Fabrizio Giovanardi will join Tom Chilton in Vauxhall's British Touring Car Championship squad for 2006.

The Italian just missed out to Andy Priaulx in 2005's World Championship and was left without a drive after Alfa Romeo pulled out of the series.

Giovanardi agreed to join Vauxhall after former Alfa Romeo driver James Thompson rejected a return to Vauxhall and opted to move to Seat.

Giovanardi was reported as saying that the 2006 season will be a new challenge, with a very succesful team, and that he was looking foward to the experience.

Vauxhall will again race its Astra Sport Hatch model that made its debut in 2005 as a replacement for the previously dominant Astra Coupe.

The car won eight times in the hands of Yvan Muller and Colin Turkington and clinched Vauxhall a fifth consecutive manufacturers' crown.

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