Are you Britains next champion?

Do you think you have got what it takes to withstand the pressure of 27 rivals tailing you for the lead? Can you stay in front for 16 laps in atrocious weather conditions? Can you keep a cool head driving a 280bhp-strong car for over 30 minutes?

Vauxhall’s Matt Neal did exactly that in Sunday’s round six of the 2008 HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship at Rockingham, taking home a glorious race victory for VX Racing.

If you think you can match the skill and expertise of Matt Neal and for your chance to be the UK’s next budding racing star why not enter the 2008 VXR Racing Driver of the Year competition?

The prize is a fully-paid motorsport season in the 2009 Dunlop Sport Maxx Cup behind the wheel of a Vauxhall Astra VXR, run by the highly successful Triple Eight Engineering.

The 2007 competition winner, 34-year-old mortgage consultant John Allison from Beverley, was on-site at Rockingham to receive first-hand tricks and tips from Neal ahead of his racing debut at Snetterton in two weeks.

“I had a wonderful time at Rockingham,” said Allison. “I will also race at Rockingham in my 2008 season and I spoke to Matt (Neal) to find out which curbs to use and where the tricky turns are. I obviously couldn’t have wished for better advice as he went on to win a stunner of a race.”

To register, simply visit www.vxrdriver.co.uk to fill in the online questionnaire. From this, 1,620 successful applicants will be put through their paces in the karting semi-finals, before 15 finalists are selected for the intensive three-day final.

Notes to editors

For more information on the 2008 VXR Racing Driver of the Year competition, visit www.vxrdriver.co.uk. The competition is open to all drivers over the age of 21 who have never held an MSA racing license.

The VXR Racing Driver of the Year competition attracted more than 10,000 entrants in 2007. 2,000 of these went on to compete in regional karting semi-finals for one of the coveted 12 places in the Grand Final. The finalists headed to a special three-day boot camp, which included tasks at a Territorial Army centre, media training and press conferences, plus driving elements at Bedford Autodrome.

The 2007 winner, 34-year-old mortgage consultant John Allison from Beverley, East Yorkshire will represent VXR in the 2008 Dunlop Sport Maxx Production Car Cup. John will drive a Vauxhall Astra VXR prepared by the VX Racing team, Triple Eight Engineering.

The competition was filmed by ITV, who produced two one-hour programmes focusing on the final stages of the competition. The repeat of episode two will be shown on ITV4 on Saturday 19 April, 17:00 to 18:00.

Vauxhall is the most successful manufacturer in the modern era of the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), with 114 race wins. Since first entering the BTCC in 1989, Vauxhall’s works team has won 18 titles:

Drivers Championships

Fabrizio Giovanardi (2007) James Thompson (2004) Yvan Muller (2003) James Thompson (2002) Jason Plato (2001) John Cleland (1995) John Cleland (1989) Manufacturers Championships Vauxhall Vectra (2007) VXR Astra Sport Hatch (2005) Astra Coupé (2004) Astra Coupé (2003) Astra Coupé (2002) Astra Coupé (2001) Cavalier GSi (1992) Team Championships (2004, 2003, 2002, 2001)