Facebook fans help police find missing Subaru Impreza

A custom-built motorsport car taken from a racetrack has been recovered after fans used Facebook and Twitter to report sightings.

The £80,000 Team Japspeed 1JZ Subaru Impreza was taken from a performance car show at Santa Pod Raceway, near Wellingborough on Sunday.

The 180mph car was built for the sport of drifting, in which cars perform controlled slides around a track.

It was recovered in a garage near Maidenhead, Berkshire on Monday.

The car was undamaged but had been stripped of its bumper, rear spoiler and rear lights as well as its identifying stickers.

The car had earlier been filmed on the M25 west of London.

Performance car fans used social networking sites to report sightings of the vehicle.

'Absolutely delighted'

A Thames Valley Police spokesman said the car had been found in Bucklebury Close, Holyport, in the early hours of Monday.

Four people had been arrested in a joint operation involving Bedfordshire Police, he added.

Paul McCallum, owner of Team Japspeed, said the car had been disabled while on show at the event but the thieves had managed to start it while it was left unattended.

"I was in shock. We've been to hundreds of car shows and never had this happen - people usually have respect," he said.

"I thought I'd never see it again so I'm absolutely delighted it's been found.

"The power of Facebook has been phenomenal - people were posting pictures and sightings of the car. It was a big help."

The car was being used for promotional purposes by Felixstowe-based tyre manufacturer Maxxis International, sponsor of Team Japspeed, whose drivers include Boyzone singer Shane Lynch.

Maxxis spokesman Steve Cain said: "The Maxxis team were overwhelmed by the response from car fans on social media sites.

"The police have also really earned their money by finding the car within 24 hours."

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