Malta’s Jacques Mizzi will make a welcome return to the UK racing scene this year after today, Monday, 24th March, officially finalising a deal with top team Westbourne Motorsport to contest the 12 round Michelin Clio Cup Race Series.
The 21-year-old, from Valletta on the Mediterranean island, made his car racing debut last year in the British Touring Car Championship-supporting Renault UK Clio Cup with Westbourne but is now switching to the sister Clio Cup Series for its first year as a fully-fledged championship.
After becoming Maltese KF1 Karting Champion in 2009, Mizzi graduated to KF2 level the following year and after a season on the sidelines he moved into cars in time trial events driving a Mégane Renaultsport R26.
Travelling to Britain for his maiden season of circuit racing in cars in 2013, Mizzi ended the Renault UK Clio Cup campaign 21st overall with a best result of 11th position during the penultimate weekend at Rockingham. He was also 13th in the Graduate Cup class standings.
By agreeing terms with the Maltese driver for the Michelin Clio Cup Race Series, Westbourne will this year have a presence on each rung of Renault UK’s saloon car ladder with James Colburn (Worthing) and Devon Modell (Maidstone) competing in the Courier Connections Renault UK Clio Cup and Anton Spires (Milton Keynes) racing for Westbourne in the Michelin Clio Cup Road Series.
“Jacques did a tremendous job last year, bearing in mind he had never raced at any of the UK tracks before”, said team principal Richard Colburn, “He’d never even driven a race car in the wet either, coming from Malta, but he progressed well throughout 2013 and his lap times and consistency kept improving during the year.
“It’s going to be the second season in Clios for Jacques and we’ll be expecting him to move to the front of the grid in the Clio Cup Series and challenge for podium finishes. It won’t be easy, as there are a number of very experienced Clio drivers entered for the championship, but I believe he has the ability to do it.”
While the Michelin Clio Cup Race Series and Road Series will get underway over the weekend 5th/6th April at Rockingham International Super Sports Car Circuit, Westbourne’s first competitive Renault action of 2014 will take place at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit this coming weekend, 29th/30th March, with the opening two rounds of the Courier Connections Renault UK Clio Cup.
“Everyone at the team is really excited about the new season and with cars entered in all of the Clio championships, as well as the Junior Saloon Car Championship too, it’s going to be a busy year for Westbourne”, added Colburn.
Along with headline sponsors Michelin and Protyre, the Clio Cup Series is additionally supported by Ferodo and Safety Devices.