2010 Ginetta G50 Champion Frank Wrathall will race a new Next Generation Touring Car-spec Toyota Avensis in 2011's Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, it has been announced.
Wrathall has confirmed his Dynojet team will move into the BTCC and has already put down a deposit on a car to be built by GPR Motorsport.
It comes after the highly-impressive public debut of the BTCC's NGTC prototype car – built around an Avensis by GPR – at Brands Hatch's final round last month.
Wrathall won this year's hotly-contested Ginetta G50 sportscar series that races as a support category in front of the BTCC's 30,000-plus trackside crowds. His move up to the star-studded BTCC means he's now poised to take on household names such as Jason Plato
and Matt Neal
when 2011's championship – also with massive television coverage on the ITV
network – gets under way back at Brands Hatch on Sunday 3 April.
“It's a major step up for my family-run team, but the BTCC is the big time and we feel, particularly with the benefits of the new NGTC regulations, that the timing is right,” said the 24-year-old. “After winning the Ginetta G50 drivers and teams titles this year, this is the next logical step in my career.
“I enjoyed a terrific run in 2010 with the Ginetta G50 title but moving to a front-wheel-drive touring car in a championship that has millions of fans worldwide and is famed for its door-to-door action is going to require a different approach on and off the track.
"I'm confident that I have the team behind me to propel me to the front of the grid, and everybody involved is looking forward to competing in the UK's premier race series. I'd like to thank all my sponsors for their support in the past and continued assistance in this exciting challenge.
“Hopefully we'll take delivery of our car in late February and get busy testing. We'd like in the future to expand to a two-car team once the team has become established in the BTCC paddock.”