Defending champions West Surrey Racing have revealed the surprise signing of Rob Collard for the 2010 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season.
Collard was widely tipped to return to Motorbase Performance for a third season, having carried the team to its maiden victories last year en-route to sixth in the championship standings.
However, Collard will now return to the team that carried him to his first overall BTCC wins – at Knockhill and Brands Hatch - during the 2005 campaign where he will line-up alongside Andy Neate.
"This was too good an opportunity to turn down, as I could see the WSR BMWs on track last year and at times they were just awesome," Collard said. "It was a very difficult decision for me to make a late switch from Motorbase. However, I had to look at what's best for my career, so to now be driving in a Championship winning team is a real bonus for me."
Team boss Dick Bennetts, who is continuing to work on a deal to run a third for defending champion Colin Turkington, said he was delighted to welcome Collard back into the team.
"We've been in dialogue with Rob for some time and between us we've come up with a package of sponsorship, details of which will be announced shortly," he said. "It will be great to have Rob back with us in a BMW, as he already has two years experience in the 320si.
"We are really looking forward to seeing how he performs with our set-ups on the car."