Mortara maintains F3 Euroseries lead Signature team driver Edoardo Mortara has endured a challenging weekend at the fifth round of the Formula 3 Euroseries, in Zandvoort. The French-Italian came to the Dutch circuit holding a 15-point lead in...
Mortara maintains F3 Euroseries lead
Signature team driver Edoardo Mortara has endured a challenging weekend at the fifth round of the Formula 3 Euroseries, in Zandvoort.
The French-Italian came to the Dutch circuit holding a 15-point lead in the championship, but a tricky qualifying session compromised his weekend. Despite the fact that he was forced to start near the back of the grid, and was the victim of a couple of racing incidents, he maintained his hard-earned lead of the championship by nine points.
Zandvoort, on the coast north of Amsterdam, is renowned as a highly-technical track - thanks to several complex corners such as the Tarzan bend - that formerly hosted the Dutch Grand Prix. Another peculiarity of the seaside track is that sand is often blown onto the surface, making the levels of grip quite variable.
Although Edoardo managed to set some impressive individual sector times, he was not able to string them together during the all-important qualifying session and ended up 15th on the grid for race one. With a low grid position, his best chance was to try and work his way up the field in order to finish eighth and so start from pole position, under the F3 Euroseries regulations.
In order for this audacious strategy to work, Edoardo would have to pass as many cars as possible. This was all going to plan and the Volkswagen-backed driver was up to 10th overall, when he went off as the result of halfway through the race. Despite this setback Edoardo did not lose his concentration, and instead applied himself to doing the best job possible in the second race - from which he started near the back of the grid.
Race two was unfortunately a similar story. Edoardo accidentally tangled with another competitor at the first corner and then had to pit for a new rear tyre, which compromised the rest of his race.
"It wasn't a good weekend for us, but we can't always have it our way," said Edoardo - who had taken six podiums from eight races up until Zandvoort. "During qualifying I didn't quite manage to string all the sectors together as I would have wished, and the field was so competitive that even a small time loss meant the difference between starting at the front or the back of the grid. For our strategy to work I had no choice but to push as hard as I could during race one, in order to try and reach eighth, taking the sort of risks that I would not normally take. When you are operating in that zone, accidents can happen - and unfortunately that is exactly what occurred in both races. That's life sometimes: we did not panic, which really underlines the strength in depth of the Signature team and Volkswagen. The most important thing is that we have maintained the lead of the championship, which was our primary objective, and we look forward to having a much better weekend at the next race meeting."