Team sunshine.co.uk has announced that it will field a two-car team in the 2009 HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship.
The team, run by leading Independent outfit Tech-Speed Motorsport Ltd, will field the ex-John Guest Racing Honda Integras for Martyn Bell and Paul O'Neill – the latter making a full-time return to the BTCC after a lengthy absence from the grid.
The decision to run the Integra came after lengthy discussions during the off-season, with the former title-winning car being deemed to be the best package available for the 2009 campaign.
"We are pleased to announce that a deal has been done with Mike Jordan to purchase the cars and parts he had up for sale," Bell explained. "We looked at going down the Super 2000 route but it was simply too expensive for us and we have been able to do a good deal with Mike to purchase the Integras and a hell of a lot of spares as well.
"Some people might not view it as a step forward to be staying with a BTC-spec car, but we feel it gives us the chance to make progress in 2009 as the car is still a competitive machine and capable of some strong results."
The decision to bring in O'Neill to fill the second seat will give the team one of the more popular driver line-ups on the grid, and Chris Brown. MD of title sponsors sunshine.co.uk, said he was hopeful that a strong season would lie ahead for the pair.
"We are looking forward to increasing awareness of the sunshine.co.uk brand in what is a high profile and hugely exciting championship," he said. "We hope that Martyn can build on the experience he collected last season in his first year with front-wheel drive and are delighted that we have a proven BTCC winner in Paul coming in to join him in the Integras."