Race-winning single-seater and touring car team Sean Walkinshaw Racing – SWR – will make its debut in the MINI CHALLENGE next season, fielding a two-car team in the JCW category.

SWR – which is run by Super GT racer Sean Walkinshaw, a son of touring car and sportscar legend Tom Walkinshaw – has ordered two new 265bhp JCW machines and is already in talks with prospective drivers about its plans to enter the championship.

The announcement coincides with the MINI CHALLENGE’s move to become a key part of the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship support package from next year.

SWR made its name in single-seater racing when it was formed back in 2012 to compete in the BRDC Formula 4 Championship. Having won multiple races in that class, and in the subsequent BRDC British Formula 3 Championship, SWR moved into endurance racing in 2017 with a campaign in the GT4 European Series. The team has most recently run cars in the TCR UK Championship, with driver Andreas Backman securing the squad’s first win with its Honda Civic Type-R at Croft.

Following a one-year sabbatical from competition, SWR will return to action and is hoping to make its mark in one of the UK’s most competitive single-make series.

We’re delighted to announce we’ll be back for 2020, and very excited to be making the move into the MINI CHALLENGE,” said Sean Walkinshaw. “It’s fantastic to see how the championship has grown in recent seasons, and the standard of teams and preparation is very high. We’re really looking forward to the fresh challenge.

Being part of the BTCC weekends will be fantastic. It’s also a bit of a homecoming for the Walkinshaw name, being back on the touring car package. Especially with integral members of the team like Ken Page [team manager] who was part of TWR during the Super Touring era, so it’s an exciting time for all of us.”

MINI Challenge Promoter Antony Williams said: “We’ve worked incredibly hard to raise the profile of the MINI Challenge, and with that comes an increase in the level of competition also. It’s great to welcome new teams of all shapes and sizes, and the addition of a proven, race-winning squad like SWR can only be a boost for the championship. The team has shown its strengths in single-seater and touring car racing in the past, so we’re excited to see what it can achieve with the JCWs.”