NORTH YORKSHIRE racing driver Max Coates is gearing up for a weekend to remember at Croft Circuit – with a custom-built car set to be unveiled in his honour.

Coates will be competing in the Renault UK Clio Cup on Saturday and Sunday, one of the main support series for the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship, which is being staged at Croft.

As well as preparing for this weekend’s action, the Scorton speedster has spent the last few weeks working with his sponsors, RMB Renault, to design a unique Renault Clio road car modelled on the race car he will be driving at Croft.

The finished version will be unveiled at his home track this weekend, after the finishing touches were applied at RMB’s Darlington base.

Paul Walker, general manager of RMB Renault, said: “When we started working with Max, we came up with the idea of designing a one-off road car based on the car he drives in the Clio Cup.

“We mocked up a few ideas, and the end result will be at Croft this weekend. We’ve added a few custom-built elements to the car – a special rear wing, a shark fin aerial and a red-and-black theme based around Max’s racing number, 71 – but we didn’t want to go too over the top.

“The end result is pretty tasteful, and it’ll be available for sale as a limited-edition model. Hopefully, Max will enjoy being part of the unveiling, and then go on to have an equally successful time on the track.”

Coates, who drives for Team HARD, goes into this weekend’s two races at Croft sitting in third position in the Renault UK Clio Cup championship standings.

He is hoping to claim the drivers’ crown this year before progressing to the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship starting grid, and is excited at the prospect of competing at his home track.

Croft Circuit has had a complete resurface during the winter, and this weekend’s racing should be the fastest ever staged at the North Yorkshire venue.

Coates said: “It’s going to be a special weekend. I’ve got about 120 guests and sponsors coming along, and being able to show off the new road car is going to be great. There aren’t many racing drivers in the world that have had a one-off road car built for them, so I’m in a privileged position.

“It’s nice to have been part of that, but the priority this weekend is to do well on the track. Croft has been good to me in the past, and hopefully that will carry on this weekend. It would be nice to get back on to the top of the podium at my home circuit.”