Team Aon has announced that Alan Morrison is to make a return to the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship this season as team-mate to Tom Chilton in the second of its Ford Focus STs
Morrison last raced in the BTCC back in 2003 as part of the factory Honda team, then run by the same Arena Motorsport team that will run this Focus this year.
Having yet to sample the Focus, the Northern Irishman admits that the opening rounds of the season this weekend at Brands Hatch will be something of a test session as he gets back behind the wheel of a touring car, but he said he was excited to be making a return.
“My deal has come together very late, but I'm really looking forward to racing with Mike and the team again,” he said. “This weekend at Brands will be quite an adventure. I've not driven anything for five years and haven't had a chance to try the Focus yet so this first event is really going to be a test session for me. I know the team will do a fantastic job and make the challenge enjoyable.”
Team boss Mike Earle said he was delighted to have the chance to work with Morrison again and admitted that the opening races of the new campaign would see the team continuing to work on the development of the all-new Focus to bring it up to speed.
“It has taken Alan a while to get his deal sorted and that's not surprising in these hard economic times, but I'm delighted he's done it and very happy to have him back,” he said. “He hasn't had any preparation and it will be tough for him to start with, but he will get there.
“The development of the cars has not been without problems, but that is to be expected. We have to bring together many brand new elements such as engines and their control systems, chassis and suspension components, all without any assistance from the manufacturer – Ford. In the time frame we have had it has been a real challenge and every time the car runs we have a multitude of information to digest and respond to. That process will still be going on through the first few races of the season.
"The target is to have developed the cars to a level where we can be competitive with the established teams in the first half of the season. With what we have learned in the recent test days, that target is achievable.”