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Tony Gilham confirms late BTCC return

Team HARD owner Tony Gilham will return to competitive British Touring Car Championship action at Silverstone this weekend for his squad, replacing Kieran Gallagher.

Faced with an extensive repair bill after Rockingham, where Gallagher was involved in two race-ending incidents in his Toyota Avensis, Gilham has been drafted in due to the financial implications of the previous weekend.

Gilham’s participation will be his first in a competitive BTCC weekend since the season-ending event at Brands Hatch in 2012.

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“It hasn’t necessarily happened in the way I wanted it to, but I’m delighted to be back,” said the 36 year-old. “The team has completed a huge workload to repair and rebuild the car over the last few weeks, which also required additional budget.

“It wasn’t part of the plan of course but that’s the way it goes sometimes and thanks to our loyal sponsors and supporters I am pleased to be able to grab this opportunity.”

Gilham, who scored a podium in the 2012 season, tested his team’s Avensis during July’s Snetterton tyre test and believed he was ready for the weekend despite his previous hiatus.

“I would have liked to have had more testing, but at least I had some time in the car at Snetterton. I have been keeping fit and sharp as I always hoped I would again get the chance to race in the BTCC, although I’m under no illusions as to how tough it will be.

“The car looks fantastic and it’s in tip-top condition, so I can’t wait to get out there this weekend.”

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