2012 World Touring Car Champion Rob Huff will race for Lada next year and says he hopes to repeat his achievements with Chevrolet by taking a manufacturer to the front of the series.
Chevrolet’s departure left Huff driving an ageing SEAT Leon for the All-Inkl.com Munnich Motorsport squad this year, but he will return to the wheel of a factory car next year.
He will drive a third Granta machine alongside existing drivers James Thompson and Mikhail Kozlovskiy, and has signed a two-year deal.
“I’m delighted with this new association with Lada Sport Lukoil and it’s a massive thrill to be back with a manufacturer team,” said Huff. “It will be an honour to work with such an ambitious and hard-working group of people.”
He explained he was looking forward to partnering fellow British driver Thompson, and that together they could help Lada contend for overall honours.
“I’m also really excited about racing as a team-mate to James Thompson, because I have a huge amount of respect for him.
“I’m determined to emulate the sort of success I had with Chevrolet, taking Lada Sport to the top in WTCC. The team is still fairly new to the championship and I hope to be able to use my knowledge and experience to make an active contribution towards building a championship-winning outfit.”
Team Principal Viktor Shapovalov was delighted to have attracted Huff to his setup, as Citroen arrives in the series next year with Yvan Muller and Sebastien Loeb as drivers.
“We are very happy to have such a talented and experienced driver as part of our team,” said Shapovalov.
“We have made significant progress since the start of the season and proved that the Lada Granta car is capable of fighting for the top five positions.
“Rob Huff’s driving skill can contribute much to the team’s success. The increased driver line-up for 2014 and 2015 will help us to strengthen our position. In view of a forthcoming season with new manufacturers joining, we set very ambitious goals. I am sure that the pair of Huff and Thompson will be one of the strongest in the Championship.”
Lada have scored a best result of fifth in their comeback season, thanks to Thompson at the manufacturer’s home event in Moscow. Thompson lies 14th in the drivers’ standings while Russian rookie Kozlovskiy has failed to score since taking over for the second round from Aleksei Dudukalo, who was sacked after crashing into Thompson in qualifying for the opening round in Monza and ruling both cars out for the weekend.