Tony Gilham’s Team HARD outfit has bought both of Thorney Motorsport’s Vauxhall Insignia VXR-Rs for the 2013 British Touring Car Championship season, and becomes the latest team to make the switch from Super 2000 to Next Generation Touring Car machinery.
The Kent-based team has purchased Thorney’s current racing car as well as the unfinished second car which Thorney had to abandon plans to race early in the season.
Team HARD Team Principal and driver Tony Gilham has already raced the car at Snetterton, taking the team’s first points, and as a last minute stand-in at Silverstone.
“It’s always been our plan to build cars for other teams in the BTCC and this first deal is part of that plan,” said Thorney Motorsport Team Principal John Thorne. “Tony has had some seat time in the car and loves it, so much so that he bought them both so that’s encouraging for us and demonstrates that we have built a potentially competitive car.”
Team HARD will take over the running of the car for Gilham this weekend at Brands Hatch, whilst Aaron Williamson drives Team HARD’s S2000-spec Honda Civic for the season finale.
Thorne’s plans also include a return to racing in the 2013 season, with Thorne stating the team has secured a title sponsorship deal for next year and plans to build another pair of Insignias to compete with. Thorney is also negotiating with other teams on the grid about supplying cars for the 2013 BTCC season.
“Securing top level partners for next season will allow us to actually race rather than just build race cars so I’m delighted,” added Thorne. “The BTCC is not the place to be with no budget, this year certainly taught us that.”