In most forms of Motorsport, the first impression that a Driver can make on his or Her team, fans and sponsors needs to be a good one. A good first impression can be the difference between success and failure. To say that young South Australian...
In most forms of Motorsport, the first impression that a Driver can make on his or Her team, fans and sponsors needs to be a good one. A good first impression can be the difference between success and failure.
To say that young South Australian Driver Tim Slade created a lasting first impression on those at Mallala raceway last weekend would be a massive understatement. The 18-year-old McLaren Vale resident performed exceedingly well in his Formula 3 race debut with South Australian outfit team BRM, qualifying well and taking an historic win in his first ever F3 outing.
In one of Australia's most competitive open wheel racing series, and a category renowned for producing tomorrow's Formula 1 stars, Slade created an impact with a debut weekend that will not be forgotten by himself or his team for a long time.
Indeed, quite the first impression.
After an highly successful test with the team to acclimatise himself with the difficult-to-drive F3 car a fortnight ago, Slade was immediately on the pace during Friday Practice, topping the timesheets on both occasions.
Qualifying was just as successful, with Slade placing his car onto the Front Row for both of the races comfortably ahead of championship contenders who have been driving F3 cars all season.
"I think perhaps we had a bit to good a day yesterday (Where he was fastest in both practice sessions) so I am a bit disappointed about missing pole today," Slade commented after qualifying.
"But I think we can go really well in tomorrow's races, so I am looking forward to it."
And 'go really well' he did, making a superb start for race one and jumping into the lead despite starting on the dirty side of the racetrack. He was never headed, and won his first ever Formula 3 race by just over four seconds to the delight of the parochial home crowd who had found a new local hero to cheer on.
"I'm really happy," Said Slade. "We got off the line pretty well and lead into turn one. After that we were able to lead the way home and take a victory." He said.
Race two, unfortunately, didn't go quite to plan, despite Slade impressively managing yet another perfect start to lead the field early. Heading up a five-car battle for the lead, Slade and his teammate Karl Reindler both ran off the circuit at the notoriously difficult Northern Hairpin in a racing incident. Slade rejoined the track, eventually finishing in sixth place.
But despite the off, Slade again proved that he has more than enough pace to run with the leaders in the competitive Formula 3 series, no small ask when you look at some of the talent that has emerged from the championship over the last few years.
A sure-fire sign of his commitment to success, Tim was disappointed with his performance in the second race.
"I am really disappointed with the end of the weekend," Said Slade. "We had a successful weekend until that last race. The team has been really good, and I am happy with the speed I have got in the car."
Slade finished the weekend with 28 points and proved that given the right opportunity, he would be a genuine contender for the Australian Formula 3 championship. He also proved that he has the right mental approach, the right attitude and the sheer car speed to succeed on a national or international level.
Which all means he also has the stuff to become the next South Australian sporting Icon.
For more information about Tim Slade, or for information about how you can support Tim and his racing activities, log on to www.tsrwine.com