Sunday was certainly a day full of action to finish off the year in the Euroformula Open Championship.
Qualifying started well with me setting a time good enough to be in P2 after the first stint on used tyres as we elected to save a set of new for the race. It is essential to stay with a group here so that you can manage a tow to be able to set a lap time, but we took a gamble to stay out a lap longer than everyone else as my first two sector times were strong in that lap. I finished the lap well but that meant I had to hurry back to the pits and the team had to perform a very quick pit stop to ensure that I wouldn’t be left stranded for the second run. The team made a fantastic change and I was able to rejoin with the others.
On the second set we were looking very good to have a shot a pole for quite some time, and in the end managed a really good P6. Unfortunately on my quickest lap I actually had to pass someone through the final corner. This actually disadvantged me as it cost time, but it also put me on the dirty part of the circuit and I ran wide through turn 11, the Parabolica. As a result I was penalised, with the penalty being the deletion of not only that lap, but also my second fastest lap which in the end put me in P10 on the grid for the race.
In the race I got away to a good start but the car in front of me stalled. I just managed to avoid it which was very fortunate. Through lap one I then managed to gain another position to be in P8.
Over the next few laps I forced my way up to P7 before attempting another move up the inside into turn 1. I made this move, but then was held on the outside of the exit of the chicane forcing my outside wheels into the gravel. The loss of momentum meant I lost three places to move down to P10, however was still in the lead chain.
Having moved up to P8, there was then a horrific accident in front of me. Christian Hahn ran wide at Lesmo 2, and then speared across the circuit into Jack Doohan who was then sent into multiple rolls. I am very glad that both drivers are fine.
This put me into P6, and the safety car was out with the restart leaving a 2 lap race to the finish. I held my position at the restart and was there with half a lap to go. On the entry of the final chicane, the driver behind me made a move which I held out, but unfortunately for me he hit me on the exit sending me through the gravel off the track. I managed to catch the car, and hold on to finish in the points in tenth place.
Overall it was a weekend where we have really strong pace. Yes, it didn’t go out way, but I am really pleased with my racing this weekend, and the team have been so strong and given me a very fast car the whole week.
Thank you as always to all my amazing sponsors Lazersafe, High Energy Service, Online Logistics Solutions, The Wealth Designers, Edith Cowan University, Grand Toyota, Fullworks Firesafety, Inspired Insurance Services, Signarama, Rvend, Walker Wayland, F45 Hillary’s and Trizone.
Thank you to my team of Investors behind my racing that give me this incredible opportunity to pursue my ambitions.
Finally, thank you to all the team at Fortec Motorsport for everything they have done for me, and all that they have developed in me over the past two and a bit years. I will never forget it.
Now it’s up to Switzerland to meet with Jenzer Motorsport and to prepare for the FIA International F3 testing in Valencia next week!