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IP Tech Race Engineering further postpones 2013 entry

IP Tech Race Engineering have again postponed their entry into the British Touring Car Championship, with team owner Andy Neate citing an eleventh hour technical problem as the reason.

The news comes just a day after the new team revealed their complete 2013 livery and new sponsor Marshall Amps.

Neate, 38, will be taking to the grid this season at the wheel of a brand new NGTC-specification Chevrolet Cruze. The former WSR, Arena and Triple Eight driver originally planned to make his first appearance at Donington Park, before postponing to Oulton Park. The team have been testing the car today (Friday) and taken the decision to once again postpone their debut until Croft later in June.

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“A final technical problem was thrown onto the mix to try us at the eleventh hour,” explained Neate. “With the assistance of some fantastic people, we managed to fix the issue. However, it has all happened a bit too late to allow us to partake in the bare minimum amount of testing we had scheduled. Effectively we would have had to shakedown and test on the day preceding free practice on Saturday at Oulton Park.

“The car is now finished and is ready to receive the modified components. However I have always maintained I will not test at a race weekend. I am sticking to my guns and this will not change.

“With this said, and the false dawns to date, we are keen for all our followers and fans to see one of the most anticipated new NGTC race cars of the year. As a result, the finished IP Tech Race Engineering Cruze will be on display for all to see this weekend at Oulton Park with the kind blessing of TOCA.”

Neate has become a mainstay of the BTCC in recent seasons, racking up a tally of 92 race starts in the series. During his tenure to-date Neate has scored a best result of sixth on two occasions, one of which came at Oulton Park in 2011.

Neate will also be supporting NHS Blood Donations throughout the season and will be carrying the ‘Give Blood’ logo on the bumpers of his Cruze and on the arm of his race suit – in the same spot where a donor’s blood is drawn from.

“The idea of giving blood is one of those things that only occurs to many of us when we see the benefits close to home,” said Neate. “It’s either someone involved in some sort of accident like I was or when someone’s having treatment for cancer for example – for us it’s about giving people a gentle nudge to think about it and hopefully turn up to a session. It costs you nothing but a bit of your time and I know that for our guys, it makes them feel like they’re doing something useful and that’s got to be a good thing.”

NHS Blood and Transplant spokesperson Theo Clarke praised Neate for his support.

“We are very grateful to Andy and the team for promoting blood donation in this way and we hope plenty of BTCC fans will be inspired to give blood as a result,” he said. “Andy’s story highlights how blood often saves lives after accidents and injuries but it is also used as in a wide variety of regular treatments for illnesses such as cancers and blood disorders.”

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