There is little doubt that the Ginetta Junior Championship has proved to be a welcome addition to the British Touring Car Championship paddock in recent years - with the grid of teenage racers having produced some impressive racing over the past two years.

Joining the TOCA package on a one-year trial at the start of 2008 following the demise of the Formula BMW UK Championship, the Juniors gave a sign of things to come in the opening race at Brands Hatch when Dino Zamparelli took victory after beating Dominic Pettit to the line by just 0.025secs.

Having extended its deal with BTCC boss Alan Gow to remain part of the support bill, the Juniors again grabbed plenty of attention during 2009 as Sarah Moore became the first female driver to win a title on the TOCA package.

While Sarah returns to defend her title this season, she'll have to do so at the wheel of a new car - with the 'old' Junior car being pensioned off and replaced by the impressive G40.

Given its public debut at the Autosport International show back in January, the G40 weighs in at just 745kg with power coming a restricted Ford Zetec 1800cc engine - the aim being to teach car control and racecraft to a field of drivers aged between 14 and 17 years old.

And it was during the annual Ginetta Media Day at Silverstone recently - where those Juniors were putting the G40 through its paces - that had the chance to go out for a spin...

Usually such events see the press consigned to the passenger seat, but this time around we were offered the opportunity to get behind the wheel - albeit with a warning from Ginetta chief Lawrence Tomlinson to keep repair bills to a minimum.

Shame no-one mentioned that to Radio 1 man Comedy Dave who went and shunted one...

When the time came to get behind the wheel, the first impression was that things were tight when you clamber in. Then again, I'm certainly not the same size as your typical 14-year-old!

With Clio Cup racer Phil House sitting alongside, the car grumbled off down pitlane ready to take to the circuit, with clear instructions being provided on the various signals that would be used while on track - the noise of the engine making it difficult for there to be much in the way of conversation.

Exiting the pitlane, the initial acceleration of the car was impressive as we headed up towards Maggotts. A hard push on the brakes - no ABS here - as we swept left before hitting the apex through the right-hander at Becketts and it was on to the National Straight.

Given the chance to put the power down - after finding fifth gear - it wasn't long before the left hander at Brooklands appeared. Stamping on the brakes approaching the turn, the car felt nicely balanced as we clipped the apex on the inside and headed into Luffield. Once round the right hander, it was a case of feeding on the power as we headed onto the start/finish straight and barrelled down to Copse.

F1 drivers enjoy the right-hander for the speed they can carry, and after dabbing the brakes before turning it, it was then a case of allowing the car to run out towards the kerbs to keep as much speed as possible before heading back towards Maggotts for a second lap.

These cars don't race on proper racing tyres, but there was no shortage of grip and despite the fact that the person behind the wheel was far from being a racing driver, it was clear to see that Ginetta has again hit the mark with its latest creation.

The only issue we found wasn't down to the car, but more to the footwear being used - large trainers hitting the brake and accelerator at the same time when you're coming to the end of the National Straight was slight cause for concern!

There was only time for a couple of laps of the circuit, but its clear to see from that little taster that the G40 is a cracking piece of kit and if the racing is half as good as the fare served up by it predecessor then the Juniors will again be one to watch this year.

Costing just under ?25,000, the initial batch of cars has sold quickly, and the fact that teams like BTCC winners Eurotech and Le Mans outfit Rollcentre will be represented on the grid is an indication of how the series is viewed within the industry...

As well as giving racing rookies the chance to sample the G40, Ginetta's Media Day also saw the launch of the new F400 following the acquisition of Farbio Sportscars and the opportunity to go for a spin in something altogether different to a low-slung sportscar.

Overfinch are the company to deal with should you want to make improvements to your Range Rover - and Overfinch Leeds has a number of its models on display.

Amongst those models was a Range Rover Sport complete with Overfinch body kit - which comes in at just over ?60,000. A run down to Silverstone Village showed that this is an impressive beast - but nothing compared to the top of the range model on show back at the circuit.

The 'Holland & Holland' model won't leave much change from ?150k but for this money, you end up with supercharged machine that will do 0-60 a hell of a lot quicker than its size would suggest, carpets thicker than most people would have in their living room, loads of wood and a bar and gun case in the boot - a link to the famous gunsmith that has lent the model its name.

Oh to have the money to trundle to the race track in an Overfinch before a weekend racing the Ginetta...