HMS RACING team boss Simon Belcher is hoping for success on water as well as road this year after revealing his return to the European Jet Sport Championship - 17 years after he won the title.

Belcher, the team principal of Swindon’s Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) team HMA Racing, will race a Dean’s Team Yamaha GP1800 in the four-stroke class of the water-borne championship and pilot a Retrojet Seadoo XP machine in the two-stroke class.

Belcher stepped aside from his driving duties with HMS at the end of 2015, with current driver Rob Austin stepping into the hotseat.

“I’m very excited to be entering the European Jet Sport Championship this year”, said the 44-year-old.

“Since stepping out of the driving seat in the BTCC and taking up the team manager role, I’ve been craving competitive racing and Jet Sport is a no-pressure environment for me, which makes it incredible fun.

“My interest was rekindled when I made what was supposed to be, a one-off return for charity at the end of 2016 when we raised over £5,000 for Cancer Research.

“I really enjoyed it and that led to a few outings last year in the British Championship and a one-off event in Belgium where I won my first race since returning to the sport.

“Having won the European title in 2001, it’ll be great to be back 17 years later to see how I get on.

“I’ll race in both the two-stroke and four-stroke classes initially before evaluating which of those to concentrate on.

“I may not be fit enough at my age to race in both. I hope my experience can take the fight to the younger front-runners and the aim is to have a lot of fun and some success.

“It would be great to pick up more wins, and maybe even another European title, but it’ll be extremely hard against the young talent that exists in Europe.

“Both classes are filled with national, European and world champions so I need to up my game for sure.

“I also plan to race in the British and Belgian Championships when they don’t clash with my commitments in the BTCC.”