Team RAC has revealed that it has re-signed Stephen Jelley for the 2009 HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship season, which will see him line-up once again alongside Colin Turkington.
Team boss Dick Bennetts revealed to Crash.net
back on Finals Day at Brands Hatch in September that a deal was already in place with Turkington to continue his relationship with the squad into 2009 – where he will look to secure the Independents' title for the third straight year.
There was more doubt however over the future of Jelley, who made his debut in tin-tops after a number of years in the British F3 International Series.
Despite a challenging debut season that saw him finish down in 15th place in the standings, performances towards the end of the year showed that the 26-year-old was getting to grips with the different driving style needed to race in the BTCC, with the highlight coming at Brands Hatch where he took pole position for the final rounds of the year.
Now, with a year of experience under his belt, Jelley will hope to impress in his second year in the series and said he was fully motivated for the year ahead.
"It's great to be driving for Team RAC once again this coming season,” he said. “There has been a lot of hard work going into the cars over the winter and I am sure we will be very competitive and hit the ground running.
“I am totally focused on the first round at Brands Hatch in April. I have been looking after myself more by going to the gym and undertaking a rigorous fitness regime. I have set myself goals of where I want to be both physically and mentally before the start of the season.”
Team boss Bennetts was also pleased to confirm an unchanged line-up for the season ahead.
"I am delighted that Stephen has agreed to re-sign for Team RAC,” he said. “Stephen had a steep learning curve adjusting to the hurly-burly of touring cars at the start of the 2008 season, but this was overcome as the year went on.
“The pole position secured in the final round at Brands Hatch was no mean feat and a tribute to his driving abilities. He is a promising driver, a quick learner, and someone who complements Colin Turkington perfectly.”