BTCC PRE-SEASON RECAP: MARCH
Between the final driver announcements, livery unveils and pre-season testing, March has delivered the perfect BTCC fix as the light at the end of the ‘off season tunnel’ – namely April’s Season Launch followed by the opening rounds, at Thruxton – continues to get closer.
With the barrage of news, this month’s pre-season recap is sure to come in handy, as the final pieces of the 2021 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship are falling into place…
Speedworks Motorsport’s first-look and full reveal
Kicking off the month with a glimpse of what to expect from the squad’s pair of Toyota Corollas, Speedworks Motorsport went on to reveal the full liveries of both machines. The reveal was followed by drivers Rory Butcher and Sam Smelt hitting the track in the newly liveried cars, beginning their pre-season test programme at Snetterton.
Team Dynamics confirms driver line-up
It was a trio of announcements from Team Dynamics in March, as it was revealed that Dan Cammish would not be racing with the squad in 2021, before the news that series returnees Gordon Shedden and Dan Rowbottom would be fronting the team’s upcoming BTCC attack.
TTT makes its 2021 return
Much to the delight of BTCC fans, Autoglym Tin Top Tuesday returned to our ears in March, with host Alan Hyde broadcasting the long-awaited Christmas Tinsel Top Tuesday episode on 9 March. The episode is available on-demand via the BTCC’s numerous audio platforms.
Lloyd completes bill for PMR
Having confirmed BTCC stalwart Jason Plato would be driving one of the team’s Vauxhall Astras in January, Power Maxed Car Care Racing announced Dan Lloyd would be making his series return with the squad.
TOCA confirms calendar revision
Following the Government issuing its roadmap for the easing of restrictions, TOCA announced revisions to the previously issued BTCC calendar for 2021. The amended schedule sees the Snetterton event now taking place on 12/13 June, and Brands Hatch Indy two weeks later, on 26/27 June.
Team HARD. reveals the CUPRA Leon
Kent-based Team HARD. Racing, which announced the switch from a trio of Volkswagen CCs to a quartet of CUPRA Leons for 2021 in September, revealed the machine in all its glory live and exclusively on Kwik Fit’s social media channels in March. The reveal included drivers Jack Goff and Aron Taylor-Smith giving their immediate reactions to the car, before the squad hit the track at Brands Hatch later in the month.
Team BMW’s 2021 livery unveil
Team BMW, which confirmed its full driver line-up in February, launched its three newly liveried BMW 330i M Sports in March, with the striking matte black machines sporting the iconic BMW M stripes for 2021.
Hamilton takes the final BTCC seat
With only four seats to be confirmed heading into March, it seemed inevitable that the full grid would be clear by the month’s conclusion. With 50 days until the season’s opening event, Team HARD. announced Nic Hamilton would be completing the squad’s line-up, taking the 29th and final BTCC seat for 2021.
BTCC launches ‘Ask Alan’ feature
Renowned for its endeavours to increase accessibility and fan engagement, the BTCC boosted this further in March, announcing a platform for fans to send their questions directly to Chief Executive Alan Gow. These questions and answers will then be published on a monthly basis on btcc.net.
As well as all the news throughout March, numerous BTCC teams have hit the tarmac for pre-season testing. So far, we’ve seen over half the grid on track at a number of venues up and down the UK, and have been ensuring fans can keep an eye on how their favourite drivers and teams are shaping up for the 2021 campaign with updates on our social media and a pre-season testing gallery available here.
April marks the first month of Official BTCC action, as the teams gear up for the 2021 Season Launch in just three weeks’ time. The event, which takes place little over a fortnight before the campaign’s opening race weekend, is set to take place on Silverstone’s National configuration, comprising the championship’s Official Pre-Season test, with TSL’s live timing available during the sessions on 22 April here.