hristopher Zanella: "Today was a difficult day for us, but despite that we were quick enough to fight for a points finish."
The first race day of the Spa F.Renault 3.5 round was a tough one for ISR. The team finished Race 1 just shy of the top ten with Christopher Zanella (in 11th place) while Sergey Sirotkin took the flag in P18 after enduring a difficult race.
Things weren't looking too good for the race, but Zanella did his best to beat the odds: his getaway was quick and his first laps were good, allowing him to climb to 12th place.
Then a contact with a fellow competitor that had nearly stalled in the Bus Stop chicane damaged his front wing, and as a consequence of that the Swiss driver started suffering from heavy understeer.
Despite that, Chris still had a good pace and managed to overtake Webb for P11, ending the race just 0.7 shy of a points finish.
Sirotkin was quick off the line too, but then he had to brake hard to avoid a slow starting rival and that dropped him to P22. Sergey pushed as hard as he could to fight back, but he couldn't do better than 18th place.
Christopher Zanella (Q - P15; R1 - P11): "Today was a difficult day for us, but despite that we were quick enough to fight for a points finish. I had a good feeling in the first laps and I made up some places, but then at the Bus Stop chicane Muller had an issue with his antistall system just in front of me and nearly stopped.
I turned my steering to full lock to avoid him, but I still clipped his car damaging the front wing. After that I had a lot of understeer, and so I couldn't push as much as I wanted. Anyway it's not too bad, we have a good potential for tomorrow if we will manage to put everything together".
Sergey Sirotkin (Q - P17; R1 - P18): "It was quite a frustrating day for me. Qualifying wasn't good, but I still hoped to recover in the race. My start was good but then, when 2nd gear was already engaged and I was at full throttle, I saw a slow car just ahead of me.
I slowed down as much as I could to avoid it but that cost me a lot both in terms of time and speed, and so the whole pack blasted past me. At that point the race was spoiled, I did my best but P18 was the best I could do".