John Thorne’s team had previously raced successfully in UK club racing since 2007, before making the big step up to the daunting world of British Touring Cars in 2012.
Thorne’s racing career began in 2007 with the Production BMW Championship, taking one win and one fastest lap, competing with his own team, Thorney Motorsport. In 2009 they participated in the Lotus Elise Trophy in a Vauxhall VX220 and the Dunlop Productions Saloons championship driving a BMW M3, also taking two race wins in 2009 in the BMW CSL Cup and four in 2010 before entering the GT Cup in 2011 and pondering a BTCC future under the new NGTC regulations.
He and his own team then decided to enter an NGTC-specification Vauxhall Insignia in the BTCC for 2011. The car made its first public appearance at the final round of the 2011 season at Silverstone, although that turned out to consist of a warm-up lap to showcase the new machine.
They then made a full-time assault on the championship the following year with Thorne behind the wheel of the Insignia, although he suffered a rough learning start to BTCC life and soon the team had to skip the third, fourth and fifth rounds of the championship.
On their return, a 13th place finish proved the season’s highlight as the team picked up their first points of the year, Tony Gilham taking the wheel of the car on that occasion at Snetterton before the team folded from BTCC as the team sold their Vauxhall Insignias to Gilham’s HARD squad for 2013.
|2011 – Thorney Motorsport|
|67||John Thorne||NGTC||Vauxhall Insignia||*|
|Independent Teams Championship|
|2012 – Thorney Motorsport|
|28||Chris Stockton||NGTC||Vauxhall Insignia||**|
|34||Tony Gilham***||Vauxhall Insignia||17||71|
|66||John Thorne||Vauxhall Insignia||28||0|
|Independent Teams Championship||12||19|
* Retired in first race at Silverstone and did not start remaining two races
** Withdrew from Silverstone round
*** Took part for Thorney Motorsport at Silverstone, raced with his own team for the rest of the year