TOP SIX RETURN IN HYLKEMA'S SIGHTS FOR SILVERSTONE GP RACES Thomas Hylkema is relishing the prospect of a return to the home of British motorsport, Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit, next weekend, 18th/19th September, when the Formula Renault UK ...
TOP SIX RETURN IN HYLKEMA'S SIGHTS FOR SILVERSTONE GP RACES
Thomas Hylkema is relishing the prospect of a return to the home of British motorsport, Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit, next weekend, 18th/19th September, when the Formula Renault UK Championship makes its annual appearance on the World Series by Renault festival support package.
Marking the category's only race meeting of the year away from the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship tour, rounds 17 and 18 of the season are expected to attract a crowd of well over 100,000 spectators to make the event one of the largest of its kind in the UK -- second only to the FIA Formula One World Championship's British Grand Prix.
Having tested strongly at the full length Grand Prix Circuit earlier in the year, lapping eighth fastest on combined times, the 22-year-old from Delft in The Netherlands also achieved a top six race result on Silverstone's shorter National Circuit last month.
For that reason Thomas heads back to Northamptonshire high in confidence and determined to put the disappointment of the most recent race meeting at Knockhill in Scotland behind him. Although the year hasn't delivered the results he's wanted, the Manor Competition driver is now aiming to steer his Geothex, TORO and Club Car backed FR 2.0 to a consistently strong season conclusion.
"Our test at the GP track went well, we finished in the top eight overall which wasn't bad and I did enjoy driving the new layout -- it's quite interesting and I'm looking forward to being back there", said the Dutch racer, "We need a good weekend, especially after Knockhill which was disappointing, but I'm sure we can be back in and around the top six, that's a realistic aim."
Silverstone GP set to be family affair for Hylkema brothers Next weekend's action carries additional significance for Thomas as the event will be the first ever car race meeting where he and his brother Bart will be in action at the same venue -- the younger of the Hylkema siblings currently competes in the sister Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 Championship which is a regular support class on the World Series by Renault tour.
Although having raced karts against each other several years ago, the car racing careers of Thomas and Bart have never crossed paths until now and although they won't actually be racing each other at Silverstone, they will be on track together during the official pre-event test sessions.
Thomas said: "It's going to be a new adventure for both of us, we did test together in the winter but since we moved up from karting we've never been together on the same race weekend. In the test sessions Formula Renault UK and Eurocup will be on track at the same time so that will add an extra dimension. It'll be interesting to see what happens but I'll be focusing on my own job!"
Following two test sessions on Friday, 17th September, qualifying for rounds 17 and 18 of the 2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship is expected to take place at 16.15 on Saturday, 18th September. Both races will be contested on Sunday, 19th September, with the first beginning at 09.00 and the second scheduled to start at 17.30.
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship standings (after Rd16): 12th Thomas Hylkema, 145pts