Lee Holdsworth and Tickford Racing have confirmed their split for the upcoming Supercars Championship season.
The anticipated news comes as a result of Tickford being unable to secure a fourth Racing Entitlement Contract due to Phil Munday selling his REC to Brad Jones Racing for 2021.
It has forced the squad to scale back its operations to just three Mustangs, driven by Cam Waters, Jack Le Brocq and James Courtney.
Tickford had tried to purchase or lease a fourth REC for the 2021 season but was met with resistance by rival teams who had the final say on whether to allow the team another entry.
Still, even if a fourth REC had been secured, Super2 champion Thomas Randle was understood to have priority to the vacant seat.
Holdsworth’s brief two-year stint at the Ford outfit climaxed with three podiums and a provisional pole in last year’s Bathurst 1000 qualifying.
“We are very grateful to have worked with Lee the past two seasons and are equally saddened to confirm we will not be racing together in 2021.” said Tickford Racing CEO Tim Edwards.
“Along with his ability behind the wheel, Lee’s been one of the most well-liked people in our garage and the pitlane. Our crew, sponsors, and members have only good things to say about him, and we’ll certainly miss having him in the garage and workshop in 2021.
“We wish Lee all the best for the year to come, and look forward to seeing him at the track as a friend in the near future.”
Holdsworth is still expected to land a full-time gig in either TCR Australia or the Porsche Carrera Cup this year. He will also be a highly valuable co-driver for the Bathurst 1000 next year.
Only two full-time seats are yet to have a driver contracted to them. The first is at Kelly Racing and is expected to be filled by David Reynolds. The other is at Team Sydney – with Kiwi racer Chris Pither the leading candidate.