Hungaroring: Nico Verdonk race report

Hungaroring, Budapest. Lap distance: 4.384km Race: 35 laps - 153.440km Having taken his best qualifying position in his short F3000 career to date, young Belgian rookie Nico Verdonck was been penalized after he, like two other drivers, was...

Hungaroring, Budapest. Lap distance: 4.384km Race: 35 laps - 153.440km

Having taken his best qualifying position in his short F3000 career to date, young Belgian rookie Nico Verdonck was been penalized after he, like two other drivers, was judged to have overtaken under yellow flags in friday's qualifying session. Jose Maria Lopez, Mathias Lauda and Nico Verdonck all lost their fastest lap times, and where demoted on the grid for race 8th on the Hungarian track.

Treacherous wet conditions greeted the F3000 grid as it formed up for Round Eight of the championship. Following a deluge on the grid, the decision was made to start the race under the Safety Car, so the pack slithered off the line in qualifying order.

Having never driven a race in an F3000 car in the wet before, Nico was cautious in the initial stages but soon settled down into the race.

"It's a shame I couldn't start the race from 12th, Nico said, and although I never participated in a wetrace with a F3000 car before everything whent very well.

"I was producing even faster laptimes than Jeffrey VH, who is a very good driver in the wet. When I went into the pits to change onto dry weather tyres and, as the order on the circuit began to stabilise again, I found myself in 12th position.At the beginning of this weekend it was really very promising, and I am very sure that I could have collected today some points if it wasn't for that penalty.

"This is really very disappointing, but the team gave me a very good car both on the dry and the wet and I still take away a lot of good things from this race and look forward to our next outing at Spa Francorchamps, my home grand prix, in two weeks time."

-fvh-

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Series F3000