BRATT PLEASED WITH WORKMANLIKE OULTON PARK TEST Oulton Park Island Circuit, the scene of Will Bratt's maiden Formula Renault UK victory, hosted the final test of the official pre-season today with the Adderbury teenager making the most of the ...
BRATT PLEASED WITH WORKMANLIKE OULTON PARK TEST
Oulton Park Island Circuit, the scene of Will Bratt's maiden Formula Renault UK victory, hosted the final test of the official pre-season today with the Adderbury teenager making the most of the seven hours of track time available to him ahead of the championship curtain-raiser just 10 days from now.
The 18-year-old, who has shown promising pace throughout the pre-season, took the opportunity to concentrate on set-up work for his Apotex Scorpio Motorsport car during today's test outing but, even so, he still ended the day inside the top 10 with a best lap time of 1m 19.050 seconds (101.374mph).
During the morning session Will's quickest time of 1m 19.406 seconds (100.919mph) was good enough to place him seventh fastest on the timesheets, just half a second shy of the outright pace.
But rather than chase a top four time during the afternoon, team and driver made the wise decision to concentrate on set-up work with the new season now mere days away.
"We stuck to our own programme today and made some very good progress with the set-up of the car", explained Will, "The car was very nicely balanced this afternoon and if we had used new tyres I'm sure we would have been within a few 10ths of a second of the front-runners.
"There aren't any points on offer for being quickest in testing though so rather than get caught up trying to chase an out-and-out quick time and waste tyres, we decided the best idea would be to do as much work on the car as possible which will hopefully pay dividends throughout the season."
With today's visit to Oulton Park marking the end of official pre-season testing, there is now little more than a week to go until the long-awaited opening two rounds of the 2007 Formula Renault UK Championship at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit in Kent.
Having recorded top eight and top six finishes at the 1.2-mile layout during rounds one and two of the 2006 season respectively, Will is confident the progress he and Loughborough-based Apotex Scorpio has made throughout official testing will ensure they're in good shape for the season-opening event next weekend, 31st March/1st April.
"We're really looking forward to the new season and I can't wait to be back racing again", said Will, "Testing has gone well for us and we've completed a lot of valuable set-up work so I'm confident the car will be good when we arrive at Brands Hatch next week.
"Obviously, I want to win and that'll be the aim but we're realistic and know it's going to be a very competitive year. If I can start the season with a podium result I'll be happy as it would be a great platform to build on."
Will, who was the BRSCC T-Car Champion in 2004, ended last year's Formula Renault UK Championship a highly creditable eighth overall in the driver standings with a brace of top four results, a podium finish at Donington Park and, of course, his memorable race win at Oulton Park all particular highlights.