Home Formula 3GB3 F1600 champion Nick Gilkes to GB3 with Hillspeed

F1600 champion Nick Gilkes to GB3 with Hillspeed

by Ida Wood

Toyo Tires F1600 champion Nick Gilkes will move into slicks-and-wings single-seaters this year by joining Hillspeed in GB3.

The 16-year-old, who also won Quebec’s Formula Tour 1600 series last year before reaching the Formula Ford Festival semi-final and coming 20th in the Walter Hayes Trophy for Kevin Mills Racing, is the younger brother of former W Series racer Megan.

After the WHT at Silverstone last November, Gilkes did a two-day test at the circuit in one of Hillspeed’s 2021-spec GB3 cars. He impressed, and has now signed with the team to race the new Tatuus MSV-022 being introduced to the series.

“I am thrilled to be graduating into GB3 with Hillspeed, especially after a whirlwind season this past year,” said Gilkes.

“I had dreams of winning in my first season in Canadian F1600, and felt a realistic goal was to score podiums, but to win 15 races in my rookie year was way more than I initially could have hoped for.”

Once Hillspeed takes delivery of the new halo-shod car, Gilkes will get to test it for the first time in February. Before the season begins he will also “be building my fitness levels, running a couple of races in the US, and doing a lot of sim work to ensure I can repay the faith that Richard [Ollerenshaw, team principal] and Morgan at Hillspeed, and my sponsors, have shown in me”.

Gilkes is Hillspeed’s first signing, with the team scaling up its efforts again in GB3 after competing part-time last year with FFord Festival winner Jonathan Browne.

“We are absolutely delighted Nick will be racing with us in GB3 this season, he’s a great young driver with a lot of potential and over the last three years Hillspeed has built an excellent relationship with the Gilkes family,” said Ollerenshaw.

“Nick had a very strong first season in cars in F1600 in Canada, winning two titles and lots of races, and while the move to GB3 will be a big step we can see he clearly has the ability.”