Well last week showed that testing is well underway for the 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship however there have also been a few announcements to give a clearer picture of the runners and riders this season.
So, whats been happening...
1. Yuasa Honda took the newly built No.2 Honda Civic Tourer for Gordon Shedden for Testing at Snetterton. Shedden has spent time in the No.1 car previously testing it back to back with the 2013 Civic Hatchback, however this allowed him time in his own car.
2. United Autosports drivers Glynn Geddie and James Cole also at Snetterton testing the teams two Toyota Avensis NGTC cars.
3. Adam Morgan revealed the livery of his WIX Racing Mercedes A-Class, taking the oppurtunity to show how the car livery took shape via an online Social Media presentation.
4. Snetterton became a popular place as Pirtek Honda drivers Andrew Jordan and Martin Depper arrived to test their NGTC Honda Civics, giving Depper more time in an NGTC car.
5. Airwaves Racing also tested their 2014 Ford Focus at Snetterton with Fabrizio Giovanardi at the wheel and Jack Clarke spotted in attendence, building speculation that Clarke will be racing for the team.
6. United Autosports stayed on for a 2nd day of testing with both Geddie and Cole getting further NGTC mileage under their belts.
7. Returning BTCC Team BTC Racing unveiled the livery of their NGTC Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback. The car will be black with main sponsor Power Maxed dominating the livery. Chris Stockton will pilot the car during the season.
7. Brands Hatch was a hive of activity on Thursday as several BTCC teams took the oppurtunity to test in drying conditions. Rob Austin was out in his RAR/Exocet Racing Audi A4 Sherman whilst Dave Newsham got his first run in the AmD NGTC Ford Focus this year. Team Dynamics were also out in force testing their Civic Tourers with Flash and Neal getting more seat time. Meanwhile Ebay/WSR BMW were testing at Snetterton, getting more data with their more aero designed 1 Series for the season ahead.
8. Friday saw wet testing taking place at Silverstone for several teams. United Autosports were testing both NGTC cars with regular drivers Glynn Geddie and James Cole getting more wet testing mileage. WIX Racing are also out at Silverstone, testing their new NGTC Mercedes A Class for the first time with Adam Morgan at the wheel.
9. Finally 2013 Jack Sears Champion Lea Wood announced that he will compete in the 2014 season driving for newly formed team Houseman Racing using an NGTC Toyota Avensis. The team is the same family run outfit JWT Performance that ran Wood in 2013 with title sponsorship from 2013 sponsor Houseman Dry Lining. Wood has explained that as the Toyota is a developed car already, he and the team are hoping to score good points during the first half of the season.
So with Lea Wood announcing his return, another seat and team are confirmed. From my point of view, assuming that Speedworks may only run one car, this leaves three seats left to be filled and with 15 days left to the BTCC Media Day on 18th March, its highly likely these other seats will be confirmed then.
What is clear that the 2nd seat at Airwaves Racing is a straight fight between 2013 Airwaves drivers Mat Jackson and Tom Onslow-Cole with Jack Clarke an almost cert for the third seat.
However as the buildup to Media Day continues with the season start on 30th March 2 weeks later, its looking to be an amazing season this year.
All the best,