FORMER British Touring Car driver Sam Tordoff, grandson of JCT600 founder Jack, will be joining Acespeed Historic Motorsport for selected events during 2020, which should hopefully include Goodwood and the Silverstone Classic.

The Shipley-based Acespeed team are delighted to welcome 30-year-old Tordoff, who is from Rawdon, to their team.

Team principal Andy Harrison enthused: "We are a Yorkshire-based racing team and Sam is one of the best circuit racers that Yorkshire has produced in recent years.

"We are delighted that he will be bringing a great deal of experience and knowledge to our team and we hope to achieve great things."

Tordoff was equally excited to be involved, saying: "I have known Andy and his team for many years and we have raced together before.

"I really enjoy racing historic cars and there is much less pressure than in touring cars, though the will to win remains the same.

"Whizz (see below) is a beautifully prepared car and great fun to drive. It is a real opportunity for a David and Goliath act, competing against much larger cars."

The team's main race car will be the 1965 Mini Cooper S, built to Pre 68 FIA regulations.

Resplendent in grey with a black roof, the car was built as a tribute to long-time friend of the team and racer Barry "Whizzo" Williams, who passed away in 2018 at the age of 79.

Preparations for the season started with a test day at Goodwood, where the car was put through its paces by Harrison and Tordoff.

Using his experience as a professional driver, Rawdon star Tordoff was able to make several suggestions that would improve the car's performance, and he said afterwards: "The car is running really well and I am sure it will be competitive.

"Goodwood is a really nice circuit and has a very special atmosphere.

"I am really looking forward to seeing how we perform against some of the other teams."

Acespeed, meanwhile, are celebrating their 25th year of operation, preparing and restoring classic cars for the road, racing and rallying.

Their Shipley headquarters are a mecca for Mini owners, as the company specialise in this marque in particular.

And they have pulled off a real coup in signing Tordoff, who is one of the UK’s most successful tin-top racing drivers.

Since his karting debut at the age of 11, the Rawdon-based driver has gone on to set an enviable benchmark across a number of high profile championships.

These include the British Touring Car Championship, British GT Championship and Porsche Carrera Cup GB.