Nic Hamilton reflects on his first day in the BTCC

Nic Hamilton – brother of Formula 1 World Champion Lewis – has completed a solid first day in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Croft.

The driver clocked more than 50 laps during the course of the day, improving his lap time in every session. Below is a summary of his times, laps completed, plus quotes from the man himself…

Free Practice 1
Laps Completed: 20
Fastest Lap Time: 1:29.839s

“It was mission accomplished in terms of achieving what we wanted to. That is the longest I’ve spent in the car and it was all about doing as many laps as we could. It’s only the fifth time I’ve been in the car and the first time I have been here for four years. It’s all about learning this weekend – the results aren’t important.

“I don’t feel I have anything to prove this weekend as being here is an achievement in itself and it’s all about developing as a driver. This is a big test session and if I’m last in every race then so be it. It’s more important for me to learn as much as I can rather than push too hard and end up in the gravel.”

Free Practice 2
Laps Completed: 18
Fastest Lap Time: 1:28.989s

“You always feel more comfortable the more you drive a car, and now it’s all about getting more confidence behind the wheel. In my head, I want to go faster, but I’m still learning where to push and where to brake that little bit later. That is something that will come with time.

“I know that I’m not driving to my full potential and that there is more to come from me, and also from the car. It isn’t quite where I want it to be at the moment but we’ll make some changes for qualifying and see if we can get a bit quicker again.”

Laps Completed: 13
Fastest Lap Time: 1:28.026s

“I didn’t set myself any real targets for today and just wanted to get on with it and drive. I think I’ve made some good progress and improved a lot, so I’m pretty happy in terms of the amount of time I’ve found. At the same time I’m also a bit disappointed that I  wasn’t quicker in qualifying as the data shows I was up by a second and then I got blocked into the complex so I had the potential to be ahead of some of the guys who’ve been racing all season – and to be ahead of them on merit. Unfortunatley that means some people will look at the time sheets and think I was just at the back when the reality is that I had the pace to be more in the mix.

“I’ve gained a lot more confidence in the car over the course of today, particularly in the quicker parts of the circuit which is where we made up some of our time. The team has done a mega job and now I want to get three finishes in the races and try to learn more tomorrow.”

AmDTuning Team Principal Shaun Hollamby was also delighted with Hamilton’s debut day in the BTCC, saying:

“We’re very pleased with the way Nicolas has performed and in a way, it’s good that he is disappointed at the fact he didn’t get more from qualifying as it shows the progress he’s made. If he’d managed to get his final lap in, he’d have been around 25th and right where we hoped he would be. He’s done a good job, stayed out of trouble and hasn’t made any mistakes.”


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