Photo credit: Graves Motorsport – Left, Bradley Gravett, Right, Max Coates
MINI CHALLENGE race winner Max Coates will continue in the championship for 2021 with Graves Motorsport, a new team to the MINI JCW class supporting the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC). North Yorkshire’s Max Coates will partner with Bradley Gravett, son of 1990 BTCC Champion Robb, at the team.
Coates has retained the sponsorship support of Primex Plastics, JiC Transport, Gala Performance, RGPS, NGK Spark Plugs and Jackson and Graham Accountants as well as new signing Boss Fabrications. His new 2021 livery will be launched in the build up to the new racing season which is set to get underway at Snetterton on the 12–13th June.
Graves Motorsport are based in Colchester, Essex. Established in 2015 they have progressed through from grassroots motorsport to the BTCC support paddock winning multiple championships along the way. With firm ambitions to participate on the BTCC itself in the near future, signing Max and Bradley is the next step towards achievement that. The MINI CHALLENGE visits Snetterton, Brands Hatch, Oulton Park, Knockhill, Donington Park and Coates home circuit, Croft, during the 2021 season in which it remains as a support series to the BTCC events. Featuring live ITV4 coverage reaching 20 million in the UK alone and average crowds of 38,000 people, it makes for an exciting day of action in which the MINI CHALLENGE plays a significant role.
2020 was Coates debut season in the MINI CHALLENGE and he got off to the best start possible with a race win at the opening round at Donington Park. He signed off the season with a pole position at a wet Brands Hatch Indy circuit in October last year and will hope to continue that form in the new season.
On his 2021 racing plans Coates said, “I’m looking forward to a new season of MINI CHALLENGE JCW racing this year and hope that we can continue the success from 2020. I’m delighted to sign with Karl, Dave and Peter at Graves Motorsport, it’s very clear that our future goals align and the essence of a family team really resonates with me. The plan is to mount a serious championship challenge so our focus now is on preparing for the start of the season and starting it as I did in 2020. Unlike 2020, I’m looking forward to spectators, friends, family and sponsors being back trackside with me in 2021, something I missed massively from the racing experience last season.”
“On a separate note, I’d like to thank Eddie, Rich, Martin and Owen at Elite Motorsport, as well as my Dad, Rob, and friend Gary for their support and efforts working on the car last year.”
After signing Max to his team David Graves, Team Manager at Graves Motorsport said, “We’re delighted to sign Max to run under the Graves Motorsport banner in 2021. Max will bring a wealth of JCW experience with him on our progression to the next level. We believe we can work together and be in a position to fight for the championship from the first round in 2021.”
The 2021 MINI CHALLENGE UK season starts at Snetterton on the 12-13th June with the second round hopefully allowing for a full resumption of spectator support as the UK starts to open Covid restrictions in line with its roadmap. Fans will be able to follow the season via Max’s, Graves Motorsport and the MINI CHALLENGE social media as well as live on ITV4 from each event. Tickets for each race meeting are available via the individual circuit’s websites.