Jono LesterNew Zealand Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge driver Jono Lester has recently completed a successful Porsche Supercup test programme with Lechner Racing at the Hungaroring Grand Prix Circuit in Budapest, Hungary.

The 19-year old travelled to Europe in early July and spent two days behind the wheel of Damien Faulkner’s Porsche GT3 Cup car around the 4.4km circuit, alongside both Faulkner and his Slovakian team mate Stefan Rosina.

Irishman Faulkner scored pole position and the race win at the Hungaroring in 2008, while Rosina currently lies third overall in the 2009 Porsche Mobil1 Supercup points standings, giving Lester two highly competitive benchmarks throughout the test.

“My time behind the wheel of a Supercup car was an amazing experience, as was the atmosphere of the European circuits, and both the professionalism and hospitality I experienced as part of the Lechner Racing team,” Lester said.

“[Team owner] Walter Lechner is not only a highly accomplished driver in his own right, but he went out of his way to make sure I got the most out of my time with the team, and I have come away far better for it.”

The Supercup-spec GT3 Cup cars are largely similar to those running in the New Zealand championship; however the addition of carbon ceramic brakes was a new learning curve for Lester.

“There were certainly positives and negatives. Learning to control the heat in the brakes took a while as they gain and lose heat so rapidly; however it was good that when the brakes were pinched, a small lock up could be released without any troubles. We have a bit more trouble slowing them up here in New Zealand, that’s for sure!”

In follow up to the Hungary test, Lester spent a fortnight with Lechner Racing at their base in Faistenau, Austria, and joined the team at the Nurburgring Grand Prix where Rosina scored second place behind points leader Jeroen Bleekemolen.

Now back home in New Zealand, Lester is focussed on securing a drive for the 2010 Porsche Mobil1 Supercup and finalising preparations for his fourth season in the domestic Battery Town Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, beginning in November.

In the meantime, he will be assisting Juno New Zealand ( with the development of their new Synergy V8 engine, which has recently been implemented into the British Juno SSE-NZ sports car.