RADERMECKER TO MAKE FFORD FES­TI­VAL RE­TURN

Motor Sport News - - Racing News -

For­mer British Tour­ing Car Cham­pi­onship driver Vin­cent Radermecker will make a sur­prise re­turn to the For­mula Ford Fes­ti­val at Brands Hatch later this month.

The Bel­gian, now 51, twice com­peted in the event in the early 1990s and says he has “un­fin­ished busi­ness” af­ter tak­ing ninth in the fi­nal in ’91 and slid­ing off on a wet track in his semi-fi­nal in ’92.

He went on to com­pete in British For­mula 3, fin­ish­ing run­ner-up in ’94, be­fore switch­ing to tin-tops. He con­tested the BTCC in a works Volvo in ’99 and then moved to Vaux­hall in 2000, tak­ing a to­tal of five podi­ums.

“The story is that Geoffrey Ho­rion – a Bel­gian driver who did For­mula Ford a bit later than me and af­ter­wards did F3 and tour­ing car races in Bel­gium and stopped rac­ing nearly 10 years ago – he bought a Van Diemen RF91 and RF92 and he started a lit­tle team, Old Rac­ing School,” Radermecker told MN.

“He’s do­ing some his­toric rac­ing with For­mula Ford and he asked me if I was in­ter­ested. If it was a nor­mal track some­where I’m not sure but it was not pos­si­ble to say no [to the Fes­ti­val at Brands Hatch].

“I did two Fes­ti­vals – in 1991 I fin­ished ninth in the fi­nal and in ’92 I was run­ning sixth in the semi-fi­nal and I tried to im­prove my clas­si­fi­ca­tion but I had an off as I locked my brakes in the wet. So I have un­fin­ished busi­ness and I will try to im­prove on that.”

Radermecker went on to claim ti­tles in Bel­gian and Ger­man do­mes­tic se­ries and has more re­cently com­peted in TCR ma­chin­ery – in­clud­ing tak­ing three wins in TCR Benelux in 2016 – and in en­durance races.

This will be his first race in the UK since Bel­car vis­ited Don­ing­ton Park in 2007 and Radermecker is un­sure how he will com­pare to his Fes­ti­val ri­vals.

“I will do free prac­tice be­fore the week­end to re­mem­ber ev­ery­thing with the car and to try to im­prove the car and my­self,” he said. “Brands Hatch I know quite well and it will be very quickly in my me­mory. There is no pres­sure – I know the car will be very well pre­pared and they do it very pro­fes­sion­ally.”

Radermecker added that he had looked at mak­ing a re­turn to the BTCC over the years and, more re­cently, at com­pet­ing in TCR UK but the need to pay for a drive pre­vented this from hap­pen­ing.

“[With] TCR UK I did have some con­tact there but still needed to bring bud­get with it, which is not what I do,” he said.

Pho­tos: LAT, Jim Moir, Mick Walker, Steve Jones

Bel­gian raced in BTCC in 2000 Radermecker last raced in Bel­car in UK

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