BTCC RACE WINNERS HMS TO RUN LEGENDARY ‘SHERMAN’ AUDI A4 FOR ALEX DAY IN BRAND NEW TCT CHAMPIONSHIP
Successful touring car squad HMS Racing will take on a new challenge in 2019 after this morning, Wednesday, 19th December, confirming a deal with former Ginetta Junior racer Alex Day to contest the brand new Touring Car Trophy with the ex-Rob Austin ‘Sherman’ Audi A4.
Colchester 19-year-old Day, who has been sharing the multiple BTCC race-winning Audi A4 in the Britcar Sprint Class this year with his father Robert, has been working closely with British Touring Car Championship star Austin for several years and is now relishing his move into TCT.
Beginning his car racing career in the Junior Saloon Car Championship back in 2014, Day became a multiple race winner and podium finisher there before moving into the BTCC-supporting Ginetta Junior Championship.
This year, the teenager got his first taste of touring car machinery at the wheel of ‘Sherman’ in Britcar and with that experience under his belt he will undoubtedly, particularly with the expertise of Austin and HMS Racing in his corner, be one to watch during the inaugural TCT season.
“I’m really excited to be joining such a prestigious team which has such vast experience of the touring car scene”, said Day, “My dream is to one day race in the BTCC, so this is a fantastic opportunity to draw on the experience of HMS and learn all I can from Rob [Austin] and the team.
“TCT also provides me with a perfect stepping stone towards my long-term ambition so I know 2019 is going to be an exciting year, and I will be working as hard as I can to make it a successful year as well! I am very fortunate to already have experience in a British Touring Car, at just 18 years of age, and I am relishing the opportunity to build on that in a more competitive environment.”
Day added: “I am already hard at work putting together packages for potential partners and offering them the chance to benefit from the excellent exposure, and hospitality, which HMS and the TCT series promises.”
HMS delighted to be part of new touring car category
Created by racer and businessman Stewart Lines as an extremely cost-effective route into touring car competition, bridging a gap between existing one-make categories and the BTCC, the TCT series will begin on 13th/14th April at Donington Park in Leicestershire and will be contested over 10 races. The championship will reach its conclusion on 19th/20th October at Snetterton in Norfolk.
HMS Racing team boss Simon Belcher said: “TCT is a great stepping stone to the BTCC, and at a fraction of the cost. It’s fantastic to have Alex onboard in the famous ‘Sherman’ Audi and we look forward to working with him. Alongside the Audi, we’re also looking at the possibility of offering our BTCC race-winning Toyota Avensis, in full current RML specification, if we can find a suitable driver.
“Although we switched to the Alfa Romeo in the BTCC in 2018, our Toyota is one of the newest BTCC cars around having been built new in 2016. It offers a great opportunity for a driver to compete in the latest specification BTCC car, but at a significantly reduced budget in TCT.”
Austin, who became a true fan-favourite in the BTCC through his exploits at the wheel of ‘Sherman’ over the course of five seasons between 2011 and 2015, winning races in 2013 and 2014, says Day is a driver who he believes can achieve great success in TCT next year.
“Simon [Belcher] and I are very excited about this deal”, he commented, “I have worked with Alex since he was competing in Ginetta Junior, he’s a naturally quick driver who continues to learn and impress me. In the new TCT championship, with the support of the HMS team, we have the perfect platform for him to progress.
“As a team we are also looking forward to working with Sherman again. Matt, Brian and I know the car inside out and we’re confident this combination of team, driver and car will be a strong contender for the inaugural TCT crown. We’re also keen to open discussions with potential drivers for our immaculate race-winning Toyota. TCT doesn’t clash with the BTCC by design, so we plan to continue to run cars in the series alongside our Alfa Romeo BTCC project from 2020 onwards.”
On behalf of the Touring Car Trophy, organiser Stewart Lines added: “We are, of course, delighted to welcome HMS Racing to TCT, it’s fantastic news the team is the second BTCC squad in the space of a week to commit to our new series. I’m looking forward to seeing the Audi back out on track and to seeing how Alex progresses next year.”
Drivers interested in joining HMS Racing for the inaugural TCT season next year are invited to contact team owner Simon Belcher at firstname.lastname@example.org or Rob Austin at email@example.com
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