Former BTCC outfit HMS Racing will enter an older-specification NGTC Audi A4 into the new Touring Car Trophy series in 2019, running ex-Ginetta Junior driver Alex Day in the car known as ‘Sherman’.
HMS Racing announced earlier in the month that it had not secured an entry for the 2019 BTCC due to ‘unforseen hurdles’ – meaning that its Alfa Romeo Giulietta would not be on the grid.
But the team will now enter an ex-Rob Austin Racing Audi A4 in Stewart Lines’ new Touring Car Trophy in 2019, with Austin himself mentoring Day in the campaign which will take place over five events.
19-year-old Day has already sampled the machinery in the Britcar series, and he was also a multiple race winner in 2014 in the Junior Saloon Car Championship.
“I’m really excited to be joining such a prestigious team which has such vast experience of the touring car scene”, said Colchester-based 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 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.
“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 Team Principal Simon Belcher added that the team is also looking at running its 2017-spec Toyota Avensis in the new series if a suitable driver can be found.
“TCT is a great stepping stone to the BTCC, and at a fraction of the cost,” said Belcher. “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.”