Team Hard has signed former British GT champion Michael Caine as its fourth and final driver for the 2018 British Touring Car Championship.

Caine made a two-round return to the series two years ago for TLC Racing Toyota having made his debut in BTCC in 2011 for Airwaves Racing Ford and has impressed in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB and British GT championship in recent seasons.

Having recently re-signed Jake Hill, Caine completes the Team Hard driver line-up alongside Mike Bushell and Bobby Thompson. The quartet will race Volkswagen CC in the Independents’ field.

“When I took the call from the guys at Pioneer Race Events mid-December and spoke to Tony (Gilham), I thought Christmas really had come early for the Caine household,” Caine said. “It wasn’t just about the drive, it had to be a seat that would be competitive.

“I feel that the team has built on consecutive positive campaigns and is now in the right place to be a challenger, with a competitive package in the Volkswagen CC, and the right resources to be a presence in the 2018 championship.

“I cannot wait to get to work with the team and help to transition from potential to delivering. Roll on Round 1 at Brands Hatch.”

“I’ve known Michael (Caine) since racing in Porsche Carrera Cup GB and we used his talents briefly in 2016,” Gilham added. “We have been working with him and his partners to bring a season-long challenge together.

“I feel confident in saying that with Michael’s quality and the backing of the Insightful Technology and Pioneer Race Events, we have the ability to challenge right at the top in 2018. I know for a fact that in Michael, we have a driver who has been looking for a real shot at the BTCC for many years. His motivation and ability will fuel the team’s progression and make us one to watch this season.”