LADA Sport LUKOIL and Rob Huff join forces for 2014-15 WTCC campaigns
LADA Sport LUKOIL and Rob Huff are delighted to announce an initial two-year deal for the 2014 and 2015 FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) seasons. The team also confirms the current driver line-up (James Thompson and Mikhail Kozlovskiy) for next season.
Huff has been competing at the pinnacle of international touring car racing since the WTCC’s inception in 2005 and will spearhead an expanded three-car LADA Sport LUKOIL attack for at least the next two years.
The 32-year old Briton achieved no fewer than 23 race wins and 44 podium finishes during a seven-year term with the factory-backed Chevrolet outfit, as he inexorably rose to the ultimate prize – the 2012 FIA World Touring Car Championship crown.
World Champion Huff has continued to show pure class and determination during a character-building title-defence year with ALL-INKL.COM Munnich Motorsport, taking the German team to a race win and two podium finishes in 2013, its maiden WTCC campaign.
The fledgling LADA Sport LUKOIL team, meanwhile, has made a debut appearance with a new LADA Granta in 2013 and hopes to utilise Huff’s raw speed, consistency and painstaking attention to detail in his approach to car development to achieve its ambition of winning the World title.
In a move that demonstrates its commitment to the WTCC, the Russian manufacturer forged a precious technical collaboration with the French ORECA outfit in 2013 and will jointly develop a revised version of its Granta model to the championship’s new technical regulations for 2014.
Huff – an official ambassador for OCC LASIK and Newmarket Racecourses – is highly motivated by his new challenge and is relishing the chance of recapturing his WTCC crown in LADA Sport LUKOIL colours alongside British compatriot, James Thompson.
“I’m absolutely 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 who share my vision for the future. I'm also really excited about racing as a team-mate to James Thompson, because we've raced together for many years and I have a huge amount of respect for him. In fact, he won the British Touring Car Championship in 2004, which was my maiden season in touring cars."
“I’m determined to emulate the sort of success I had previously with Chevrolet, taking LADA Sport to the top in the 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.”
LADA Sport LUKOIL Team Principal, Victor Shapovalov, added: “We are very happy to have such a talented and experienced racing driver as a part of our team. LADA Sport LUKOIL has made significant progress since the start of the season. Through the current season, we have proved that the LADA Granta car is capable of being in the top ten and fighting for top five positions. The competitive car together with the excellent driving skills of Rob Huff can contribute much to the team’s success.
"The increased driver line-up for 2014-2015 will help us to strengthen our positions in the championship. In view of a forthcoming season with new manufacturers joining WTCC, we set very ambitious goals. I am sure that the pair of drivers, Huff and Thompson, will be one of the strongest tandems in the championship. Our young talented driver from Russia Mikhail Kozlovskiy will get even more experience cooperating with them."
For more information on LADA Sport LUKOIL, visit the official wtcc.lada.ru website, ‘like’ the team’s Facebook page or follow @ladasportgr on Twitter.
And for more on Rob Huff's racing activities, please visit the official www.robhuff.com website, 'like' his Facebook page or follow @Huffsport on Twitter.