Clio cup race-winner Stefan Hodgetts and two-time Ginetta champion Tom Ingram have been announced as the first two drivers to receive support from the newly launched KX Akademy.

The programme, launched at the Oulton Park BTCC meeting earlier this month, aims to support drivers who have displayed the raw talent and single-mindedness to succeed in motorsport, but don't have the necessary funding and support to do so. The programme is led by the KX brand, who currently sponsor the MG BTCC team, with two-time BTCC champion Jason Plato mentoring the Akademy members.

18 year old Ingram is currently racing, and winning races, in the main G55 class of the Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup, having won the G50 class of it in 2011 and the Ginetta Junior championship in 2010. 30 year old Hodgetts meanwhile has been recognised as a great driving talent over the years and recently made a return to track action in the AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK. Both drivers will now be able to complete their respective seasons thanks to the KX backing.

Plato commented “Selecting two candidates for the remainder of this season has been incredibly tough.  There were a fair few drivers that we were interested in but ultimately after some lengthy debates and rigorous interviews we decided upon these two.

“Tom and Stefan are very different characters and each bring something unique to the KX Akademy but they both share one thing; namely talent.  That said there is much for them to learn not just to improve their driving ability but more importantly their ability to create a paying-career and seamlessly move between racing-driver and commercial and astute businessmen”.