Birmingham's NEC will be the venue for the official unveiling of HMS Racing’s brand new Alfa Romeo Giulietta racecar during the opening day of Autosport International the day after tomorrow (Thursday) on the Motorsport News 60th Anniversary Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship stand.
Four months since the race-winning Swindon team confirmed a partnership with the Alfa Romeo Dealer Council to bring the legendary Italian marque back to the all-action BTCC, the squad is literally counting the hours until Thursday lunchtime’s official launch at 12.30.
Taking centre stage on the Motorsport News BTCC stand in Hall 6, the HMS Racing Alfa Romeo will be present alongside other contemporary touring cars and classic BTCC racers, including the famous Alfa 155 with which Italian superstar Gabriele Tarquini won the championship in 1994.
“We can’t wait for Thursday – the excitement level is off the scale!”, said HMS team principal Simon Belcher, “Everyone has been working flat-out since the announcement in August we’d be bringing the Alfa Romeo marque back to the BTCC, now we’re just a few days away from unveiling what I think everyone will agree is a truly stunning car.
“It’s amazing that famous badge is going to be back in the BTCC and I’m very proud of all the hard work which has gone into designing and constructing our first BTCC car from scratch. We’re also very much looking forward to confirming our fantastic sponsors for 2018 on Thursday, the people who have made all of this possible.”
He added: “Everyone is welcome to come along to the stand and speak to the team members, Rob [Austin – HMS driver] and I will be there across all four days and we’re looking forward to answering any questions about the new car, the desire to bring Alfa into the BTCC again and the 2018 season in general…and maybe cast our minds back to Rob’s win in the final round last season!”
For HMS Racing driver Rob Austin, Thursday’s unveiling really cannot come soon enough and he has plentiful praise for the teamwork behind the scenes which has delivered the brand new car so soon in the New Year. “I’m really excited to unveil the car on Thursday, I’m aware that I am biased but I think it’s an absolutely stunning car and with a badge that represents the passion and excitement for motorsport that is so prevalent in our team”, said the Evesham racer.
“I can’t think of any entirely new BTCC car in recent times that has been ready to go so early in the year, indeed there are many cars that aren’t new which still aren’t ready," Austin continued. "So we really are ahead of the game, and that’s thanks to the support of our fantastic sponsors, the hard work of the HMS Racing team and our suppliers. Being the first to have our 2018 plans confirmed, and being ready in such good time, we hope will bode well for the season. We want to see this beautiful piece of machinery start its BTCC career as the Toyota ended [last season].”