Driver Spotlight: Stephen Jelley
Stephen Jelley started his single-seater career in Formula Ford, which pathed the way to a spot in the British Formula 3 Championship. After a strong 2007 season, he finished an impressive third in the standings, aided by two race wins.
After a short stint in the GP2 Asia Series, Jelley made the switch to the British Touring Car Championship in 2008 with Team RAC. Even after he dislocated his shoulder at Silverstone in an on-track accident, he still took the chequered flag inside the top ten and scored a total of seven points finishes overall.
Jelley drove for Team RAC once again for 2009 and carried on the momentum he made in his rookie season. He took sixth in the Drivers’ Championship with two wins at Rockingham, and a further three podiums, to round off another successful campaign.
He then took a break from the BTCC and enriched his CV further within series such as the Porsche Carrera Cup GB, British GT and the Blancpain Endurance Series. However, he made his return to the UK’s premier racing series in 2017 and jumped in the Ford Focus of Team Parker Racing with Maximum Motorsport.
This was the team he stayed with for three consecutive seasons and claimed his first win in ten years with victory in 2019 at Oulton Park. Jelley then made the switch to Team BMW in 2021 – a return to the team he made his debut with in 2008. After scoring two podiums that year he stayed on for both 2022 and 2023.
This past season Jelley proved once again that he is an experienced and safe pair of hand behind his BMW 330e M Sport. He secured 13 top ten finishes over the course of the 2023 season with podiums at both Knockhill and Brands Hatch (GP). This brings a total of 14 podiums and 830 points over his 263 BTCC race career.
After his podium at Brands Hatch (GP) Jelley said: “It’s great to finish the year with a podium after a really fun battle like that. The BMW has been fantastic today. I was a bit disappointed with qualifying but we knew things would come back to us and that’s exactly what’s happened. My engineer Andy Miller is retiring after today, so I did that one for him.”