Andy Neate has confirmed that he has left Triple Eight Racing, the men behind the MG KX Momentum Racing MG 6 that he drove in the 2012 British Touring Car Championship.

After cheating death in a TVR during the 2008 Britcar 24hr race at Silverstone, Neate made a remarkable recovery to first drive in the BTCC for West Surrey Racing’s BMW in 2010. However; both car and driver struggled and he switched to Team Aon for the 2011 season to drive one of their all new Global Ford Focus.

I am 100 per cent committed to staying on the grid for 2013.

Andy Neate

Neate performed better; often matching his more illustrious team mates but couldn’t quite manage a break through result and at the end of the season, he left Team Aon. Neate than secured a drive with the all new MG KX Momentum team.

2012 was meant to be the chance for Neate to finally shine but while his team mate Jason Plato was challenging for wins and the championship, the Aylesbury racer was struggling to get to grips with the MG. His cause wasn’t helped by getting into many on-track collisions. That earned him the harsh nickname of ‘big wallet little talent’ in some quarters of the BTCC paddock.

Neate ended a disappointing season 16th in the championship with a best position of 12th in race 1 at Croft.

Neate confirmed the departure but admitted the BTCC where he will be staying and said, “I’m no longer with the Triple Eight MG team and that’s my decision. But I am 100 per cent committed to staying on the grid for 2013,”

Andy Neate, MG KX Momentum Racing
Andy Neate, MG KX Momentum Racing

Photo by: Pat Cranham

As for MG this leaves a prize seat next to Plato for 2013. There are many top line drivers on the current market although it is unclear whether they will opt for a big name or recruit a driver that brings sponsorship.

Another option for MG is to promote one of the drivers from team sponsor energy drink KX’s racing academy which is headed by Plato himself. The winners of the academy for 2013 are not announced until January at the annual Autosport Show and it would be no surprise to see a driver from the academy graduate to the big time for 2013.