Just over three months ago, Motorbase Performance announced that they would be looking for a new commercial partner after Wrigley Company Ltd announced that the Airwaves branding would not be present on the Wrotham based BMW 320si cars in 2010.
Fast forward three months and Motorbase have confirmed that Airwaves will be returning as the title sponsor for the 2010 season, with Leyland Paints returning as another commercial partner for the team.
Speaking when it was first announced that Airwaves would cease to be the team's main backer, David Bartrum said: “Airwaves was a brilliant partner for our second season in the BTCC and their support helped lift the awareness of the team to a new level.”
With the news that Airwaves and Leyland Paint will return as team sponsors, Bartrum said: “To be honest, it's been a hard two weeks! March is always a difficult month, trying to tie the last few ends together, but this has been manic!
“When we introduced Wrigley's Airwaves to the BTCC last year we were ecstatic to have secured such a hugely recognisable brand as our title sponsor. People see Airwaves as the chewing gum that helps you 'Kick up a gear' and this association, as well as the brands support is of massive benefit to us. its great news for the championship that brands like Airwaves and Leyland Paints feel it is the place to be!”
Airwaves BMW have yet to announce their 2010 driver line up, and after the news that Rob Collard has jumped ship to WSR, this leaves the team with two seats to fill, and Bartrum explains the current situation: “Our original plan was to run a BTCC newcomer alongside an experienced driver, in the same way that we brought Steven Kane and Jonny Adam to touring cars over the past couple of years – that's how the BTCC grows and sustains itself. I’m not sure it will quite work out like that now . . . as things stand today, we might even go one better.”
Initial thoughts on Bartrums comments suggested that the 2009 Champion, Colin Turkington could join the team, but this seems unlikely after Turkington announced he hasn't got the money to defend his title. Steven Kane has tested with the team recently, while another former BMW driver, Mat Jackson, has been linked with a move to the Kent based BMW team. Whoever Airwaves BMW announce, it'll give them potentially the strongest driver line-up on the BTCC grid for 2010.
The season opening rounds of the 2010 BTCC season take place at Thruxton, Hampshire on the 3rd and 4th April, with the official media day on the 23rd March at Brands Hatch.
Photo credit: BTCC.net