SPEEDWORKS Motorsport will count again this season on a driver that captured the British Touring Car Championship’s Independents Trophy last year.

Tom Ingram took four wins behind the wheel of the Northwich outfit’s Toyota Avensis in 2017, which left him third in the overall standings.

It also secured a maiden privateer title for the team.

Their aim is to improve.

“After what we accomplished there can only be one objective for 2018 – and that’s the overall title,” said Ingram.

“What we did last term with the resources we had, up against a host of more experienced and better-funded rivals, was nothing short of phenomenal.

“Winning two titles was a huge tick in the box, but we don’t plan on stopping there; we want to push even more.

“Several teams will be rolling out new cars, while the Avensis is a proven package which means we can hit the ground running.”

That is exactly what 24-year-old did in 2017, when he racked up eight top-five finishes in the first nine races.

That included a victory at Brands Hatch, in the campaign’s curtain-raiser, and at Donington Park.

Team principal Christian Dick, who runs Speedworks along with wife Amy, has worked with Ingram since the High Wycombe racer stepped up to the UK’s premier car series in 2014.

“For us, there was never any doubt that we wanted Tom back in the car,” he said.

“He is an absolutely integral part of the team and continues to get better.

“Some of his drives last year were frankly mind-blowing, and if he maintains that curve of progression then everybody else should be very worried.”

He admitted that the way Speedworks’ rivals now view them has changed.

However he is confident too that they can raise the bar again.

“It’s fair to say that 2017 was a watershed campaign for us,” added Dick.

“To make a leap from occasional podium-finishers to race-winners and then to title-contenders marked a significant step forward.

“The key to that was our consistency.

“We have complete confidence in Tom to get the job done, and faith too that in the Avensis we can give him the car he needs to battle for honours once again.”

The new season’s opening round is at Brands Hatch in April.

An official campaign launch precedes that at Donington Park.