Czechs leave New Zealand without points Tomas Enge and the Czech team went through a character building weekend at Taupo where they fought more with the car than with competitors. Enge did not see the flag in the sprint and finished 12th in the...
Czechs leave New Zealand without points
Tomas Enge and the Czech team went through a character building weekend at Taupo where they fought more with the car than with competitors. Enge did not see the flag in the sprint and finished 12th in the feature race. New Zealand's Taupo brought action filled races and home crowds were ecstatic after their hero Johny Reid won the sprint race! The Czech team had a little reason to celebrate as they endured perhaps the most difficult weekend up to date.
The team took a calculated risk after qualifying disaster and set up the car in completely different way. The sprint race was filled with incidents and Enge found himself close to the points even though the car was again difficult to drive. Any hopes were dashed when he clashed with Lebanon's car at turn 12 with a little bit over three laps to go.
The feature race followed a similar pattern. Full fuel tank only highlighted problems over the bumps and Enge was very busy with steering wheel to keep it on the track. He managed to stay out of trouble and moved up from the 20th position on the grid. The Czechs lost precious second at the mandatory first stop. The second stop was a better one but points were out of reach. Enge crossed the line 12th. The Czech team are with 10 points 14th in the standings.
Tomas Enge: "We were quite close to the points in the end of the day but it was more up to problems of other competitors than thanks to our improved performance. We completely changed the car after qualifying but it did not cure our problem over the bumps. The car was bottoming a lot and I was fighting like mad to keep it on the track. I have not blistered my hands that much since my F3000 time! The car felt a bit better in the sprint but when we put in a lot of fuel for the feature race it was terrible. Also our first stop was not smooth and we lost few positions. As far as the collision in the sprint is concerned, I agree with the stewards that it was a racing incident. He suddenly slowed in the middle of the corner and I was not able to avoid. All in all, it was not our weekend and we have to move on. I certainly hope for better weekend at Daytona next week."
Antonin Charouz, Seat holder: "What can I say... Of course, we will analyze data and will learn from it. However, generally speaking the best thing is to forget this weekend and focus on next races."