Motorbase Performance have completed their driver line-up for the 2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship by re-signing James Cole to partner Tom Chilton under the Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher banner.
Following the shock departure of Mat Jackson, who had originally been confirmed by the team, Cole returns to the Independent squad following two years with Team BMR in the Subaru Levorg – taking a breakthrough victory at Rockingham last year.
Last driving for the team in 2015, Cole admits he is excited to be returning not only with more experience in the BTCC but also as a race winner now.
It’s fantastic to be back as part of the Motorbase line-up this year;” said Cole. “I’ve never felt happier and more excited going into a new BTCC season. Thanks to David Bartrum for having the faith to welcome me back.”
“I’m coming back into the team as a race winner now, and I have another two years’ of BTCC experience under my belt which should put me in good stead to have a proper crack this year. It’s also great to be back working with James Mundy, my engineer from Formula Ford, it’s been 10 years since we last worked together so it feels like a homecoming!”
Cole joined Chilton and fellow Motorbase stable mate Sam Tordoff in Spain last week, getting to grips with the Ford Focus RS he will be competing in this year.
He continued: “It was like putting back on an old pair of gloves at the test last week. I thought it might take a while to get to grips with FWD again but I managed to get up to speed very quickly.
“The new RS gives me a lot more confidence to push early on and considering I haven’t been in FWD for a couple of years, I managed to get on the pace within a day which shows how much the car has moved on from the old ST.”
The team are set to continue their pre-season test programme later this month at the annual BTCC Season Launch, which takes place at Donington Park on Tuesday 27th March.
PHOTO CREDIT: Jakob Ebrey Photography