Robb Holland will make his return to the British Touring Car Championship at Snetterton, in the first of three appearances for Handy Motorsport as he deputises for Simon Belcher.
The American completed a full campaign last season and scored two points for his Rotek Racing squad, having also competed at select events in 2012 and 2013 for Team HARD.
Holland was then left without a drive for 2015 after selling his Audi S3 – now piloted by Nicolas Hamilton – to AmD Tuning during the off-season, although he remained confident of competing at some point during the current campaign.
And having secured a deal to race at Snetterton, Knockhill and Rockingham for the team, Holland was raring to go ahead of his return to the championship.
“I am, of course, very excited to be back in the championship,” said the 47 year-old. “I’ve been working hard to put something together since I found out Rotek Racing wouldn’t be returning. I want to thank Simon Belcher, his existing sponsors and my long-time partner Oakley Motorsports for helping to make this happen.
“It will be tough jumping back into the championship halfway through the season, but the Avensis looks to be a really good car and the team is strong as well. I am sure they’ll help me get up to speed quickly and we can make some good progress.”
Holland’s drive with the team is a temporary one after driver and Team Principal Belcher admitted he would need take a break from the championship due to budgetary issues, partly due to an extensive repair bill following a shunt with Mike Bushell at Thruxton.
And despite the disappointment of having to forfeit his seat, the former Clio Cup racer believed Holland was an ideal replacement as his team looks to continue its progress in 2015.
“We’re obviously delighted to welcome Robb into the team,” said Belcher. “He’s exactly the sort of driver we wanted and everyone at the team is looking forward to working with him for the first time.
“We wanted someone with BTCC experience and a desire to try and help the team move forward, and Robb fits the bill perfectly. We can’t wait to see how he gets on at Snetterton.”
Holland will make his competitive debut at Snetterton in three weeks’ time, but will have his first taste of the car on Thursday during the series’ official tyre test at the Norfolk circuit.