IPSWICH'S Ash Walsh has inked a deal with Matt Stone Racing (MSR) to compete in the 2012 Dunlop V8 Supercar Series.
The series is the second tier of V8 Supercar racing in Australia, also known as the V8 Supercar Development Series.
Walsh spent the balance of 2011 evaluating his options after a split with Miles Racing in last year's development series, in what was then the Fujitsu series, but was never in doubt about his focus on re-entering the series.
"My management group undertook an extensive review of all the options for 2012," the Yamanto racer said.
"There are a lot of really good teams and with lots of driver changes, the market had opened up a bit.
"It was really important to put a package together that we knew could deliver good results and be competitive in a field that will include so many V8 Supercar Championship Teams."
Walsh found out last year how fiercely competitive the series is but he heads into 2012 confident he can make a better impression than his debut season.
"Although Matt Stone Racing is a young team, the elements are there to really compete with the major development series teams," Walsh said.
Team principal Matt Stone agreed with Walsh's assessment.
"MSR wanted to go into 2012 with a good young talent," Stone said. "Ash was on my radar and we were able to put a package together that I'm sure will start to show the potential of our team."
The team will use the ex-Scott McLaughlin Fujitsu chassis from 2011 and the livery and sponsor package will be revealed in Adelaide next week, ahead of the opening round at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide from March 1-4.
The remaining six rounds of the series will be held at Barbagallo, Townsville, Queensland Raceway, Winton, Bathurst and Sydney.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.