Wales

Superleague motor racing team relocates to Rhondda

Anthony Reid with a superleague car
Image caption Anthony Reid said commuting to Silverstone from Monmouth had become 'a chore'

An international motor racing team has relocated from Silverstone to Treforest in Rhondda Cynon Taf.

Atech Reid competes in the Superleague, a field of V12-powered cars with the liveries of global football clubs.

The team, run by Anthony Reid, from Cardiff, hopes to expand from 20 to 56 over the next three years, with help from the assembly government.

They will compete in six European races from April to November as well as in Australia, Brazil and China.

Mr Reid described the Superleague as "the next one down from Formula One". The cars look like F1 cars and can travel at 200mph.

Atech Reid was formed for the 2010 season as a merger of two teams which had competed separately in 2009.

Mr Reid said a chance encounter with Tim Williams, chief executive at the Welsh Automotive Forum, helped him realise there may be help available for the team to relocate.

He said: "I still live in Monmouth and travelling to and from Silverstone [in Northamptonshire] was becoming a chore.

"Once I saw the opportunity of moving back and bringing the whole team back down to Wales, it was an easy decision to make.

"Logistics for us isn't an issue. We have Cardiff airport, Bristol airport and the trucks, once they hit the motorways go straight to the ferries. It's quite simple."

He said the team has sourced suppliers in and around Cardiff for equipment and supplies.

The team also has six students on work experience from Swansea Metropolitan University.

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones, who is transport and economy minister, said he was pleased the assembly government was able to support the firm setting up headquarters in Wales.

He said: "It sends out a strong clear message that Wales is a good place to do business and a location where engineering and education in motorsport and automotive engineering go hand-in-hand providing industry with the relevant skills and expertise they need."

Tim Williams said: "The Welsh Automotive Forum has been working with Atech Reid to ensure a successful investment in Wales and help them build their university and supplier relationships.

"We are pleased to have worked with the Welsh Assembly Government to also secure financial support for the move."