EXCELR8 Motorsport has named teenage racer Thomas Jack Lee as the latest member of its JCW line-up for the 2023 MINI CHALLENGE season.

Lee, who will turn 16 shortly before the season gets underway at Donington Park in April, will become one of the youngest drivers on the grid when he makes the move into the series on the back of a fine campaign last year in the BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship.

In his first full season of car racing last year, Lee battled to a maiden win on his debut weekend at the Brands Hatch Indy circuit and would go on to score nine wins across the campaign – including hat-tricks at both Snetterton and Knockhill.

It resulted in a second place overall finish in the standings, with Lee also taking top honours amongst the rookies.

Keen to now progress to senior-level competition on the back of his success last season, Lee will join forces with EXCELR8 as part of the team’s multi-car assault on the MINI CHALLENGE’s headline JCW class.

The decision to step directly into JCWs will provide Lee with the chance to showcase his talent at a higher level, whilst partnering with EXCELR8 will ensure the youngster can benefit from a wealth of experience within the multiple title-winning team.

Lee has already sampled the JCW machine, having had the chance to get behind the wheel alongside EXCELR8 regular Ronan Pearson late last year.

“It’s hugely exciting for me to be moving into the MINI CHALLENGE JCW series for 2023,” he said. “Running alongside the BTCC means the opportunity for me to compete on the biggest package in UK motorsport as part of a big grid, and with EXCELR8, I feel I have the best team behind me to take on the challenge. It has shown what it can do across a number of championships in recent years, and is a team I could see myself working with on a longer-term basis as I look to further my career.

“When I had the chance to test the car, I was open-minded about what to expect as I knew it would be a lot different to the Fiesta, and working alongside Ronan really helped me to get up to speed. I was able to make use of his experience to settle in quickly and I was happy with the pace I displayed, which I feel gives me a good platform to now build on.

“The higher speeds, longer races and the fact that the JCW is more on edge compared to what I have raced before means there will be a lot of new challenges ahead, but I feel ready for it. Being precise and avoiding mistakes is going to be key, and I really want to show what I can do on a bigger stage.

“As one of the youngest drivers on the grid, the goal has to be to learn as much as I can from the team and work hard to improve as the season goes on. Hopefully I can soon be in a position to challenge for rookie podiums, and work my way up the overall order.”

Team owner Justina Williams said she was delighted to bring Lee onboard for his rookie campaign.

“We’re hugely excited to welcome Thomas Jack into the team as, despite his limited experience, he has shown himself to be a driver with a huge amount of potential,” she said. “To secure the results he did last year in his rookie season in cars was hugely impressive, as was his performance when he got behind the wheel of the JCW last year.

“He took onboard all the advice that Ronan and the team provided, and that was reflected in the amount of progress he made in a very short amount of time. Although it’s important for him to keep his feet on the ground going into the new season, we’re confident that he can show what he is capable of over the course of 2023.”