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Emmerdale's Kelvin Fletcher excited by Brands BTCC debut

Wednesday, March 23 2016

Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher can't wait to race his heroes in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Championship, which gets underway at Brands Hatch on 2/3 April.

The Oldham-born actor, who has played Andy Sugden in the ITV soap opera since 1996, will be achieving a long-held ambition when he lines up on the grid in a Power Maxed Chevrolet next weekend. His route to the UK's top car racing championship started four years ago.

"I think it's no secret that I was always an avid motorsport fan," the 32-year-old said. "My career in motorsport started relatively late on, in 2012 [when I] entered a Mini championship, club motorsport really.

"[It started with] The Mighty Mini Championship, so that was just a standard road car. That went on to a year in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, which was like a feeder series to the Carrera Cup, and then I did a year in V de V, which is a prototype championship - endurance racing around Europe, with three guest races in the (BTCC-supporting) Porsche Carrera Cup. I took a year out in 2015, [so I'm] back with a bang in the BTCC this year.

"[When] I was racing a few support races with Touring Cars, I was hoping that one day maybe it will be possible to race in British Touring Cars, because this is something I grew up watching as a kid. I was a great fan and to share the circuit with some of the guys like Plato and Matt Neal - it's the old cliché that it's a dream come true."

Kelvin won't have time for hero-worship in the bustle of the BTCC, and says that he isn't expecting to make up the numbers. "I would like to think I will improve by the end of the year and that I'm here on merit, not just that guy on TV," he said.

"I'm very excited to be here, but it's a bit of a dream come true."

Tickets for the opening rounds of the BTCC at Brands Hatch on 2/3 April are available in advance from £27, with free entry for under-13s. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.