If any proof were needed that next years BTCC is going to be a hit, the fantastic five car dice at Brands Hatch between the two Peugeot 306's of Alan Morrison and Toni Ruokonen, the two Alfa Romeo's of Tom Ferrier and Gavin Pyper and the lone Honda of James Kaye was proof enough.

The racing in the 'baby class' this year has been just as lose, if not closer, than the action seen at the front of the field and interest levels are steadily climbing. The field has grown from the paltry four cars seen at the opening round and what the class has lacked in quantity it has made up for in quality. The title chase has come down to a head to head fight between the Peugeot of Morrison and the Honda of Kaye with a mere 17 points separating them with four races remaining.

With the announcement that Morrison will continue to be partnered by a member of the marque's crack National Saloon squad at Oulton Park and the news that saloon car veteran Andy Middlehurst will debut the RJM Motorsport Nissan Primera at the same event, the Class B ranks will swell to ten.

Middlehurst is an experienced National Saloon driver who campaigned a Primera in the BTCC during the fledgling years of the Super Touring era. In recent years Middlehurst gained a great deal of success in the NS Championship with his fearsome Skyline and the veteran has kept his hand in this year with a ride in the Spa 24 Hours touring car event.

Middlehurst's entry will mean Nissan draw level with Honda on sheer numbers in the class. Ex-racer John Bintcliffe also runs a two-car Primera outfit for Marc Nordon and Robert Collard. After some initial engine problems the cars have come on a great deal, culminating with a win for Collard at Snetterton although they are not on a par with the Peugeot's and Honda's yet.

Gary Ayles' impressive two car Alfa Romeo 156 squad have also confirmed that they will contest the final four races of the Championship with drivers Ferrier and Pyper. The team have also been targeted by series promoters BMP to run the official 'Junior Squad' in 2001, and Ferrier is already a product of the T-Car Championship that caters for drivers under 18years of age.