Liam McMillan has revealed that he will benefit from the experience of GR Asia team boss Paul Ridgway during his debut season in the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship.
Ridgway, who has run cars for Adam Jones for the past two years and also helped Tom Coronel to secure the WTCC Independents' title, will take on the role of race engineer on McMillan's Maxtreme-run SEAT Toledo while former VX Racing team member Paul Colman – who worked on Matt Neal's Vectra last season – will take on the role of number one mechanic.
McMillan will debut a new car this week at the Rockingham media day when he hits the track in an ex-Jason Plato car, which has been updated to the latest spec available.
While the teenager has completed four tests so far, those tests have all taken place in chassis 008, as raced by James Pickford. At the media day however, McMillan will be at the wheel of chassis 011, the car which Plato used to win on SEAT's debut in the series back in 2004.
The car has been fitted with a new 16v engine as opposed to the 20v motor used when the car was run by the works SEAT team, while the Toledo has also been fitted with the latest aerodynamic package which hasn't been seen in the BTCC before.
“Pre-season testing has gone well,” McMillan reflected. “We achieved our main aim of getting as many miles under my belt as we could, including a number of race distance runs. It was too cold to work too much on lap times and with the base weights changing for 2009, we didn't really have any accurate data to compare ourselves with anyway.
“It hasn't taken me long to become comfortable in the Toledo and I already feel right at home in it. It's a nice car to drive and it reacts well to any changes you make to the set-up, so we've been able to do a lot of work during our four winter test days and changed the car to my liking.
“I'm looking forward to testing at Rockingham, because it will be the first time I've been on the same track with the BTCC field and the first opportunity to compare laps times. I'm also pleased that the opening rounds of the series take place at Brands Hatch, because we've done more winter testing there than anywhere else, so I know the Kent circuit well and I know how the Toledo handles there.”