LADA Sport has confirmed that Dutch driver Jaap van Lagen will race at next weekend’s FIA World Touring Car Championship round at the Nürburgring Nordschleife, replacing the unwell James Thompson.
Thompson was sidelined from competing at last weekend’s two races at the Hungaroring after apparently suffering complications from urgent dental surgery, although a report in AUTOSPORT claims that the Englishman has permanently departed the team – LADA is yet to respond to these claims.
Van Lagen joined reigning Super TC 2000 champion Néstor Girolami in an in-season test for the team alongside regular driver Rob Huff earlier this week, with the Russian outfit confirming his return to the series.
Van Lagen spent the 2008-2009 WTCC seasons racing in LADAs, and has subsequently competed in a number of sports car championships, such as the Porsche Supercup and Blancpain Endurance Series.
His selection for the Nürburgring Nordschleife round will be an advantage for the team, as the 38-year-old has competed a number of times on the daunting circuit in both VLN and the 24 Hour races.
The test, meanwhile, was marred by a high-speed crash for Huff, who suffered a front suspension failure on approach to Turn 1 and hit the barriers side-on at an estimated impact speed of 180km/h.
The Englishman was taken to hospital as a precaution, but was subsequently discharged.
“Big shunt at Turn 1 here in Budapest, lots of bumps and bruises but I will survive!” he wrote on Twitter. “Hitting a wall at 180kms is not fun but u can’t get rid of Huffy that easy (sic)!”
Images via FIA WTCC Media