Lorcan Hanafin (Guiseley) has announced his plans to contest the inaugural Renault UK Clio Cup Junior championship, with the Team Pyro squad.

Lorcan, who only turned 14 last December, has been a leading name in the Rotax Mini Max karting category these past two years with the famed Strawberry Racing outfit (he was fourth in 2016’s Super 1 National championship).

Currently he is on course to become the youngest driver on the UK Clio Junior grid when the championship gets under way at Snetterton, Norfolk in September.

Lorcan, who will be sponsored by world-leading specialist motor sport insurance company MISmotorsport.com, commented: “I am delighted to have this opportunity and look forward to racing in the Renault UK Clio Cup Junior championship. We have done a lot of winter testing and, having recently taken delivery of a new car, I’m very excited.”

And said Team Pyro Principal Mark Hunt: “We’re very excited about bringing Lorcan into car racing – he’s had really encouraging results in karting and from what we’ve seen so far we believe he could be very strong in the new UK Clio Cup Junior category.”

Renault UK Clio Cup Junior is an entry level car racing category for drivers aged 14 to 17 years old. They will be in cars almost identical to those used in the Renault UK Clio Cup which stars at British Touring Car events.

The only changes are a minor modification to the car’s ECU – limiting it to five gears and 100mph – and a switch to road specification tyres, Michelin’s high performance Pilot Sport 3.

Clio Cup Junior’s inaugural championship will comprise eight rounds – two each at Snetterton, Brands Hatch in Kent, Pembrey in Carmarthenshire and Brands Hatch again. CLICK HERE for the dates.

The Champion will win a FREE registration into the senior UK Clio Cup – a prize valued at approximately £18,000. Second and third place will win discounts on a Renault Sport registration in 2018. Each race winner will also be rewarded with a set of Michelin tyres for use in a Renault Sport category next year.

Will Fewkes, Renault Sport’s UK Motorsport Championship Manager, said: “Lorcan is a very exciting addition to the new UK Clio Cup Junior grid and it’s great to see a driver who’s been a front-runner in karting choosing our championship to make their transition to cars.

“Indeed many drivers who have racing in karts seem able to get on quickly with the characteristics of the UK Clio Cup Junior car which is also the most technically advanced car out there in the junior racing market place.”