Arden Motorsport’s Thomas Ikin is looking ahead with optimism to the his debut weekend in single seaters when the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost roars into life for 2021 at Thruxton next month (8-9 May).
The 17-year-old from Wirral is the latest member of Arden’s affiliated YRDA scheme to make the graduation into their F4 setup, having tested with the ‘Red Arrows’ consistently over the last 9 months in preparation for his first foray into Britain’s FIA Formula 4 series.
Ikin will partner Ginetta Junior graduate Zak Taylor at the Banbury squad for the season ahead, which features 30 action-packed races across 10 events at all of the UK’s most challenging and iconic venues. He will also be eligible to compete for Rookie Cup honours as a newcomer to car racing, as well as the overall championship.
For Ikin, the move to F4 represents an important step in his driver development, as well as an opportunity to draw together everything he’s learned under Arden’s mentorship since joining the fold back in 2019.
“Yeah, I’m looking forward to the season,” explained Ikin.
“We’ve done some testing since June last year so we’ve been building up to the season for a while, so we’re just starting to put into practice everything we’ve been learning since then.
“I’ve found it good, it’s much more technical than karting. You have to learn a lot more different driving styles – adapt to different conditions and so on. It’s good how much more attention you have to pay to everything that’s going on.”
This season’s grid is looking as competitive as ever, with 16 of the world’s rising stars spread out across six highly-professional racing teams, including Ikin’s Arden squad.
The prospect of going up against the best emerging talents in his age group, however, is an exciting one in Ikin’s eyes, as he looks ahead to the challenge with enthusiasm.
“There’s obviously a mix of everyone coming from different things, second year drivers, karters, people coming from all different things and it looks like it’ll be a good field and yeah I, I look forward to racing against them!”
As for many drivers taking their first steps on the FIA Single Seater pyramid with British F4, Ikin’s ultimate objective is to reach F1, as other Arden alumni have in the past.
In the short-term, however, the Brit is just taking it one step at a time.
“Right now we’re just focusing on the season ahead. Obviously, everyone’s dream is to be in Formula 1, and I’d love to be there one day but right now we’re just focusing on one year at a time and however well we do this year will depend on what we do next year, and so on.”
The high-speed Thruxton circuit in Hampshire hosts the season-opening triple-header on the BTCC support package over the weekend of 8-9 May.