HYLKEMA CONFIDENT OF ROCKINGHAM PODIUM PUSH Thomas Hylkema heads to Rockingham International Super Sports Car Circuit next weekend, 24th/25th April, hoping to challenge for his first podium finish of the year during the second event of the 2010...
HYLKEMA CONFIDENT OF ROCKINGHAM PODIUM PUSH
Thomas Hylkema heads to Rockingham International Super Sports Car Circuit next weekend, 24th/25th April, hoping to challenge for his first podium finish of the year during the second event of the 2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship.
After two incident-packed races at Thruxton a fortnight ago, the 21-year-old is currently placed equal 10th in the driver standings but he's aiming much higher at Rockingham -- the venue of his best main championship finish in 2009.
The Manor Competition racer was comfortably on the pace at Thruxton, lapping fifth fastest during the round two qualifying session, and only two luckless races prevented him from scoring more heavily at the season-opener.
Rockingham's races will mark the first time the Formula Renault UK competitors will have visited a track where they tested the new FR 2.0 car during the official pre-season and Thomas is confident that experience, coupled with his ever-improving speed, will result in a strong outing next weekend.
"I am quite confident looking ahead to Rockingham, we're back at a track for the first time where we actually tested the new car pre-season and my aim is to equal the best pace I showed at Thruxton", said the Delft-based driver, "If I am able to do that, and we don't have any bad luck, then I'm hopeful we can convert that pace into a podium.
"I like the heavy braking at Rockingham but it's a track where you're not really able to build too much momentum -- unlike Thruxton. It's very hard to set-up the car well, you have to compromise for the twisty middle section and the fast corners, but I know the team will do a great job."
Thomas added: "Last year at Rockingham we were really strong and I took my best finish of the season with a very competitive top six result. I know we can be quick there again this year and the top three is definitely my aim. If I can equal my pace from last year, I'll be happy, but I want a podium and that's what I'll be pushing for."
Thomas' first action of the Rockingham weekend will come during pre-event practice on Friday, 23rd April, with qualifying taking place at 10.15 and 14.45 on Saturday, 24th April. Rounds three and four will then follow at 10.35 and 15.55 on Sunday, 25th April.
-source: thomas hylkema