DETERMINED HYLKEMA STRIVING FOR SILVERSTONE SUCCESS Silverstone National Circuit in Northamptonshire hosts a triple-header weekend of Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship action just a few days from now, 21st/22nd August, and it's where...
DETERMINED HYLKEMA STRIVING FOR SILVERSTONE SUCCESS
Silverstone National Circuit in Northamptonshire hosts a triple-header weekend of Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship action just a few days from now, 21st/22nd August, and it's where Dutch ace Thomas Hylkema plans to enjoy his first truly problem-free outing of the season.
Delivering consistently rapid pace and displaying ever-improving racecraft over the course of the six race meetings to have been held so far in 2010, the Manor Competition driver has unfortunately seen his campaign hampered by serious misfortune.
Undoubtedly a much-improved racer over the course of the last 12 to 18 months or so, 21-year-old Thomas clearly has what it takes to be a regular podium challenger in Formula Renault UK, as proven by his maiden pole position at Croft Circuit back in June.
With three races being contested at Silverstone -- the previously cancelled fifth round of the year having been rescheduled to take place at the Northamptonshire track -- the weekend provides an ideal opportunity for Thomas to secure a substantial points haul as he strives to make a return into the coveted championship top 10.
"Snetterton was a hard weekend, we had quite a bit of bad luck again unfortunately but we definitely have a good base to start from at Silverstone", he said, "We were strong there during the pre-season test and especially on old tyres where we were in the top three. I know we have more time to find on new tyres but hopefully we can work on that during the Friday practice sessions.
"We've been strong all year really, I've definitely improved as a driver and the team does a fantastic job each weekend. There's no doubt we've had more than our fair share of bad luck and incidents but you have to stay positive and focus, we showed at Croft what we are capable of with the pole position and that's the level of performance I'm aiming to repeat. We definitely have the potential."
Now into the second half of his third season of race action in the UK, the Club Car and TORO-backed driver from Delft is hungry to enjoy some deserved success over the course of the last four meetings of the campaign in a championship he views as the strongest and most competitive of its kind.
Thomas added: "I always say Formula Renault UK is the toughest championship in single-seater racing. You have 12 or 13 guys who all have the potential to do really well and racing against such a high level of competition can only serve you well for later years. I have learnt so much by racing in England, we all want more success but the work we're doing now is an investment for the future."
As ever, pre-event practice will take place at Silverstone on Friday, 20th August, with qualifying following on Saturday, 21st August, at 09.00 and 14.00. The first of the weekend's 22-lap encounters will be held at 17.25 on Saturday afternoon with the second and third races scheduled for Sunday, 22nd August, at 09.30 and 15.15 respectively.
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship standings (after Rd12): 13th Thomas Hylkema, 98pts