Reigning World Touring Car Champion Rob Huff has made a surprise last-minute move to new WTCC team Münnich Motorsport, where he is to drive the team’s third SEAT León after Markus Winkelhock stepped down from the team.
Huff, 33, was left without a drive for 2013 after his long-time team Chevrolet announced their intention to withdraw from the championship this year. The Brit’s move to the German team has only been made possible after the Münnich’s original third driver, Markus Winkelhock, stepped down in order to be able to focus more on his commitments in GT racing.
Huff’s signing is a big boost to the new WTCC team, who are making the switch from GT racing to touring cars for the coming season.
“Rob’s arrival is a big boost for our ambitions,” said team owner René Münnich. “We want to be at the front of the field right from the beginning, aiming for podium results and race wins. Our goal is a top-three placing in the Drivers’ Championship.”
The move also marks Huff’s return to a SEAT, having last raced one of the Spanish marque’s cars in 2004 when he raced alongside Jason Plato in the British Touring Car Championship.
“It will be quite special to compete in the WTCC with the León and a team that carries the highest amount of professionalism,” said Huff. “I’m delighted to join René and Marc, this is an exciting newly-formed project, but the team have a huge reputation having previously won the FIA GT1 World Championship in 2012. I’m very thankful for the opportunity that I have been given and look forward to building on this relationship.”
Huff had been due to test at Monza today (Wednesday) and Thursday. However due to the snowy weather, the team have opted to head to the Slovakiaring for testing this week.
The announcement means that only one of Chevrolet’s three former drivers, Alain Menu, has not announced their presence on the grid in 2013, after Frenchman Yvan Muller announced his return to the WTCC last week with an as-yet unspecified team, expected to be RML.