Aaron Mason scored four VW Cup race wins in 2011. Photo:

Aaron Mason, a third-place finisher in the APR Volkswagen Racing Cup twice in the last three years, is to return to the championship in 2012 with a three-car assault on the title.

The 32-year-old from Doncaster expects to start the season at the wheel of an AWM Motor Sport Golf GTI similar to that which netted him four race victories in 2011, but says he could switch to a Scirocco.

“There are a few options open to us,” says building company MD Mason, “and one of them is to build a completely new car. There are a number of Sciroccos coming in and it may prove to be the car to beat.

“I am certainly going to go for another shot at the championship and I am hoping that it’s going to be a good, close and competitive season – it would be nice to win it after a good battle with some strong competitors.”

Mason came into the series as a racing rookie in 2009 and enjoyed immediate success, taking championship third. He claimed his first race wins in 2010, and won at Snetterton, Brands Hatch, Donington Park and Silverstone last season on his way to third in the title race once again.

“What cost me the championship last year was a sticking rear brake at Oulton Park, and then another brake problem at Zandvoort, which caused me to go off.” Despite these mishaps Mason finished and scored in every round, but the greater consistency of Steve Chaplin and James Walker helped them out-point the Yorkshireman.

Mason’s team-mates in the AWM squad will be motorsport newcomer Simon Tomlinson and experienced saloons racer Stewart Lines, who has Clio Cup, SEAT Challenge and Mini Challenge experience and who took part in the final two meetings of the 2011 Volkswagen Racing Cup season; both will drive Golf GTIs. Mason says AWM may yet field a fourth car.

The APR Volkswagen Racing Cup grid is shaping up to be as large and competitive as ever. KPM Racing has announced plans to field a six-car team, including Sciroccos for James Walker and Craig Milner, while 2011’s top rookie, Tom Wilson, is set to return in a two-car team with his father, Jonathan, at the wheel of a Scirocco.

The APR Volkswagen Racing Cup was established in the UK in 2000 and is entering its 13th season as the sole saloon-racing supporting event to British GT and British F3. This year the championship will also race at Brands Hatch alongside the German touring car championship and at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium as a supporting event to the 25-hour Fun Cup.

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