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Former single-seater rising star Garry Findlay has set his sights on racing at the Le Mans 24 Hours after committing himself to a career switch that will see him racing sportscars in 2013.

The Suffolk native was a frontrunner in Formula Ford before a lack of budget hindered his progress up the single-seater ladder, but a change of focus looks set to pay dividends as he embarks on a season in the burgeoning VdeV Series for sports prototypes.

The category is seen as a stepping stone for drivers keen to make a career in sportscar racing and, having made a promising first foray into the discipline in 2012, Findlay expects to pilot a Wolf GR08 chassis for G-Cat Racing at the majority of this season’s rounds. He has already started strongly, showing front-running pace during the first race of 2013, in Barcelona, last month and is excited by the opportunities that lie ahead.

“Obviously, every driver dreams about making it to F1 when they start racing, but the reality is that very few ever have the chance to make it that far,” Findlay admits, “Without the financial backing to stay on the single-seater ladder, I quickly realised that that dream wasn’t going to come true, so I have had to turn my attention to other things. Sportscar racing is as good at it gets, with drivers getting a lot of track time in series where racing is usually very competitive.

“The VdeV Series has attracted a lot of entries, so it should allow me to showcase my abilities with an eye to the future. If I can convince team owners in other series that I can do the job, I’m hoping that it could open doors to bigger things – in GT or even LMP2 – in the next year or so. Beyond that, Le Mans is the ultimate ambition for any sportscar driver, and that’s where my sights are set now.”

His 2012 showings convinced G-Cat team owner Greg Caton that Findlay would be a valuable addition to his line-up for the coming year, but the programme would still not have been possible without the involvement of Travis drummer – and confirmed petrolhead – Neil Primrose. The musician owns a stable of sportscars, including the latest-spec Wolf, and will be paired with Findlay at the races that do not conflict with his touring and recording schedules.

“This season probably wouldn’t have happened without Neil,” Findlay insists, “Greg put the two of us in touch, and I’m delighted that Neil wanted me to drive his car. He has spent a lot of money upgrading the Wolf, and I am determined to prove that it was worth it by putting it at the front of the VdeV field.”

G-Cat had originally planned to run Primrose and Findlay in the SPEED Euroseries, but a lack of entries persuaded the team to turn its attention to VdeV in time for the opening six-hour race at the Circuit de Catalunya. Although running on different tyres initially created a set-up headache for the squad, it qualified twelfth out of 32 cars, before Findlay took the #27 machine up to fourth place during his opening stint. The three-man team – with fellow Briton Scott Fitzgerald joining the regular pair – eventually slipped back down the order, with Findlay’s second stint, in the dark, coming too late to make a difference, but all were confident that there was more to come in future outings.

“Barcelona was very much a learning weekend,” Findlay confirms, “We came away with a lot of data and will be able to go testing and work with that to make improvements. We should have a car much more to our liking at the next race. I know that I can run at the same pace as the frontrunners – who include some very experienced sportscar drivers – and, with a good car and set-up, who knows what we can achieve.”

Although Primrose will be absent, Findlay’s next outing should come in the VdeV’s four-hour event at Paul Ricard in the south of France at the end of May (31 May-2 June). The 23-year old expects to share the Wolf with fellow G-Cat driver Rowland Kinch.