Former Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race winner Stephen Jelley will make his return to the series with Team Parker Racing in 2017.
Jelley previously raced for West Surrey Racing in both 2008 and 2009 alongside Colin Turkington, claiming two wins and five podium finishes in his second season on the way to sixth place in the Drivers’ Championship.
The former single seater racer will now return to the BTCC as he replaces Alex Martin in the Team Parker Racing Ford Focus ST, Jelley having finished fifth in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB standings last year with Stuart Parker‘s team.
“It was always my aim to come back to the BTCC – I didn’t want to leave, but the finances weren’t there”, said Jelley.
“Team Parker Racing can have a long future in this category and I want a long future here too, so we are looking to build together. I haven’t raced a front-wheel-drive car before so there will be a big test programme ahead of the season to get me up to speed.
“As for my aims, I will wait to see where we are after the opening sessions before we can make a realistic assessment. We are just going to focus on our own performance first and foremost.”
Team boss Parker said: “We are thrilled to have Stephen with us – he has driven for the team for four seasons in the Porsche Carrera Cup in his career and he is part of the fixtures and fittings at the squad.
“We have had two great years with Alex, who was learning all the time. Stephen is a proven race winner at this level and, although he will be getting to grips with front-wheel-drive for the first time, he can help us move forward.
“If we can be challenging inside the top ten, and then who knows what can happen with the reverse-grid draw. This will be an exciting year for us.”