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Richard Hawken ‘shocked and surprised’ to be dropped

Former Infiniti driver Richard Hawken has said he is “shocked and surprised” to have been dropped by the Infiniti Support Our Paras British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) team in favour of Martin Donnelly.

Hawken, who only contested the previous round at Donington Park after his car was not ready in time for the first meeting of the season, claims he had been left in the dark regarding his replacement this weekend.

Issuing a short statement on Facebook, Hawken claims his team denied that he was being replaced, even in the week leading up to the Thruxton event.

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“I was shocked and surprised to learn from a fan on Facebook earlier that I am being replaced as a driver for the remainder of the 2015 BTCC season,” said Hawken. “Having been made aware of rumours earlier this week, they were vehemently denied by the team, yet here we are with a change of driver.

“To say I am disappointed and disillusioned by the unprofessional, dishonourable manner in which this has been handled, is an understatement. For those who know me, you’ll be aware of how much time and effort I dedicated to building this. The next one however will be bigger and better!

“I have been advised to make no further comments on the situation at this stage.”

Hawken’s replacement at Thruton is former Formula 1 driver Martin Donnelly. The 51-year-old lines up alongside the other Infiniti Q50 of Derek Palmer Jr.

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