Total Control Racing begins its 2012 testing programme tomorrow, Tuesday,24th January, when talented female karter Laura Tillett makes her saloon cartrack debut in one of the Wednesbury team's AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK carsat Brands Hatch Indy Circuit.
The 20-year-old from West Malling, just 10 miles from the famous Kent track,has been competing in karts for the past nine years. Most famously, Lauraentered the record books in 2009 as the first British female racer tocompete in the premier class of the CIK-FIA World Karting Championship.
Having now chosen to call time on karting to instead focus on a graduationto car racing, at this stage no decisions have been made on whether shewishes to pursue a career in single-seaters - having tested both FormulaFord and Formula BMW machinery previously - or a future in saloon cars.
"This will be my first ever go in a Clio, so I'm really looking forward toit", said Laura, "I've still got a desire to race single-seaters but we needto look at all of the options as it's all down to sponsors. I've beenkarting for nine years so I can tell you everything about that. Being 20,I'm slightly behind some of the others who have moved up to cars already sothis is something I definitely need to do now."
Should Laura eventually sign a deal to compete in the AirAsia Renault ClioCup UK this year, she would be the first female to compete in theever-popular British Touring Car Championship support category since MelHealey in 2007.
Starting out seriously in the Super 1 British Formula JICA category (nowre-branded KF3) in 2005, Laura progressed into Formula ICA and remained atthat level through 2008 when the new KF2 branded class was launched.
Finishing a superb fifth in the MSA Kartmasters Grand Prix, she raced atWorld and European level in 2009 - making history along the way as the firstBritish female to compete in the top tier of karting in the WorldChampionship. From there, a successful run in Super KF in the Euro and WorldSeries in 2010 followed with Laura taking 11th place overall in the WSKEuropean Championship.
Continuing to race against the best on the globe in the CIK-FIA WorldChampionship last year, the Kent sensation also competed in the KF1 class ofthe WSK Euro Series. Having gained car experience testing in Formula Fordand Formula BMW, she was also fortunate enough to enjoy a day on theWilliams F1 Team race simulator at the Formula One squad's Oxfordshire baseback in November.
Looking ahead to Tuesday's test, TCR team principal Lee Brookes said: "We'redelighted to be able to give Laura her first test in a Clio, she's provenher talent in karts for a number of years now at the top level so we've gotno doubts she'll be able to adapt quickly. We're really looking forward toworking with her."