Mark Blundell will make a return to frontline motorsport this year having signed to compete in the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship.
Blundell was a winner at the Le Mans 24 Hours and in IndyCar, and has 61 Formula 1 grands prix on his CV. Now he will drive an Audi S3 saloon for the Trade Price Cars team alongside team-mate Jake Hill.
This will be the first time in Blundell’s 32-year racing career that he will have raced in a touring car series. He has signed to compete for the whole season.
“Once the opportunity arose to get back behind the wheel, it was something I was very keen to make happen,” said Blundell. “The British Touring Car Championship is a fantastic series that I have always wanted to race in but it has never been possible until now.
“It is going to be a new challenge for me but one I am really excited by. [BTCC boss] Alan Gow and I have been chatting for a number of years about taking part in the BTCC and I’m delighted that the time is right to finally make this step. At my age, I want to make sure that I am taking on such a prestigious championship while I am still geared up to do so competitively.”
Fifty-two-year-old Blundell claimed three podium finishes in his F1 career, along with an overall victory for Peugeot at Le Mans in 1992.
“To attract a driver who has been on the podium in F1, and who has won at Le Mans and in IndyCar, is a big coup for us as a team, and we are delighted to bring him on board,” said Trade Price Cars team manager Shaun Hollamby. “With the testing programme we have in place, we’re confident that Mark will be up to speed by the time we get to Brands Hatch, and that he will work well with Jake to give us an exciting driver pairing in the Audis for the year ahead.”