2016 Renault UK Clio Cup champion Ant Whorton-Eales will graduate into the British Touring Car Championship this year with AmDTuning.com.
The 22-year-old caught the eye last season by storming to the Renault UK Clio Cup, securing the title in a dramatic last round at Brads Hatch, and has been duly snapped by the prominent BTCC squad and will team-mate Ollie Jackson in a second Audi S3.
Whorton-Eales, a member of the BRDC Rising Star programme, is thrilled to secure the step up to BTCC and is hoping to follow the path of 2015 Renault UK Clio Cup winner Ash Sutton who claimed the Jack Sears Trophy in his debut campaign.
“It's no secret that I wanted to move into the BTCC this season and we've spent a lot of time looking at the various options that were available,” Whorton-Eales said. “Once we spoke to Shaun about his plans with the second Audi, the deal was a very easy one to do and it was all wrapped up within a day.
“I'm delighted to be able to confirm my place on the touring car grid, and I think that I've made a good choice in AmDTuning.com for my first season. The team has plenty of experience and there is a lot of potential in the Audi that I aim to benefit from.
“As a rookie driver, the main target has to be the Jack Sears Trophy and it would be nice if we could be pushing towards the top ten in the championship by the end of the year.
“Of course that won't be easy and I'm aware that I have a lot to learn, but I also want to aim high and make the most of the opportunity I now have.”
Team boss Shaun Hollamby is delighted to welcome the BTCC rookie to his squad and is confident the youngster can achieve his target of the Jack Sears Trophy in 2017.
“From the moment we confirmed that we would have a second car on the grid, we've spoken to a number of drivers who were keen to join us for 2017, and we're delighted to have been able to do a deal with Ant to fill the seat,” Hollamby said. “Even before winning the Clio title last year, he had shown his potential on track and we're confident that he will be a strong addition to the grid this year.
“Having already won the Jack Sears Trophy once a few years ago, it would be great if we could secure it again this year and there is no doubt we have a fantastic chance with Ant.
“Alongside Ollie Jackson, he gives us a strong partnership for our first full season as a two-car BTCC team and we go into 2017 with our focus firmly on fighting for regular points and on pushing towards the top ten.”