Southland's Leitch set for sixth Toyota Racing Series

Southland's Brendon Leitch will compete in his sixth straight Toyota Racing Series in 2019. Photo: Bruce Jenkins
Southland's Brendon Leitch will compete in his sixth straight Toyota Racing Series in 2019. Photo: Bruce Jenkins
The Southland flag will again fly in this year's Toyota Racing Series, New Zealand's premier motorsport series.

Brendon Leitch has confirmed he will line up in his sixth consecutive Toyota Racing Series when it starts in January.

The 23-year-old Invercargill driver won races in the category last season and finished third in the title race in 2016.

As well as competing in the championship in 2018, he finished second in New Zealand's North Island Endurance Championship, driving a Mercedes SLS.

He has also been driver training at Highlands Motorsport Park - which will be the venue for the first event of the five-round championship.

His presence will be an added boost for the second round of the series, which will be held at Leitch's home track of Teretonga Park in Invercargill.

As well as having five Toyota Racing Series under his belt, his career in New Zealand also includes second and third places in the National Formula Ford 1600 title.

Having also played a role in helping Toyota shake down cars in recent years, Leitch will start the campaign as by far the most experienced driver in the Toyota FT-50 chassis that is used by all teams in the series.

His car will once again be backed by long-time sponsor Dayle ITM and will be run by Nelson-based team Victory Motor Racing, which has run the popular Kiwi racer in all his previous Toyota Racing Series campaigns.

''It's shaping up to be a fantastic championship this coming season with some great drivers from junior formulae around the world,'' Leitch said.

''And they're some of the best, too, who all have aspirations like myself to be racing in some of the top classes of motorsport in the world.

''I know the car and I know the team, and I also know the circuits probably better than most, so there is every opportunity to go well this season,'' Leitch said.

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