Broadstairs racing driver Michael Crees makes his British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) debut this weekend at Brands Hatch.
The 35-year-old will be realising a lifelong dream as he lines up on the Kwik Fit sponsored British Touring Car Championship grid after signing a deal at the end of last year with leading squad Team HARD for his debut campaign in the biggest race series in the UK.
Less than three years since the Kent racer was standing on the banks as a fan watching the BTCC in action, Crees is now seizing the chance to take on some of the best touring car drivers and teams in the world in only his third season of motorsport competition.
With the support of his loyal sponsors, Crees will race one of Team HARD’s Volkswagen CC’s, an established race-winning car in the series that he tested for the first time earlier last year at Snetterton in Norfolk.
The move continues Crees’ meteoric rise up the motorsport ladder, having won the Ginetta Racing Drivers’ Club title in his maiden car-racing campaign in 2017, before announcing himself to the BTCC paddock with a sensational display in the Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup.
The Thanet driver dominated the AM Class with a remarkable record of 11 race victories and eight other podium finishes across the 23 race campaign last year.
Michael said: “My dream has become a reality! It has been a very difficult decision with what to do as I have so little experience in racing, but after winning two titles in two years of racing, we wanted to challenge ourselves in the hardest series in the UK.
“I want to thank Tony Gilham for taking a chance on us. I can’t wait to start a long, tough journey to becoming a successful BTCC driver.”
Crees is Team HARD’s fourth and final signing for the 2019 BTCC season, partnering with two-time Renault UK Clio Cup champion and BTCC top six finisher Mike Bushell, 2017 Volkswagen Racing Cup champion Bobby Thompson and fellow Ginetta GT4 Supercup graduate Carl Boardley.
Tony Gilham – Team HARD Boss: “Michael is very much like us in the way he approaches his racing with his family support around him and his mindset to do the best job possible on track but to enjoy it off track too.
“He is a very special talent and has had a meteoric rise to the top and we cannot wait to share the next chapter of our stories together.”
The highest profile motor-racing series in the UK, the BTCC attracts trackside crowds of on average over 37,000 per meeting across the country, has live terrestrial television coverage of every race on ITV4, and extensive media coverage and a large social media presence.
The 2019 BTCC Championship gets underway on April 7 at Brands Hatch. Follow the action on ITV and online at www.BTCC.net
Report via Michael Crees Motorsport