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2017 BTCC grid begins to take shape

Thursday, January 12 2017

A raft of Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship team and driver announcements have been made this week, coinciding with the annual Autosport International Show at Birmingham's NEC. The championship will get underway at Brands Hatch on 1/2 April.

Martin Depper has switched from Eurotech to join former British GT racer Luke Davenport at Motorbase, where the pair will line up alongside Mat Jackson in the Shredded Wheat-liveried Ford Focus.

Team boss David Bartrum said: "After securing our first-ever BTCC titles in 2016, we have one clear aim for 2017 and that's the overall title. It's fantastic to have Mat back for his eighth season and his return is key to us mounting a successful championship challenge this year.

"We now have a formidable trio with Martin and Luke joining him and have three drivers who we would very much like to continue with beyond the 2017 season."

Reigning Renault UK Clio Cup Champion Ant Whorton-Eales will drive the second AmDTuning.com Audi S3 alongside team-mate Ollie Jackson this season. The 22-year-old beat Mike Bushell, who previously raced for AmD in the BTCC, to last year's title in the final round at Brands Hatch.

"It's no secret that I wanted to move into the BTCC this season and we've spent a lot of time looking at the various options that were available," Whorton-Eales said. "Once we spoke to [AmD boss] Shaun [Hollamby] about his plans with the second Audi, the deal was a very easy one to do and it was all wrapped up within a day.

"As a rookie driver, the main target has to be the Jack Sears Trophy and it would be nice if we could be pushing towards the top ten in the championship by the end of the year."

Elsewhere, Rob Austin will remain with Handy Motorsport for 2017, whilst Tom Ingram has been confirmed at Speedworks. The two teams, which run the Toyota Avensis model, will now run as entirely separate entities, having previously worked together in the past.

Meanwhile new liveries have been unveiled for the title-defending works Hondas of Matt Neal and Gordon Shedden, whilst Andrew Jordan's WSR BMW has been revealed in its full Pirtek colours.

Honda  Pirtek

MSV has a high-profile stand at this week's Autosport International, which is open to the public on Saturday and Sunday (14/15 January) and our stand, 2670 in Hall 20 has several great offers for visitors. Click here for more information.

Tickets for all MSV rounds of the 2017 BTCC season are now on sale - for more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.