James Thompson to return with Motorbase at SilverstonePosted: October 13, 2011
Double British Touring Car champion James Thompson is to make a one-off return appearance to the series this weekend for the final 2011 round at Silverstone with Motorbase Airwaves Ford.
The 2002 and 2004 champion will be drafted into David Bartrum’s Motorbase Ford team in place of Michael Caine in the third Focus ST in a bid to aid Mat Jackson’s slim but still alive championship chances, but mostly Jackson’s Independent’s championship chances.
Thompson has been one of the BTCC’s top household names, as well as a championship contender and race winner in the World Touring Car Championship since 2005.
Aside from two memorable championships with Vauxhall and Triple Eight, he has won a total of 36 BTCC races in his career since 1995, although since his 2004 success has only made selected appearances for SEAT and Honda in 2006 and 2009 – picking up yet more race wins in both those seasons.
He has since dodged through multiple Touring Car disciplines that has seen him race and win for Alfa Romeo, SEAT and Honda in the WTCC, as well as making guest appearances for Lada, racing in Denmark and Sweden, and also winning the European Touring Car Cup in 2009 and 2010.
Thompson completed his first test with the Airwaves Ford team yesterday at Brands Hatch, and seemed reasonably happy with the car.
He told AUTOSPORT: “I’m genuinely excited to be coming back to compete in the finale of the championship,” said Thompson. “I’m here to lend support to Mat and the team in their quest for the title and try not to cause too much mischief out on the track.
“Although it’s never easy to step straight into a new car, it’s still got four wheels and a steering wheel like the rest of them so I should hope that all my years racing will deliver a great result for the team at Silverstone.”
Thompson’s aim will be to work with Jackson this weekend, the latter heading to Silverstone 36 points behind overall championship leader Matt Neal and – more crucially – just 17 points behind Independents’ points leader James Nash.