Kent hails successful end of season test in Portugal

by Phil Kinch

Essex and Kent Motorsport’s Lewis Kent has spoken about his three-day end of year test at the Portimão circuit in Portugal’s Algarve, after competing in the first ever season of the TCR UK Series.

The test, which was organised by Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing, was extended to the brand’s customer teams. The young British driver found himself on track alongside the newly-crowned 2018 FIA World Touring Car Cup champion Gabriele Tarquini and 2019 WTCR drivers Nicky Catsburg, Augusto Farfus and Norbert Michelisz.

Kent spoke about his experience of working with some of the best touring car drivers in the world.

Lewis Kent tested his Essex and Kent Motorsport Hyundai alongside the BRC Racing WTCR squad at the Portimao circuit in Portugal. Credit: BRSCC / TCR UK Series

“It was great to chat to Gabriele, Nicky, Augusto and Norbert one-to-one as just another driver. I was a little unsure of the track, to begin with as I’d never been there before but they were all really helpful,” explained the Essex and Kent Motorsport driver.

“Nicky came over to me at one point and said he’d been running a stopwatch on me. He thought I was impressive and definitely have a real future in TCR competition.”

Kent started off the test by lapping the Portuguese circuit in times of around one minute and fifty-nine seconds. By the end of the test, his pace had improved to be just under half a second off the times of WTCR Champion Tarquini.

Kent has confirmed that he will be returning to the TCR UK Series in 2019. Credit: BRSCC / TCR UK Series

Kent explained about the chance to test with Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing ahead of his return to the TCR UK Series this season.

“You just can’t turn down an opportunity like that and Portimão was a fantastic track for the test as it has so many different types of corner. It was a once in a lifetime experience to be able to test with those guys and I learnt a lot from it,” explained the Hyundai driver.

“It was a real boost to my confidence at the end of the year and it should help boost my performance in TCR UK in 2019.”

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