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Just one car for Handy Motorsport in 2016 BTCC

Handy Motorsport have put their expansion ambitions on hold until 2017, with Team Principal Simon Belcher confirming that they will run just one car for Rob Austin in the 2016 British Touring Car Championship.

Handy had earlier revealed ambitions to expand to a two-car squad, having leased an additional TOCA BTCC Licence (TBL) from Rob Austin Racing, in addition to their own licence.

Now Belcher has confirmed that the team will not run two cars in the forthcoming season, instead opting to put its full focus on delivering race wins for Austin.

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“After a lot of thought, and many discussions, we have decided to run just one car in the BTCC again this year to concentrate all of our efforts on Rob and on pushing for podiums and, hopefully, race wins”, said Belcher.

“We need to focus on our ‘A game’ to become front-runners, that’s the reason we signed Rob. It would have been great to get a second car on the grid, but we still have a lot going on behind the scenes which will hopefully mean we’ll expand as planned in 2017 after proving ourselves as front-runners this season.

“Having two cars this year and just making up the numbers isn’t for us. We are here to try and win so one car makes sense, especially as we share data with the Speedworks [Motorsport] car Tom Ingram will be driving. Two cars aren’t a necessity unless the numbers add up.”

The Swindon-based team had, until recent weeks, been progressing with plans to run a two-car team, but have had to put the plans on hold due to talks with drivers failing to result in a satisfactory deal.

Those delays meant that the team would have been unable to have enough time to be able to field a second brand new Avensis for the season opener.

The team will carry out testing of its new car in Portimão, Portugal next week as part of a three-day programme. The team then plan to continue testing throughout March in the run-up to the BTCC Media Day at Donington Park.

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