Ian Harrison - Team Director of Triple Eight Race Engineering, who dominated the 2001 BTCC with their Vauxhall Astra Coupes - has now taken control of the team, having bought out the holdings of former Chairman Derek Warwick and Managing Director Roland Dane. Highly-respected Harrison, who managed the Williams Formula One team in 1993 and 1994, now takes control of the company, who are preparing to defend their titles in this year's BTCC.

Harrison was one of the founders of Banbury-based Triple Eight, having led the Williams Renault Touring Car team to success. He stepped away from race day involvement with the BTCC team in 1999, focussing on Vauxhall's unique LPG powered Vectra race car, which won three times in the Vectra Challenge series while under Harrison's care. Harrison was a key player in the success of the team last season.

Tripe Eight Race Engineering was set up in 1996 with Derek Warwick as the principle driving force, originally with the intention of running cars for a Japanese manufacturer - 888 being a lucky number in Japan. The team failed to secure that deal, but won the contract to run Vauxhall's BTCC Vectras away from RML, with Warwick joining the driver line-up alongside Vauxhall legend John Cleland.

The Vectra proved difficult to turn into a race winner, though it did provide Warwick with his sole BTCC win in a finely judged drive through the field at Knockhill in 1998. With a rule change in the BTCC for 2001, the Vauxhall Astra was the car to beat, the team winning all bar one of the 26 races.


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