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Greg Miles, Twitter: @greg_KOS_sport
Monday, July 16, 2012
West Malling driver in action at Croft next weekend.
Laura Tillett is itching to get back to racing action in the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship which heads to Croft this weekend.
After being involved in a massive, car-wrecking 120mph accident during qualifying for rounds six and seven at the ultra-fast Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire last month, the 21-year-old from unsurprisingly had to miss the races and also spend the night in hospital as a precautionary measure.
Although the heavy, rearward impact with the barriers – caused by coolant deposited on the track by another car – did leave Tillett with a sore head and neck, she was otherwise thankfully unharmed as the FIA-approved break-away design of her Tatuus FR 2.0 chassis did its job.
Frustrated to have been forced to miss the Thruxton races and more determined than ever to be back in the car, the Fortec Motorsports driver has been working unbelievably hard on her fitness in preparation for the resumption of the 2012 championship next weekend in the North East.
“It never crossed my mind not to get back in the car after Thruxton”, she said, “It was a huge crash, there wasn’t much left of the car to salvage, but all I kept thinking about was when I could be back on track. I was really annoyed I couldn’t race.
“When I was taken to hospital they had to cut my race suit off so it’ll be a completely fresh start at Croft – a new race suit, new helmet and a new car.
“I’m fighting fit, I’m back stronger than before and I’m more determined than ever to get out there and do well. The team has done an amazing job with the car, there wasn’t much more than a few nuts and bolts left over when all the broken bits had been taken away, so massive thanks to them.”
While Tillett hasn’t yet had the opportunity to test her newly rebuilt Formula Renault, the TILLETT Racing Seats, ET Fashions, Puma Motorsport and Point Racing-backed driver has been sharpening her racecraft and skills with a couple of outings in karts – the most recent being the Henry Surtees Foundation charity race.
The Caterham Motorsport ambassador has experienced Croft previously during a test with Fortec, prior to the start of her maiden season in cars, and the outing went well. Therefore, Tillett has high hopes of bouncing back with her best weekend of the season so far just a few days from now.
“I was a proper rookie when I tested at Croft before the season but it went quite well, we made good improvements during the day,” she said, “It’s not one of my favourite tracks but I am feeling confident and I’m just so excited to be back racing - I can’t wait to get back out there.”
Although competitors won’t have the chance to test at Croft prior to this weekend’s race meeting, there will be a short 15-minute practice session on Saturday, 21st July, ahead of the two qualifying sessions at 12.10pm and 2.40pm.
Rounds eight and nine will then follow on Sunday, 22nd July, at 1.10pm and 4.30pm.