Tom was to be back at the infamous Brands Hatch GP circuit for the first time in 4 years. He took the pre weekend test in his stride and put in some very strong laps to lay a baseline for the weekend ahead.
Confident ahead of qualifying, Tom quickly showed his pace at the start of the session going over 1.5 secs clear of the rest of the field. With track temperature rising, Tom's treaded Hankook tyres were starting to get too hot forcing Tom to come into the pits. A quick change on the car meant Tom was back out although dropping out of top spot by 0.08s. As Tom went back out he was to find a little bit of bad luck as he struggled to find a gap in the traffic of faster Radical SR3s. As he found a good gap, Tom put in a blinding first two sectors putting him on course for Pole position. As he dropped down the hill towards the famous Hawthorne's corner, the red flag came out ending the session prematurely and putting Tom in P2 on the grid for all three races.
Race 1 was to be shortened due to a stoppage that day, from 30mins down to 20mins.
Right off the start Tom was eager to jump ahead of the leader, doing exactly that. Some confusion was to be had as a change of speed from the pole man ensued meaning Tom had a great getaway. From there on, Tom controlled the race from the front. There were multiple safety cars, which meant there were to be only 5 clean laps of racing but Tom, as calm as ever managed the race perfectly taking home the team's 2nd win of the season. Unfortunately after the race, the stewards deemed Tom to have been in front of the pole man as the race started which results in a 10 sec penalty. This would drop Tom all the way down to P6 in class.
Hoping to have a better day on Sunday, Race 2 was to be one of Tom's best races of the season so far. Again starting from P2 Tom dived to the inside right off the start, showing tenacity and will power despite the disappointment on Saturday. On lap 3, a slower SR3 was caught out by the leader. Tom had a great run on him but was just pushed onto the grass. Lap 4 came and Tom was as hungry as ever. Into Surtees, Tom made a dive up the inside from a long way back. This meant the leader went defensive so Tom was able to get a great run out and take the lead away. For the rest of the race Tom managed to keep a gap of around 1 sec so that he was out of range for attack. As the clock hit zero Tom came across the line to win again in style; another brilliant drive!
The final race of the weekend was 40 mins long (due to the loss of race distance in Race 1). This race was classed as the endurance race, meaning that there was to be a mandatory pit stop of 45 secs. As the flag dropped off the start Tom maintained position in P2. Unfortunately, a crash on lap 2 meant that there was to be a safety car for nearly 15 mins of the race. As the safety car came in the pit window opened and Tom came in for his mandatory pit stop straight away. A near perfect stop meant that Tom was once again in the driving seat for the race victory. As all of the other cars made their stops, Tom gained the lead and never looked back for the final 20 mins of the race. A huge amount of consistent laps put Tom comfortably in front of the rest of the pack, cruising to victory at the end of the race.
Tom's comments "what a weekend! I'm so proud of the team for all their hard work and long hours they put into this project. I think people forget that I have a team of students running the car and to be beating very experienced outfits is a real testament to them. A huge thanks to my new partner ARX Security, a hugely successful first weekend with them on the car and hopefully many more to come".
Tom's next race is 20/21st May at Snetterton 300 running alongside the British Touring car package. Catch him LIVE on ITV and on You Tube.