COOK MOVES INTO BRDC FORMULA 4 FOR WINTER SERIES CAMPAIGN
British Racing Drivers’ Club ‘Rising Star’ Jake Cook will switch to the BRDC Formula 4 Championship for the upcoming Winter Series, which begins at Snetterton in Norfolk on 9th/10th November, after signing a deal with race-winning team Hillspeed.
Having competed with the Hathersage-based squad in the Protyre Formula Renault Championship this year, where he concluded his first season of ‘slicks and wings’ competition fifth overall with six podiums to his credit, the 20-year-old is relishing the new challenge and focused on a title bid.
“I hope we’ll be challenging for the championship, it’s never taken me too long to get on the pace in anything before – I wouldn’t be doing the F4 Winter Series if I didn’t think I could win it”, said the Rotherham youngster, “I did test the car at the recent sampler day, I had quite a lot of time in it but it was wet. I really enjoyed it, though, the car seemed good.
“There’s a lot of grip from the car, as I only ran in the wet I’m not sure if that’s mainly the aero or the tyres, but it is an easy car to drive – you can see why so many of the karters have gone well in F4 this year. The gearbox is good, the paddle-shift is new to me, and it is probably a bit more physical as the steering is heavier than what I’ve been used to. That won’t be a problem though, it should be good.”
Cook, who away from the track studies Economics at Newcastle University, made the transition to single-seaters in 2010 in the ranks of British Formula Ford following a couple of years in the Ginetta Junior Championship.
Named the Racing Steps Foundation MSA (Motor Sports Association) Young Driver of the Year after a strong debut season in Formula Ford, Cook contested a part campaign in 2011 and then returned for a full title assault the following year – ending the season as Vice-Champion with a pair of wins and 12 further podiums. He also competed in the Formula Ford EuroCup where he became a race winner.
Hillspeed, of course, is delighted to retain Cook’s services and although the BRDC F4 car will be new to him, the Yorkshireman is certain to go into the Winter Series as one of the genuine championship favourites according to team principal Richard Ollerenshaw.
“We’re all absolutely delighted Jake is staying with the team for his move into Formula 4, he’s a very talented driver and did a fantastic job in his first season with us in Protyre Formula Renault this year”, said the Hillspeed boss, “Our aim is to try and win the Winter Series title and we’re confident Jake will be one of the main contenders.
“Hillspeed obviously had a very strong season in F4 this year, ending the year as Vice-Champions with Seb [Morris] was tremendous and we proved we’ve got the car to win. We’re really looking forward to the Winter Series and also keen to hear from other drivers who would like to join our winning team.”
Snetterton 300 Circuit will host the opening four rounds of the BRDC Formula 4 Winter Series next weekend, 9th/10th November, with rounds five to eight following on 23rd/24th November at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit in Kent.