was awarded South African colours for 2016 on his performance on the international stage at the annual Motor Sport South Africa Awards. Taking part again in the world’s biggest GT Championship will no doubt see him continue to achieve great things, with David's ultimate goal being the opportunity to compete in Le Mans 24 hour. 

David’s outstanding achievements in his first year with Kessel Racing Ferrari set this South African racer apart as the one to watch as he looks ahead to a most exciting year ahead.  “I’m looking forward to getting back on the track with my co-drivers Marco and Jacques and I want to say a huge word of thanks to Ronnie Kessel, Alan Macdonald and Giacomo Piccini for putting this deal together. "Now I just can't wait to drive the brand new Ferrari 488 GT3!"  

The Blancpain GT Endurance series will include five races across Europe. Find the calendar here. All races will be televised live on EuroSport and livestreamed on YouTube.