Nicolas Hamilton will return to the British Touring Car Championship grid in 2019 after signing a deal with Motorbase Performance to race one of its Ford Focus RS cars.
The brother of five-time F1 champion Lewis, Hamilton first made his BTCC début in 2015 when he raced an AmD Tuning-run Audi S3 for 12 of the 30 races.
Hamilton, 26, will be supported by ROKiT in one of Motorbase’s three Fords which has been specially modified to suit his needs, as Hamilton lives with Cerebral Palsy.
“I cannot actually believe that I will be back on the BTCC grid this year,” said Hamilton, who has since competed in the Renault UK Clio Cup in 2017 and 2018. “I have been in and out of different series since I started racing due to a lack of funding and general support.
“A lot of people assume that due to my name, I will have all of the funding in the world, but this could not be any further from the truth. I have been on my own for the past six years, grinding away, trying to get a full season under my belt with all of the support I need.
“I have not had a continuous career in motorsport that allows me to work on my foundation. I have just been testing at the races, doing a decent job due to my funding level and experience, but getting judged on who I am related to.
“I am very proud that I finally get this chance to have a full crack at motorsport and to be doing it in the BTCC, driving for a competitive outfit such as Motorbase Performance, is unbelievable.
“It gives me great pride in knowing that, when I sit in my car this year, I did it all off my own back and I can’t wait to get started.
“I am still very inexperienced and am just going to take it all in my stride, do as best as I can, drive like I know I can, develop my craft and see where that takes me.
“I have a new ‘Title Partner’ this year, ROKiT, an exciting new telco brand challenging the status quo. They offer premium smartphones technology, performance and design at an affordable price, as well as installing innovative Wi-Fi networks to make the world a better place. I am absolutely honoured to be representing them in 2019
“As well as having ROKiT on-board, each specific relationship I have with my additional partners is very personal to me. Each brand/company has their own story behind their support for me and I am truly grateful. Monster Energy, BigChange, DUO PLC, PalmerSport, PUMA Motorsport, Arai Helmets and NGK Spark Plugs. Without their collective support, an opportunity like this would be impossible.”
Hamilton’s car will be shaken down in February before he embarks on pre-season testing with Motorbase in Spain.
Motorbase Team Principal David Bartrum is looking forward to working with Hamiltin in 2019, alongside Tom Chilton and Ollie Jackson.
“I’m looking forward to Nic joining us in the BTCC,” added Bartrum. “He brings a different type of journey for us to go on with him. He also brings with him a steely determination, a willingness to learn and a craving to succeed.
“From what I’ve of Nic so far, his approach is very professional, and I would defy anyone to spend five minutes in his company not to be inspired by him.
“We have a very good pre-season test schedule to give him time to acquaint himself with the team and his new car to give him the best chance possible.”