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Five alive: Wayne Boyd is back for a fifth season with United Autosports

Five alive: Wayne Boyd is back for a fifth season with United Autosports

Five alive: Wayne Boyd is back for a fifth season with United Autosports

Wayne Boyd is heading back to the European Le Mans sportscar series with the Anglo-American United Autosports team for a fifth season.

But the race winner from Templepatrick will have two new team-mates on board his LMP3 Ligier prototype for the 2020 campaign.

Rob Wheldon has moved to UA after winning the final round of the Michelin Le Mans Cup at Portimao in an LMP3 Radical and 18-year-old Tom Gamble, a former Ginetta Junior champion who was the McLaren Autosport Young Driver award winner in 2018, is also on board.

Boyd will also race in the Le Mans Cup alongside American John Schauerman.

A former British Formula Ford champion, Boyd has raced for the team since 2016 when he joined their LMP3 programme for their debut season.

He has also raced for the United Autosports LMP2 team as well as being part of their Asian Le Mans Series line-up for the 2018-2019 season, when they finished second in the Championship.

United Autosports, which is owned by American Zak Brown, the chief executive of McLaren Racing, and former English driver Richard Dean, recently revealed that Boyd has started more races - 34 - for the team than any other driver in their squad.

"I'm very excited to be back for my fifth season in the ELMS with United Autosports. Also racing in the Le Mans Cup should be a huge advantage for us in terms of car set-up for each weekend," he said.

"My team-mates Rob and Tom are both well established and fast drivers, so as a line-up we should be very strong. We have already started testing the new car for this season and it's been very positive with lots to learn."

United will also field a second LMP3 car for Jim McGuire, Andrew Bentley and Duncan Tappy as well as their LMP2 team of Phil Hanson, Filipe Albuquerque, Alex Brundle, Will Owen and Job van Uitert.

The season begins with two days of official tests in Barcelona at the end of March before the opening race at the same circuit on April 5.

Meanwhile, Daniel Harper has joined Charlie Eastwood as a member of the British Racing Drivers' Club's SuperStars programme.

Harper was named as a BRDC Rising Star in 2018 and won the Porsche Carrera Cup title last year before the 19-year-old from Hillsborough was signed up to spearhead the return of BMW's famed Junior Team for the next two years.

Currently training in Italy, impressive Harper, who won the Belfast Telegraph's Young Sports Star of the Year award last month, said: "To have now become a SuperStar within the club is incredible and a fantastic opportunity for me.

"The work the team do to help young drivers like me progress in their professional careers is amazing and the roll call of former BRDC SuperStars, including F1 drivers Lando Norris and Alex Albon, speaks for itself."

Belfast Telegraph