OFFICIAL TESTING STARTS STRONGLY FOR DUTCH STAR HYLKEMA Thomas Hylkema made an impressively strong start to the official Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship pre-season at Brands Hatch this week, the 21-year-old Dutchman ending the first ...
OFFICIAL TESTING STARTS STRONGLY FOR DUTCH STAR HYLKEMA
Thomas Hylkema made an impressively strong start to the official Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship pre-season at Brands Hatch this week, the 21-year-old Dutchman ending the first collective test of the year an excellent eighth fastest overall.
Adapting well to the demands of the brand new 2010 FR 2.0 car, which features more power, increased aerodynamic grip and sequential, steering-wheel mounted paddle-shift gear change, the Manor Competition driver set a quickest lap of 43.439 seconds (99.33mph) on Wednesday, 3rd March.
Ending the two-day test outing at the 1.2-mile Kent track just 0.471 seconds shy of the top of the times, Thomas was justly happy with his performance and is keen to continue the progression over the next few weeks ahead of the championship curtain-raiser on 3rd/4th April.
"Wednesday was a really good day for me, I've worked very hard during this test to keep improving and to try and get the most from the car", said the TORO and Club Car backed racer, "It's taking time to adapt to the new car and you need a totally different approach compared to last year's Renault. This car has lots of aero so it grips-up a lot more through fast corners and carries more speed.
"On old tyres we were pretty competitive and when we ran new boots for the last five minutes of the final session I was able to produce a good time with the pressure on. We could have been quicker but, in the end, I'm happy with the overall result. As usual, the guys at Manor are doing a fantastic job and we're all looking forward to getting back on track next week."
The Aerospace Engineering student, who lives in Delft, started the first official test day of the pre-season on Tuesday, 2nd March, with a time of 44.687 seconds (96.56mph) before dipping below the 44 second barrier during session two thanks to a lap of 43.906 seconds (98.27mph).
Improving further on the second morning, producing a lap of 43.884 seconds (98.32mph), Thomas then sliced over four 10ths of a second off his previous best in the final session of the week to lap in 43.439 seconds (99.33mph) with his last run.
Silverstone National Circuit in Northamptonshire is the next venue on the 2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK pre-season calendar with a one-day test taking place next Tuesday, 9th March.
-source: thomas hylkema