Saloon race champion Doug Ross is the latest driver to sign to contest the Volkswagen Racing Cup – and it’s all thanks to encouragement and finance from his wife, Caroline.
Forty-year-old race instructor Ross, from Northampton, won the Proton coupe championship in 2000 but has not been a regular competitor since 2001, when he raced a Renault Clio. ‘I was resigned to spending another season as a spectator,’ said Doug, ‘but then my wife, who has started a new business, said she she’d like to lend me the budget for a year in the Racing Cup.’
Ross will contest the Hankook-backed championship at the wheel of a Polo hatchback with a 200bhp, 2-litre 20-valve power unit. The car has been built by RacingLine and will be run by Doug’s own Milestones Motorsport team.
‘It’s a car new to the championship and it has great potential… Our aim is to build a reliable platform from which to work and then see how we go from there.’
Ross is one of several newcomers to the championship: former stock hatch racers Darren Blumson and Richard Kingsnorth are among the drivers planning a debut full season, along with Graham Needham.
Many old faces are returning also, including reigning champion Paul Taylor, and Golf GTI racers Michael McInerney, Steve Wood and Mike Kurton. Isle of Man-based driver Paul Lloyd-Roach is testing his Beetle RSi with a new team this week with a view to rejoining.
The British GT/F3-supporting Volkswagen Racing Cup in association with Hankook enjoys the additional support of Augustus Martin, Castrol, ECM Vehicle Delivery, Europcar, Milltek Sport, Mondial Assistance, KW Automotive, Superchips, TNT Logistics, Turbo Dynamics, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and Volkswagen Financial Services UK.
The opening rounds of the championship will be held at the Oulton Park circuit in Cheshire on Easter Monday (9 April).
– Volkswagen Motorsport