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Brett Lidsey (Northfleet) has announced he will contest 2018’s Renault UK Clio Cup with the MRM Racing team.

Lidsey will compete in eight of the season’s nine events but will have to give Oulton Park’s rounds in June a miss as they clash with his marriage to fiancée Graziella.

The 26-year-old becomes the first driver to confirm his place on 2018’s grid. He and the small MRM squad performed strongly in their first three events together in the championship in 2017 and also achieved four race wins in the corresponding Clio Cup Benelux series.

MRM then went on to win the inaugural Renault UK Clio Cup Junior title with 16-year-old Northern Irish driver Jack Young (Belfast).

Lidsey will be sponsored by Liftout Ltd, a company which specialises in the installation of industrial escalators and also heavy plant removal. He commented: “I have a terrific relationship with MRM – they are a team on the up and it’s nice to be with a team that is building for the future.

“I believe anything is possible in terms of results – qualifying is an area I’d like us to work on, but we showed in just three outings in 2017 that in a race situation we were able to make places and get in among the top ten.”

Mike Ritchie, Principal of Bristol-based MRM, said: “It’s great to get Brett announced so soon – there’s a lot of potential there and he’s just the sort of driver to help us grow after an encouraging first few events together in 2017. Our longer-term goal is to run two cars so watch this space.”

The 2018 Renault UK Clio Cup gets under way with its opening two rounds at Lidsey’s home circuit of Brands Hatch, Kent on Sat 7/Sun 8 April. All 18 of its rounds will take place at the British Touring Car Championship’s high-profile events meaning it appears in front of huge trackside crowds (38,500 on average in 2017) and also live on ITV4.

Renault Sport’s UK Motorsport Manager Will Fewkes added: “Brett and MRM are going to be a pairing really worth watching in 2018 when we again anticipate the UK Clio Cup grid will arguably be the most competitive single-make saloon car championship anywhere in Europe.”

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