The Jack Sears Trophy will be awarded to the top-performing S2000 driver in the 2013 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, it has been announced.

S2000 cars which have populated the BTCC grid since 2004 remain eligible to compete in next season's championship, but will no longer enjoy strict performance parity with the greater number of latest NGTC machines which will become the dominant force.

However, as previously announced, the BTCC will present a cup to the highest S2000 finisher in each race, as some teams and drivers continue to use the S2000 cars as part of their graduation through the BTCC ranks.

"Ultimately the driver with the most 'cups' will be awarded the Jack Sears Trophy at the end of the season - named, fittingly, in recognition of not only a great double BTCC Champion but also the BTCC's first ever Champion," said BTCC series director, Alan Gow.

"To receive the trophy from a true legend like Jack will be a real privilege for the winner."

Sears won the first-ever BTCC (nee British Saloon Car Championship) in 1958 in a dramatic tie-breaker race and followed that up with a second crown in 1963.

"It'll be 55 years in 2013 since I won my first title and 50 since I was fortunate enough to win it a second time - I feel very honoured that the championship wants to create a trophy in my name after all these years," added the 82-year-old. "It's certainly a championship that values its heritage.

"The cars of course have improved hugely in that time and the S2000s have provided great entertainment and variety. It's good to retain a type of car that has been successful and I'm sure, even though smaller in numbers in 2013, the S2000 runners will continue to put on a great show for the public.

"I very much look forward to presenting the trophy to the deserving winner next October on Finals Day at Brands Hatch - scene of my first title all those years ago."