Photo: NAPA Racing UK

Dan Rowbottom, Sam Osborne join expanded NAPA Racing progamme

NAPA Racing UK will double its presence on the BTCC grid after the Motorbase Performance-run squad revealed a four-car assault on the 2023 campaign.

NAPA backed two Ford Focus STs last year for Ash Sutton and Dan Cammish, both of whom were signed on multi-year contracts that continue into the new season, but will now also take on title sponsorship of the cars raced in 2022 by Ollie Jackson and Sam Osborne under the Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan banner.

Whilst Jackson has already confirmed a move to the Porsche Carrera Cup, Osborne will remain with the team owned by his father Pete for what will be a third season, with Dan Rowbottom completing the driving quartet as he moves over from Team Dynamics.

Motorbase will also continue to run the Focus for at least one more year after being linked over the winter with a move to rear-wheel drive.

“We’re absolutely delighted to announce the four-car line-up with NAPA this year,” Motorbase team manager Oly Collins said, “and I’m really looking forward to seeing all four cars line up on the grid for the first time.

“Since NAPA Racing UK started this journey with us, it has been non-stop excitement and evolution. Together, we have brought a new approach to the championship and shown exactly how to maximise opportunities wherever possible. Every area of the team behind this has pushed boundaries both on and off track, so we’re really looking forward to our second season as NAPA Racing UK.

“To continue the journey with the continuity of Dan and Ash is fantastic. But, to now have the opportunity to further improve our driver line-up with Dan joining us alongside Sam is outstanding.

“At the end of last season, we did look into other options of base car model for the 2023 season, but ultimately with a car and team which won the Teams’ Championship outright last year, we decided to continue for another season with the Focus ST,” team manager Oly Collins said.

“We have a lot of knowledge in the Focus and have invested over the winter to further improve the package in an aim to get the #1 back on one of our cars as soon as possible.”

Rowbottom’s move from Dynamics brings to an end a two-year spell with the Honda team that saw him secure a maiden race win at Oulton Park last season, whilst he also picked up a top ten championship finish for the first time.

“To say I’m excited is an understatement,” he said. “The opportunity for not only myself, but for my long-term title partners Cataclean, is superb.

“I’ve always been a NASCAR fan, so when NAPA joined the BTCC, on a personal level that struck a chord, so to be able to continue the next steps of my career with NAPA Racing UK and Cataclean is an enormous privilege and something that words can’t quantify.

“I have no doubt that we can get on with the job and challenge for race wins in the 2023 season, and cement ourselves as BTCC front runners once more.”