Austrian racer Ferdinand Habsburg will launch a three-pronged assault on the Formula Renault 2.0 Eurocup, Northern European Cup (NEC) and Euro Formula Open series in 2016, it was confirmed today.

Having demonstrated his latent potential with his first two victories in car racing and an eventual fourth in points in the Toyota Racing Series New Zealand, Habsburg returns to Europe with ambitions of continuing his strong run of form in Formula Renault 2.0.

After scoring a best finish of fifth at the Red Bull Ring as a rookie before his season was cut short through injury, the 18 year-old has chosen to remain with Richard Dutton’s highly experienced Fortec Motorsport outfit for both the NEC and Eurocup, which visits the streets of Monte Carlo during the Monaco Grand Prix weekend (May 29th) for the first time.

Fortec won three consecutive NEC driver’s titles between 2012 and 2014 and will give Habsburg every possible chance to compete at the sharp end of the field against some of the best up-and-coming junior single seater talents in the world.

Entering its first season as the headline category in the World Series by Renault, the Formula Renault Eurocup has established itself as a vital stepping stone on the road to the sport’s highest echelons, with current F1 drivers Daniel Ricciardo, Valtteri Bottas, Kevin Magnussen, Carlos Sainz Jr. and Daniil Kvyat, plus FIA WEC champion Brendon Hartley all passing through on their way up the ranks.

The season will commence with the first round of the Eurocup at Motorland Aragon, Spain, on April 16th.

Where his Formula Renault commitments allow, Habsburg will also race in the Euro Formula Open championship with Spanish team DriveX. It follows a successful one-off outing for the team at Barcelona last year, which yielded an excellent fourth place finish after an intense battle with Mercedes DTM star and former Macau GP winner Dani Juncadella.

Despite his lack of experience in the more powerful machinery, Habsburg scored an encouraging double-podium in the Euro Formula Open Winter Series meeting at Paul Ricard.

“I’m really excited to get my European season underway – it will be a very busy year where we can hopefully fight for some wins,” said Habsburg. “I’m very happy to work with Fortec again in Formula Renault 2.0 because they have a -great record of developing young drivers for a career in racing and I’m confident we can have lots of success together. I learned a lot from my time in New Zealand and I’m going into the season a lot more rounded and developed than last season – I can’t wait to get started!”