Cartridge World Carbon Zero Racing team boss Colin Neill insists that his team has secured a driver of 'the highest calibre' in Adam Jones as it continues preparations for its first season in the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship.
The team revealed late last month that Jones would come in alongside Dan Eaves for the 2009 campaign, with the pair running in bio-ethanol fuelled SEAT Leons – all tied into the team's plan to be the first carbon neutral outfit in the series.
Jones will bring with him a year of experience with the SEAT having contested the 2008 campaign in a petrol-powered Leon run by GR Asia under the Team Aircool banner, and Neill admitted that that experience had played an important part in securing the drive.
“We had options when it came to drivers, but when the chance came up to speak to Adam, we had to move quickly,” he told Crash.net
. “His credentials speak volumes for what he can do. A lot of people aren't aware of the success he had when he was racing in France earlier in his career and he has carried that into touring cars.
“That success, and the fact he has a year of experience in the car, meant he was the person to go for and we signed a driver of the highest calibre to help us get towards the sharp end of the grid. It will be the first time Adam has had a team-mate for a season which will help him, and it will also help Dan as he makes his return. He needs to dust the cobwebs off a little bit but that won't take long as he is a classy driver as he has shown in the past. I think we have two of the best independent drivers we could have asked for.”
Work continues on preparing for the team's debut season, and Neill revealed that the first test sessions are due to take place in the weeks leading up to Media Day at Rockingham, where the team aims to be fully up to speed when it goes up against its rivals on track.
“We hope to be out testing for the first time a couple of weeks before Media Day, just so that we can do a shakedown and check the engine mapping on the ethanol fuel,” he said. “That mapping is all done, we are just waiting on some things from our technical partners which we should have by early next week. We want to do a couple of tests to get up to speed and then we'll have Media Day, the official test at Brands Hatch and then it'll be time for the start of the season. We can't wait for it.”