Mehdi Bennani - Photo Credit: fiawtcc.com

Bennani scored a career-best sixth place with Proteam at the 2011 season finale in Macau - Photo Credit: fiawtcc.com

Mehdi Bennani will continue to race for Proteam in the World Touring Car Championship in 2012, the Italian outfit have confirmed.

The Moroccan driver has been a regular fixture in the series since making his debut on the streets of his home nation in Marrakech in 2009. He switched from SEAT power to BMW for 2010 when he competed for Wiechers-Sport, before moving over to the Proteam squad for last year.

He finished seventh in the Yokohama Trophy standings and also scored 24 points in the overall championship, helped by four top ten finishes at the three flyaway meetings in Asia at the end of the year. That included a double points finish at the season finale in Macau, with a career-best sixth in the second race around the Guia circuit.

“We are very pleased to keep Mehdi in the team and we expect a further improvement in his performance after the positive season last year,” said team principal Marco Guiducci of the 28-year-old.

“We have also confirmed our technical staff directed by engineer Marco Calovolo,” he added, in reference to the Italian who previously worked with James Thompson.

The team will start testing in February, and are due to announce their second driver soon. Bennani was partnered by former GP2 racer Javier Villa in 2011.