Sometime Renault Clio Cup racer Nicolas Hamilton hopes to return to racing in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship next season.
The Briton, the younger brother of Mercedes F1 driver and 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton, revealed the plans via his personal website, announcing that his ambition is to become the first disabled athlete to compete in the BTCC. Hamilton has coped with cerebral palsy throughout his life and hopes to use his racing as a means of inspiring others.
“This year has been really tough, not being able to race following a promising start in the European Touring Car Cup in 2013, where I proved myself as a competitive driver in Europe regardless of my condition,” he wrote, “But that's just how racing goes.
“However, now I am looking ahead and, after months of deep thought in deciding what the best route for my career is, I am excited to announce my ambitions to become the first disabled athlete to compete in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship in 2015.
“I believe that, if you work hard enough and you want it enough, you can achieve anything. With my racing ambitions, I've always wanted to do it myself, independently. This is how I operate across every element of my life.
“Having raced in the Renault Clio Cup in 2011 and 2012, which supports the BTCC at each round, I have always been impressed by the professionalism and competitive spirit of the series and the fantastic support shown by its fans. The championship has been growing from strength to strength, attracting some of the world's best touring car drivers, making it, in my opinion, the top national motorsport championship today. The thought of competing in the championship is really exciting and I would love the challenge of competing at this level!”
Despite his limited racing experience, Hamilton is undaunted by the thought of testing himself in a series which, this year, sees no fewer than seven past champions trading paint.
“While I still feel I have a lot to learn in racing, I have always strived to push myself to achieve results and exceed my expectations, and I hope racing in the BTCC will prove just that,” he continued, “My main ambition is not just to compete, but to inspire others to strive for their goals and to follow their dreams, regardless of their situation. Anyone can 'Exceed Expectations' in one way or another and I hope to prove that when I compete against, not just able-bodied drivers, but the best touring car drivers in the UK.
“For me, my career is not just about me racing, but also about me helping others in showing them what is possible regardless of the industry, whether it be sport, business, or personal goals.”
As with many dreams at this time of year, however, Hamilton admits that there is still a long way to go before he can announce his place on the BTCC grid.
“There are still many hurdles ahead before I can confirm my plans, but I will be sure to keep you all updated in the following weeks and months,” he acknowledged, “Thank you to everyone who has continued to support me over the past three years - it really does mean a lot and I hope to be able to confirm in the coming months where you can all join me so we can inspire together.”