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jonathan adam

Airwaves BMW

March 26th 2009

The new boy in the Motorbase Performance BTCC squad is Jonny Adam, and based on early testing, he's going to be a big star in the Airwaves BMW.

Jonathan AdamThe deal to race with Motorbase first started soon after the end of the 2008 season, but was not finally confirmed until March. "This is the step I've always aspired to make," said Adam, who shook the BTCC establishment by posting second fastest overall time in the vital pre-season test at Brands on 24 March.

"We did a test last October with Motorbase at Brands and the test went very well," said the 24-year old Scot. "I adjusted well, as rear-wheel drive is quite different to the SEAT and Clio championships. From there on it was just a case of trying to get a deal done and Airwaves is a great brand to come on board. It's a strong package and will allow me to show what I can do in touring cars. Last year, after winning the SEAT Cupra Championship, was a good year to move up and I felt ready for the move."

Adam's career goes back to 2003 when he started car racing in Formula Ford. He also did a couple of Formula Renault races and then switched to saloon cars in 2004. "I had my heart set on single-seaters at a young age, but you want to become a professional driver and that's why I made the switch."

Renault Clios in 2004 was a good learning year and he finished third overall before winning the Winter Series. "We planned on having a move to touring cars but the budget wasn't there, so we decided to do another year. I won the Clio championship in 2005 with 11 wins, which was a record number."

Jonathan AdamAgain for 2006 they looked at touring cars but couldn't make the move. "So we decided to do the SEAT championship because there was good prize money on offer. We did that with TCR and finished third behind Matt Jackson," he says. "SEAT then brought out the new Leon, so we decided to race that in 2007 and won the championship. Once again we looked at the BTCC for 2008, but couldn't get the budget, so stayed in SEAT in 2008 and had a tough year. I started the year with some car trouble, but it went very well in the end and I won the championship."

Finally, having battled to make the step up to the BTCC for four years, the chance came and this personable young racer is going to make the very best of a fantastic opportunity.

"This is a chance that I thought might never come. But you just can't give up. The situation is perfect for me because the team has got the same mentality as me; they want to win. They've had a year with the BMW and showed at Brands Hatch that they can perform at the front. That's a good baseline to work from."

Although he knows he has a mountain to climb, Adam is not over-awed by his new surroundings. "To begin with, my target is a podium. I think we'll have good pace from the word go and I feel that I'm dialling into the car quite quickly. Race wins are the goal for the second half of the year. It's a very professional team, but there is a fun side to it as well. I'm really looking forward to Brands Hatch; it's a big weekend for the team and it's a circuit that suits the BMW."

So, at Brands Hatch on 4/5 April, Jonny will be the one pinching himself, hardly able to believe that he has finally made it into the BTCC. "This is a dream for me and it's something that I've been working hard to achieve and it's finally come off. I don't think it has really sunk in yet. I think it will come qualifying at Brands; that I am a touring car driver."