EVER-IMPROVING DIXON HEADS TO SNETTERTON HIGH IN CONFIDENCE James Dixon has his sights set on challenging for his maiden ELF Renault Clio Cup podium result at Snetterton in Norfolk next weekend, 7th/8th August, when the 2010 instalment of the ...
EVER-IMPROVING DIXON HEADS TO SNETTERTON HIGH IN CONFIDENCE
James Dixon has his sights set on challenging for his maiden ELF Renault Clio Cup podium result at Snetterton in Norfolk next weekend, 7th/8th August, when the 2010 instalment of the high-profile saloon car championship gets back underway following a lengthy summer sojourn.
Six weeks have passed since the previous rounds at Croft in North Yorkshire, an event which once again underlined the Kent 20-year-old's continual progress as he posted a season's best finish of seventh place during the second of the weekend's outings.
Although having only contested six races since switching to the Renault Clio Cup from the realms of single-seater competition, Stockbury-based James has managed to quickly get to grips with the change in driving style and is undoubtedly one of the category's most promising young racers.
"I can't wait to be back in the car next weekend", he commented, "Snetterton is a track I've always enjoyed, it's demanding and has a handful of very fast corners which I'm used to from my days in single-seaters. We had a really strong test run there back at the end of May so I know we have what it takes to be quick.
"The biggest aim is to step onto the podium at Snetterton but I still see the racing as a learning venture after only contesting three full events so far this year. I'm improving and learning more and more after each race weekend though and that can only produce better results."
Taking a brace of ninth place finishes on his front-wheel drive debut at Rockingham in April, the Candy Carriers and Weidmuller-backed racer was forced to miss the next two rounds at his home track, Brands Hatch. During the subsequent event at the demanding Oulton Park though he took a top eight result for the first time and then secured his best finish of the year so far at Croft.
Snetterton will mark only James' fourth full race meeting of the season but his confidence is sky high having been ultra-quick when his Total Control Racing team tested at the 1.95-mile circuit a couple of months ago. Not only did he post the second fastest time, he was within a mere 0.097 seconds of experienced team-mate Sam Tordoff.
He added: "The Snetterton test was fantastic for us, I'm feeling really confident for next weekend as the car was very well balanced and we managed to find a great set-up which really seems to suit my style. We know there's still time to find, and I have a huge amount to learn about front-wheel drive racing, but we're making fantastic progress and I'm really enjoying it. TCR is an amazing team.
"I'm starting to feel more at home with the car. It's a huge challenge to adapt from single-seaters as that's all I've ever raced before -- I've found heavy braking to be one of my biggest weaknesses due to the differences in downforce between a Formula Renault and a Clio. I'm enjoying every minute of Clios though and there's more potential to see a career path unfold which gives me a huge buzz."
Ahead of next weekend's action, the competitors will take part in two practice sessions at the East Anglian track on Friday, 6th August. Qualifying for rounds 11 and 12 of the 2010 ELF Renault Clio Cup season will get underway at 11.15 on Saturday, 7th August, with the first of the weekend's races following at approximately 16.35. On Sunday, 8th August, round 12 will commence at around 11.00.
Heading into the event, James is 14th overall in the championship standings but if he can continue the consistency he has shown so far he will undoubtedly be in a position to climb the points table quite significantly at Snetterton and close on the coveted top 10.