Russell Ingall has formally announced that he will join Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport for the 2014 V8 Supercars Championship.
The 49-year-old veteran confirmed the deal at a press event in Melbourne.
Ingall’s car will sport major backing from Phil Munday’s Repair Management Australia, with part-sponsors including Holden and GB Galvanizing.
The announcement confirmed that LDM will scale back to a single car team, running a single Triple Eight-built Holden.
“Plenty of people will be asking why would I come to a small team that has been going through some growing pains,” said Ingall of the deal.
“But I see it as a challenge to help build the team, move it forward and keep it on the grid.
“There are plenty of hero drivers out there that would never ‘lower’ themselves to drive for a small team but I see it as an opportunity to be involved in something from the ground floor.”
Ingall’s 19th season will follow what was billed as his retirement year in 2013 with the Walkinshaw-run Supercheap Auto Racing.
The 2005 champion was first linked to a return with LDM at last year’s Sydney season finale, with the commercial package finalised over recent weeks.
“I wasn’t comfortable last year with how things were presented by some parties about my so-called retirement,” he said.
“I always maintained that if there was a suitable full-time opportunity for this season that I would take it.
“I haven’t changed my mind and made a ‘comeback’. I never left the sport or intended to leave the sport. There were some good offers to join some well-credentialed teams for the endurance races, but a full- time opportunity was always my main focus.
“At the end of the day, my love for the sport and racing cars is undiminished. I love the racing community, it’s given me a lot and I want to stay involved with it.
“’I think the man on the street will understand my situation. Anyone that loves their job or the industry they work in doesn’t want to get pushed out of it before they’re ready.”
Ingall has been replaced at Supercheap Auto Racing by rising star Tim Slade this season.